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CINCINNATI-- Carver L. Johnson has joined The Kroger Co. here as its first chief diversity officer. Johnson has been with Kroger since 1999, serving as group v.p./MIS. He will remain an officer of the company in his new role.
"Diversity is one of Kroger's six core values. This addition to our officer team serves to highlight the need for Kroger to continually reflect the diversity of our customers in our associate ranks and in our daily decisions," said David Dillon, Kroger's chairman and c.e.o. "We look forward to Carver's leadership in this important area."
In addition to focusing on hiring, training and retaining a diverse work force, Johnson will oversee Kroger's supplier diversity efforts. Kroger says it has been a leader in the use of minority and women-owned business enterprises (M/WBE) in all aspects of its business for more than 25 years.
"Having MBE and WBE partners is important to Kroger's success. This is a fundamental business strategy," Dillon said. "Today, Kroger spends approximately $880 million with minority and women-owned companies. Our goal is to quickly reach $1 billion and beyond."
Johnson is active in many organizations in the Cincinnati community, serving as a youth mentor through the Cincinnati Youth Collaborative and is a board member of Wilberforce University and Jobs for Cincinnati Graduates (JCG).
A Florida native, Johnson has a bachelor's degree in mathematics from the University of the District of Columbia and a master's degree from American University.
At the end of the first quarter of fiscal 2006, Kroger operated (either directly or through its subsidiaries) 2,483 supermarkets and multi-department stores in 31 states under two dozen local banners including Kroger and Kroger Marketplace, Ralphs, Fred Meyer, Food 4 Less, King Soopers, Smith's and Smith's Marketplace, Fry's and Fry's Marketplace, Dillons, QFC and City Market. Kroger also operated (either directly or through subsidiaries, franchise agreements, or operating agreements) 783 convenience stores, 423 fine jewelry stores, 593 supermarket fuel centers and 42 food processing plants.