Over Aug. 7 and 8, Kroger announced leadership changes to the organization. On Aug. 7, the company announced Valerie Jabbar, who currently leads its Ralphs division, would take on the role of group vice president of merchandising effective Sept. 1.
Jabbar began her career with Kroger as a clerk in the company’s Fry’s division in 1987 and has held several roles within the company since then. “Valerie brings a wealth of knowledge, experience and insight to this role,” said Mike Donnelly, Kroger’s evp and COO. “As we continue the work of Restock Kroger, her ability to lead and deliver for our associates and customers will continue to transform our business,” Donnelly said.
Mike Murphy, who currently is vice president of operations for the Columbus division, will succeed Jabbar as president of the Ralphs division that operates 191 stores in Southern California with more than 21,000 associates.
“Mike is a dynamic leader who brings great passion to our business,” said Donnelly. “His strong commitment to our purpose and promise, and extensive grocery retail experience, make him a great asset to our Ralphs division,” Donnelly said.
On Aug. 8, Kroger announced that Gil Phipps would assume the role of vice president of branding, marketing and Our Brands, effective Aug. 15. Phipps is currently the vice president of Our Brands.
“We are fundamentally changing how we market to and engage with our customers, and Gil is the perfect talent—a personality full of creativity, imagination and fun who loves food and new meal experiences—to lead the way,” said Stuart Aitken, Kroger’s group vice president and CEO of 84.51°. “Kroger’s new marketing approach is more engaging, cross-functional, data-driven and customer-led in support of Restock Kroger. As we redefine the customer experience, we are using compelling marketing communications to create uplifting connections with our shoppers that earn even more of their sales, trust and loyalty,” Aitken said.