Retail leaders making moves

Mike Troy
Editorial Director
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Casey's names Red Robin exec to new food service role.
Michelle Wickham has joined Casey's General Stores in key food service role.

Forty-four year Publix Super Markets veteran Joe DiBenedetto was named to the retailer’s board. DiBenedetto began his Publix career in 1975 as a front service clerk, rose to become Atlanta division vice president and retired last year. Retiring from the Publix board after five years is Tom Hough.

Other members of the Publix board include: Jessica L. Blume, former vice chair of Deloitte LLP; William E. Crenshaw, Publix chairman; Howard M. Jenkins, former chairman; Jennifer A. Jenkins, professor of law and director of the Center for the Study of the Public Domain at Duke University Law School; Publix CEO Todd Jones, Sr.; Stephen M. Knopik, executive chairman of the board of Beall’s and David P. Phillips, Publix CFO.

Casey’s General Stores named restaurant industry veteran Michelle Wickham VP of food service. Her role will be to continue to evolve Casey’s $1.1 billion prepared food service business, advancing the incorporation of a restaurant mindset for menu, quality, consistency and innovation across the company’s 16-state store footprint, the company said. Wickham most recently served as VP of culinary, category, R&D management, and catering for Red Robin.

It’s the end of an era at BJ’s Wholesale Club where Jonathan A. Seiffer will not stand for re-election to the board after a nine year run. Seiffer’s departure means the BJ’s board no longer includes any representatives from Leonard Green & Partners, the company’s former private equity owner.

Former Hershey president and CEO John P. Bilbrey was named to the board Tapestry, Inc., a luxury goods maker whose brands include Coach, Kate Spade and Stuart Weitzman. Bilbrey retired from Hershey three years ago and currently serves on the boards of Campbell Soup Company, Elanco Animal Health and Colgate-Palmolive.

The National Grocers Association (NGA) named former Progressive Grocer editorial director Jim Dudlicek as director, communications and external affairs.

Fresh Del Monte Produce said Charles E. Beard Jr. joined its board. Beard is COO of global consulting firm Guidehouse Inc.

Former Clif Bar and Starbucks executive Brian Braden was named COO at DeeBee’s Organics, a leading producer of organic, clean label freezer pops. Braden most recently served as VP of sales for Clif Bar and prior to that was a VP/GM of sales and business development at Starbucks.