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Kroger lifer retires from ops role

After 37 years with Kroger, Robert Williams is stepping down from his role as SVP of operations in May.

Williams has served in his current role since 2007 and oversees seven of Kroger’s supermarket divisions. His successor was not immediately named.

"Throughout his extraordinary career, Pete's leadership has reflected his passion for our associates, customers and local communities. He has been a tremendous asset to our company and will be missed," said Mike Ellis, Kroger's president and COO. "Whether developing associates and fostering career paths for many people within the company, or influencing Kroger to improve the customer experience, Pete led with a contagious enthusiasm and steady presence. We thank Pete for his many years of dedicated service and wish him and his wife, Jennifer, the very best in retirement."

Upon graduating from the University of Mississippi, Williams joined Kroger in 1977 as a management trainee in Memphis with with the company's Delta division. Beginning in 1978 he held a variety of human resources leadership roles, working his way up to serve as director of labor relations at the company's general office in 1987. He moved back to Atlanta three years later, where he spent the next several years serving as vp of operations and vp of merchandising, before being promoted to president of Kroger's Mid-Atlantic division in 1998.