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Unified Grocers, Inc. has appointed former chairman and CEO of Nestle USA Brad Alford as an independent, non-shareholder director to its board.
During Alford's time as CEO at Nestle, revenue grew from $7.5 billion in 2006 to $12.7 billion in 2012. Alford's leadership principles included focusing management on "making the complex, simple" and developing a strategic focus on three key elements: people, innovation and execution. These principles led Fortune magazine to recognize the company as the "Most Admired Food and Beverage Company" for 10 years in a row.
"We are pleased to welcome Brad to the board of directors," said Unified President and CEO Bob Ling. "His appointment reflects our confidence regarding the business prospects for independent retail grocers and our commitment to serving that market. Adding two such distinguished directors in the space of a few months only strengthens the overall capability of our board."
Alford spent his entire career with Nestlé, or companies acquired by Nestlé. He began his career in 1980 as a sales/marketing trainee with the Carnation Company, acquired by Nestlé in 1985. He later took on leadership roles in both U.S. and International divisions, including pet care, confections, beverages, frozen foods, ice cream and food services.
He is currently on the board at Avery Dennison and was an executive board member of the Grocery Manufacturers Association.
Founded in 1922, Unified Grocers is a retailer-owned wholesale grocery distributor that supplies independent retailers throughout the western United States. Unified and its subsidiaries generated approximately $3.7 billion in sales during fiscal year 2013.