W. Rodney McMullen is the Chief Executive Officer of Kroger, one of the largest general retailers in the United States. A seasoned leader with a wealth of experience in the industry, McMullen has been at the helm of the company since 2014. He is known for his strategic vision and commitment to the company’s mission of “feeding the human spirit.”
W. Rodney McMullen is the current CEO of Kroger, one of the largest general retailers in the United States. He has been in this position since 2014, following a long and successful career within the company that began in 1978. McMullen has played a significant role in the company’s growth and expansion, implementing strategic initiatives such as the “Leading with Fresh, Accelerating with Digital” growth plan and the Zero Hunger Zero Waste program.
Early Life and Education
Born in Pineville, Kentucky, McMullen was the first in his family to receive a college education. He holds both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in accounting from the University of Kentucky. His journey with Kroger began in 1978, while he was still a student, working part-time as a stock clerk in a local store in Lexington, KY.
Career at Kroger
McMullen’s career at Kroger has been marked by a steady rise through the ranks of the company. From his early days as a part-time stock clerk, he moved to Charlotte in 1982, becoming a financial analyst at Kroger’s corporate headquarters. By the age of 34, he was the company’s chief financial officer, playing a key role in Kroger’s merger with Fred Meyer, Inc. in 1999.
Over the years, McMullen has held numerous leadership positions within the company, including assistant treasurer, vice president of Planning and Capital Management, corporate controller, and senior vice president. He was elected to Kroger’s board of directors in 2003, and in 2009, he assumed the role of president and chief operating officer.
On January 1, 2014, McMullen succeeded David Dillon as the CEO of Kroger, and a year later, he was named Chairman of the Board.
Leadership and Achievements
Under McMullen’s leadership, Kroger has experienced significant growth and expansion. He has been instrumental in the company’s “Leading with Fresh, Accelerating with Digital” growth plan, which focuses on fresh foods, own brands, personalization, and a seamless omnichannel experience. This strategy has led to steady progress and growth for the company.
McMullen has also spearheaded several key initiatives at Kroger, including the Zero Hunger Zero Waste program. This ambitious program aims to end hunger and food waste in the communities Kroger serves by 2025.
Challenges and Solutions
Like any leader, McMullen has faced his share of challenges. He has navigated staffing shortages, faced public criticism over his salary, dealt with the complexities of a proposed merger with Albertsons, and competed with online retailers like Amazon. However, McMullen has confronted these challenges head-on, implementing strategic solutions to ensure the continued growth and success of Kroger.
Looking ahead, McMullen envisions a future where Kroger continues to lead in the industry. His vision for the company involves a focus on fresh food, digital growth, a seamless omnichannel experience, a commitment to zero hunger and zero waste, and strategic mergers and partnerships.
In conclusion, Rodney McMullen’s journey from a part-time stock clerk to the CEO of one of the largest general retailers in the U.S. is a testament to his leadership, strategic vision, and unwavering commitment to the company’s mission. Under his leadership, Kroger continues to innovate, grow, and serve its customers and communities.
Frequently Asked Questions
What year did W. Rodney McMullen start working at Kroger?
McMullen started working at Kroger in 1978.
What role did McMullen hold before becoming CEO of Kroger?
Before becoming CEO, McMullen was the president and chief operating officer of Kroger.
What is the “Leading with Fresh, Accelerating with Digital” growth plan?
The “Leading with Fresh, Accelerating with Digital” growth plan is a strategy implemented by McMullen that focuses on fresh foods, own brands, personalization, and a seamless omnichannel experience.
What is the Zero Hunger Zero Waste program?
The Zero Hunger Zero Waste program is an initiative led by McMullen that aims to end hunger and food waste in the communities Kroger serves by 2025.
Who did McMullen succeed as CEO of Kroger?
McMullen succeeded David Dillon as the CEO of Kroger.
Where is Kroger’s corporate headquarters located?
Kroger’s corporate headquarters is located in Cincinnati, Ohio.