Robert Edwards will replace Steven Burd as CEO of Safeway, the company announced Monday evening.
Edwards, 57, currently serves as Safeway’s president and will assume CEO responsibilities on May 14 when Burd resigns as CEO and chairman. Filling the chairman role will be lead independent director T. Gary Rogers who will become non-executive chairman.
Edwards is well known to Safeway employees and investors having joined the company in 2004 as EVP and CFO. In April 2012, he was named president, with overall responsibility for the company's retail operations, marketing, merchandising, corporate brands, manufacturing, distribution and finance functions. He remained as CFO until February of this year when Peter Bocian joined Safeway as CFO.
Edwards also serves as director of KKR Financial Holdings and Safeway’s Blackhawk Network Holdings subsidiary.
"Since he arrived here in 2004, Robert has successfully met every challenge he has faced," said Burd said. "He has demonstrated the ability to lead the company in all facets of its operations, and has earned the respect of the entire organization."
Rogers, Burd’s replacement as chairman, has served on the Safeway board since 2011 and is the former chairman and CEO of Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream where he served for three decades. He also served as non-executive chairman of Levi Strauss & Co. and of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
"The Board undertook a thorough search and concluded that Robert is the best candidate to lead Safeway," Rogers said. "He has the talent and experience that give the board confidence that he will be a successful CEO."