February 1, 2023

Gelson’s Promotes John Bagan to President and CEO

Gelson’s has promoted John Bagan to President and CEO following the departure of Rob McDougall, who has retired from Gelson’s after 15 years with the Southern California-based brand. The new leadership position marks Bagan’s third promotion in two years, most recently moving from COO into the role of president in July 2022.

As President and CEO, Bagan will assume greater responsibility for the company’s overall vision, business and growth strategy, as well as managing relationships with the Board of Directors and parent company.

Bagan joined Gelson’s as Chief Merchandising Officer in 2016 following high-level Merchandising and Supply Chain roles at Guitar Center, Albertson’s and Target. He began his career as a business analyst for Morgan Stanley before receiving his MBA in Marketing from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.

Recognized as a progressive leader in the grocery industry, McDougall has spent nearly five decades in the grocery business. Joining Gelson’s in 2007 and rising to the CEO role in 2014, he sought to place a greater emphasis on fresh foods, along with organic and local products, recognizing the changing habits of Southern California shoppers. During his tenure, he grew the chain from 18 to 27 locations, including opening three locations in San Diego in 2016. His approach included customizing each Gelson’s to the needs of its community, while introducing new in-store social areas like wine bars and branded products like Gelson’s wines.

Gelson’s has concurrently promoted Rich Gillmore to Vice President of Center Store and Sean Saenz to Vice President Fresh Foods, while announcing key title changes to reflect additional responsibilities:

  • Clare Bogle is now Chief Financial and Administrative Officer with responsibilities for Finance, Accounting, Accounts Payable, Analytics, Payroll, Risk Management, Legal and Benefits
  • Ron Johnson is now Chief Information and Supply Chain Officer with responsibilities for IT, Supply Chain and PPIH synergies
  • Tom Frattali is now SVP of Group Synergies, leading Gelson’s efforts in group purchasing, supply chain efficiencies and private label expansion with the parent company
  • Paul Kneeland is now SVP of Merchandising and Sales with responsibilities for Center Store and Fresh Foods Merchandising
  • Tim Mahoney is now SVP of Operations, with responsibilities for Store Operations, Pharmacies, Construction and Maintenance and Loss Prevention
  • Yvonne Manganaro is now SVP of Customer and Team Experience with responsibilities for Marketing, Human Resources, Team Development, Public Affairs and Real Estate

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