Executive News Southeast

Smithfield Foods’ Organ Appoints New Executive Leadership Team

Smithfield executive leadership

Smithfield Foods has announced new executive leadership appointments following Dennis Organ’s recent assumption of the president and CEO role.

“These key leaders 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,” Organ said. “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.”

 

Senior leadership appointments

The following seven leaders report directly to Organ, effective immediately. Each has been given a C-level title, which is representative of the strategic value of their respective roles on the executive leadership team.

  • Russ Dokken is appointed chief sales officer, responsible for aligning sales, marketing, product innovation and business management initiatives. He has held multiple leadership positions at Smithfield Foods, including his most recent role as EVP of U.S. packaged meats. Dokken began his career in 1986 with John Morrell Food Group, a former independent operating company, where he held various positions in sales until it was acquired by Smithfield Foods in 1995.
  • Keira Lombardo assumes expanded responsibility as chief administrative officer and leads the company’s administrative operations, including corporate communications, external affairs, government affairs, human resources, investor relations, legal and sustainability functions. Lombardo joined Smithfield Foods in 2002 and has worked in a number of capacities for the company, including EVP of, corporate affairs and compliance; SVP of corporate affairs; and VP of investor relations and corporate communications.
  • Glenn Nunziata continues in his role as CFO and leads the finance, accounting, treasury, tax, risk management and IT functions. He is also the principal accounting officer. Nunziata joined Smithfield as CFO in September 2015. Prior to joining Smithfield, he spent 19 years at Ernst & Young, most recently as a partner in assurance services. He has extensive experience in finance, capital markets, operational analysis, internal control and corporate governance.
  • Scott Saunders is appointed chief supply chain officer, with responsibility over the company’s entire vertically integrated domestic supply chain. His previous roles at Smithfield include EVP of U.S. supply chain, and president of the fresh pork division. Additionally, Saunders spent seven years as CFO of John Morrell Food Group, a former independent operating company. He has more than 30 years of experience in the food industry, having joined John Morrell in 2002 and beginning his career at Hormel Foods Corp. in 1986.
  • Shane Smith is appointed chief strategy officer and helps develop, execute and sustain the company’s efforts to achieve growth through its own resources, as well as through mergers and acquisitions. Smith also continues to oversee the company’s European operations, including expansion into new markets, mergers and acquisitions and capital investments in Smithfield’s businesses. He joined Smithfield Foods in 2003 and previously served as EVP of European operations.
  • Brady Stewart is appointed chief manufacturing officer and is directly responsible for Smithfield’s strategy implementation across the more than 500 company-owned farms and 45 production facilities in the United States, while overseeing the day-to-day operations of the company’s entire vertically integrated domestic business. He joined Smithfield in 2017 as VP and general manager of Kansas City Sausage Co. and Pine Ridge Farms when Smithfield acquired the companies. In 2019, Stewart was promoted to EVP of U.S. hog production.
  • Joe Weber is appointed chief commodity hedging officer, responsible for commodity hedging activities and research, and analysis of economic factors that impact business. In addition, Weber manages the price and cost risks associated with commodity inputs and leads Smithfield’s hog procurement efforts. He joined Smithfield Foods in 1994 and most recently served as EVP of growth and emerging business.

 

EVP appointments

The following five individuals have been promoted to EVP to support the senior executive leadership team:

  • Luis Cerdan is appointed EVP of European operations, reporting to Smith. He is responsible for the profitability of Smithfield’s European operations in Poland, Romania and the U.K. Cerdan joined Smithfield in 2002 and most recently served as president of Smithfield Poland.
  • Jamie Dik is appointed EVP of fresh meats, and oversees the domestic and international sales and business management for Smithfield Foods’ fresh meats portfolio, where she is responsible for achieving revenue and profit goals. Dik joined Smithfield in 2012 and has held a variety of sales and business management roles in the company’s fresh pork business, most recently as SVP of business management.
  • Steve France is appointed EVP of packaged meats and is directly responsible for Smithfield’s packaged meats and value-added fresh sales, with accountability for revenue and profit goals across all trade channels. In this role, he also leads the company’s marketing and innovation teams. Prior to this role, France served as SVP of packaged sales. Dik and France both report to Dokken.
  • Mark Hall is appointed EVP of finance, reporting to Nunziata. His responsibilities include financial planning and analysis, operations and logistics finance, trade spend, data analytics and project and capital management in support of U.S. business. Hall joined Smithfield Foods in 2014 as VP of finance and was promoted to SVP of finance in 2019.
  • John Sargent is appointed EVP of hog production, reporting to Stewart. He is directly responsible for the profitability of Smithfield’s U.S. hog production operations, which are comprised of roughly 530 company-owned and 2,100 contract farms in 15 states producing nearly 18 million hogs per year. Sargent joined Smithfield Foods in 2007 and most recently served as VP of U.S. hog production.

 

Senior leadership retirements

Smithfield also celebrates the service of four outgoing leaders who have chosen to retire:

  • Dhamu Thamodaran, EVP, chief strategy officer and chief commodity hedging officer will retire after a 35-year career at Smithfield and legacy independent operating companies, John Morrell & Co. and Farmland Industries. His knowledge and understanding of world agricultural markets, macroeconomics and the pork value chain have been a significant asset to Smithfield’s business and have made him a sought-after advisor, keynote speaker and guest lecturer.
  • John Pauley, chief commercial officer of packaged meats, will retire after 20 years of service. He joined Smithfield Foods 20 years ago as president of Curly’s Foods, Saratoga Spice and Iowa Quality Meats following two decades of service at Campbell Soup Co. and H.J. Heinz Co. Pauley has held a variety of sales and marketing positions in his time at Smithfield and has made substantial contributions to the growth of the business.
  • Bill Michels, SVP of operations for packaged meats, will retire after four decades of service. He has been directly responsible for overseeing and directing the day-to-day operations of Smithfield’s packaged meats business and has supported Smithfield’s business growth through strategic planning and goal setting to ensure daily business practices meet and exceed operational goals and maximize efficiency.
  • Michael Cole, senior advisor to the CEO and corporate secretary, will retire after 24 years of service. Cole joined Smithfield Foods in 1996 as its only corporate attorney and was appointed corporate secretary in 1999, when Smithfield Foods listed its shares for trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Between 2006 and 2019, he served as the company’s chief legal officer overseeing the Smithfield law department. During his career, he has advised Smithfield’s senior leadership team and public company board of directors on many key business issues, including the company’s merger with WH Group Limited in 2013.

Headquartered in Smithfield, Virginia, since 1936, Smithfield Foods Inc. is an American food company with agricultural roots and a global reach. Smithfield boasts a portfolio of brands, such as Smithfield, Eckrich and Nathan’s Famous, among many others.

Smithfield Foods recently completed the first renewable natural gas (RNG) project in Utah through its joint venture with Dominion Energy. See story, here.

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