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Former produce executive promoted at Safeway following high-level retirement

Safeway Inc., based in Pleasanton, CA, announced the retirement of Bruce Everette, executive vice president of retail operations. Kelly Griffith, president of merchandising, will succeed Mr. Everette in the post.

Mr. Everette worked at Safeway for 44 years, beginning in 1968 as a clerk in Virginia. He ascended the retail management ranks, holding positions in Oklahoma, Arizona, Illinois and Northern California. He was named president of the company's Phoenix Division in 1995 and became President of the Northern California Division in 1998. He was named Executive Vice President of Retail Operations in 2001.

"We are deeply grateful to Bruce for his significant and lasting contribution to our company's success," Steve Burd, chairman and chief executive officer of Safeway, said in a press release. "He is the consummate operating executive whose results and people-oriented approach to the business leave an unmistakable imprint on who we are as a company."

Mr. Griffith brings 33 years of experience and leadership to his new role. After working his way through a range of retail store management assignments, he was assigned to corporate retail operations in 1999 and was named vice president the following year. He was promoted to vice president of retail operations in the Seattle Division in 2001, then returned to the corporate office as senior vice president of produce and floral in 2004. He was promoted to Portland Division president in 2005 and returned to corporate in 2008 as president of perishables. In 2010 he was named president of merchandising.

"Over the years Kelly has assumed increasing responsibility at both Division and Corporate levels," Safeway President Robert Edwards said in the press release. "He is a well-rounded executive with a deep background in marketing and retail, and he is ready to lead our Retail Operations to further success. I am extremely pleased to have an executive with Kelly's experience ready to step up to fill this important role."