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WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - Longs Drug Stores on Wednesday said its board of directors has unanimously selected Warren F. Bryant, a senior executive with the Kroger Company, as its new president and CEO, effective immediately.
Bryant, 56, has also been elected to Longs' board of directors.
Bryant succeeds Harold Somerset, who will become vice chairman of Longs' board.
"We're pleased to have attracted an individual with Warren's experience in the retail sector," said Longs Chairman Bob Long, "and we're even more pleased that he's joining us from a major retailer like the Kroger Company, where he's spent his entire career."
Most recently a Senior VP of Kroger, Bryant began his career with Kroger's Market Basket Stores Division in 1964. He has most recently been responsible for the financial and operational performance of seven of Kroger's divisions.
Bryant served from 1988 to 1999 with the Dillon Companies, which Kroger acquired in 1983. He rose from vice president of marketing to serve for three years as president and CEO of Dillon, which at that time operated as a wholly owned subsidiary under the Kroger umbrella.
"I'm very familiar with Longs' strong regional presence due to my assignments in
Kroger's Western Region," Bryant said. "I now have the opportunity to better involve myself with a company whose market leadership in the chain drug industry is well known. My first priority is learning Longs by spending time in the stores working with the people who serve our customers on a daily basis.