Smithfield Foods Shakes Up Leadership Team

Lisa Johnston
Managing Editor
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Scott Saunders
Scott Saunders

Smithfield Foods gave its leadership team a brisk shake on Thursday, including naming a new chief supply chain officer.

The moves were announced by Smithfield president David Organ, who took the helm in November following the retirement of Kenneth Smith as president and CEO.

Headquartered in Smithfield, Va., Smithfield Foods is a wholly owned subsidiary of Hong Kong-based WH Group Ltd. It employs about 40,000 people in the U.S. and 14,000 in Europe, with such brands as Nathan’s Famous and Eckrich joining its namesake brand in its portfolio.

Scott Saunders was named chief supply chain officer, elevated from executive VP, U.S. supply chain, and president, fresh pork division. Prior to joining Smithfield, he served as chief financial officer at John Morrell Food Group, and began his career at Hormel Foods.

Shane Smith, who joined the company in 2003, becomes chief strategy officer, tasked with developing, executing and sustaining the company's efforts to achieve growth through its own resources, and via M&A. He’ll continue to oversee the company's European operations.

Brady Stewart has been named chief manufacturing officer, with oversight over Smithfield's strategy implementation across the 500-plus company-owned U.S. farms and 45 production facilities. He’ll also lead day-to-day operations of Smithfield’s entire vertically integrated domestic business.

Other leadership changes include:

Russ Dokken has been named chief sales officer.

Keira Lombardo has taken expanded responsibility as chief administrative officer.

Joe Weber has been appointed chief commodity hedging officer.

Glenn Nunziata continues in his role as chief financial officer and leads the finance, accounting, treasury, tax, risk management and IT functions. He is also the principal accounting officer.

All seven report to Organ, who noted in a statement that they represent decades of collective company and industry expertise.

“It is a testament to our depth and strength at Smithfield that such talented individuals are within our ranks," said Organ, who had previously served as Smithfield’s chief operating officer. "Building on our guiding principles of responsibility, operational excellence and innovation, this team will carry our company forward and make operational excellence our standard. I am thrilled to work with them to shape Smithfield's promising future."

A series of executive VP appointments was also announced:

Luis Cerdan was named executive VP, European operations, responsible for the profitability of Smithfield's European operations in Poland, Romania and the U.K. 

Jamie Dik was named executive VP, fresh meats, and oversees the domestic and international sales and business management for Smithfield Foods' fresh meats portfolio.

Steve France was named executive VP, packaged meats, and is directly responsible for Smithfield's packaged meats and value-added fresh sales.

Mark Hall was named appointed executive VP, finance.

John Sargent was named executive VP, hog production.

As part of these changes, four executives are retiring: Dhamu Thamodaran, executive VP, chief strategy officer and chief commodity hedging officer; John Pauley, chief commercial officer of packaged meats; Bill Michels, senior VP of operations, packaged meats; and Michael Cole, senior advisor to the CEO and corporate secretary.

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