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Tom Schwilke, currently president of Safeway’s Texas division, has been promoted to president and GM, perishables, a position that is part of the Pleasanton, Calif.-based supermarket chain’s corporate merchandising team.
Succeeding Schwilke as Texas division president will be Paul McTavish, currently VP, retail marketing execution in Safeway's Denver division.
Praising Schwilke’s and McTavish’s “proven track records of success in a variety of challenging retail and marketing leadership roles," Steve Burd, Safeway's chairman, president, and CEO, further expressed his utmost confidence in the executives’ “abilities to lead these large organizations… in their new assignments."
Schwilke, who will report to Safeway’s merchandising president, Kelly Griffith, began his career at Safeway in 1982 as a clerk in the Seattle division, where he advanced through the retail ranks to store manager and district manager. He was promoted to director, corporate retail operations in 2000, and later to VP. He was named VP, retail operations at Vons, and six years later returned to Safeway's corporate office as group VP, Produce and Floral. Schwilke was promoted to his most recent assignment in Texas in 2008.
McTavish joined Safeway 37 years ago as a clerk in the company's Portland Division. He advanced through a range of retail management assignments in six stores and three districts. He was promoted to VP, retail operations in the Denver division in 2000, including an assignment as interim Denver division president in 2003. He was named VP, retail operations in the company's corporate offices in 2004 and later that year became VP retail marketing execution for the Denver division.
Safeway operates 1,712 stores in the United States and western Canada and had annual sales of $40.8 billion in 2009.