Land O'Lakes announces senior leadership appointments

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ARDEN HILLS, Minn. - Land O'Lakes, Inc. announced several changes to the Executive Leadership Team Wednesday to facilitate the company's strategy to significantly accelerate growth in its core and emerging businesses.

According to President and CEO Chris Policinski, Land O'Lakes has made substantial progress over the last several years in strengthening financial performance, market share growth and deepening relationships with customers and members.  "As a result of these efforts, over the past five years we've delivered the highest sales and earnings in our history, as well as the highest returns to our members," Policinski said.

Looking ahead, Policinski noted, "Today Land O'Lakes is a much stronger operating company, with the capacity to significantly accelerate the pace of growth and achieve a higher level of performance.  With this in mind, I am announcing several changes to my direct-reporting Executive Leadership Team.  These changes will ensure our structure and capabilities directly support the strategic imperatives of Land O'Lakes, and our leadership and resources are even more intensely focused on high-potential domestic and international growth opportunities." 

The changes summarized below are effective January 1, 2012, and the individuals report to Policinski unless otherwise noted.

  • Jim Fife will become Executive Vice President and Group Executive of Ag Businesses.  Reporting to Fife will be Rod Schroeder, Executive Vice President (EVP) and Chief Operating Officer (COO), Winfield Solutions-Crop Protection Products; Mike Vande Logt, EVP and COO, Winfield Solutions-Seed; Dave Hoogmoed, EVP and COO-Feed; and Karen Grabow, Senior Vice President (SVP), Business Development Services for the cooperative system.  The Ag leadership team will continue to expand their focus on strategies to strengthen the cooperative system and achieve accelerated domestic and international growth.    
  • Jerry Kaminski will become Executive Vice President and Group Executive of the combined Dairy Foods Business, which includes Land O'Lakes' branded products for consumers and business-to-business customers.  Carol Kitchen will join the Dairy Foods leadership team reporting to Kaminski in the role of SVP, Global Ingredients.  Kitchen will have responsibility for enterprise-wide strategy and solutions for major domestic and international food company customers.  
  • Steve Dunphy will become Executive Vice President, Growth Projects, with an initial focus on retail channel expansion opportunities and new growth initiatives across Land O'Lakes businesses.
  • Dan Knutson will continue as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, with the additional responsibility for oversight of Land O'Lakes' investment in the egg business, Moark, LLC. 
  • As announced on December 15, 2011, Beth Ford is joining Land O'Lakes in January, as Executive Vice President and Chief Supply Chain & Operations Officer.  Beth joins Land O'Lakes with 25 years of global supply chain leadership experience across multiple industries.
  • Peter Janzen is assuming the expanded role of General Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer.  In addition to his continued responsibility as General Counsel and SVP for the International Development Division (IDD), Janzen will take on the additional responsibility for Communications, Community Relations, Government Affairs, Member Relations and Security.  
  • Barry Wolfish will become Chief Marketing Officer and SVP, Corporate Strategy.  In his CMO role, Wolfish will provide companywide leadership for marketing strategy and marketing talent development, while continuing to have responsibility for the Corporate Marketing functions.  In addition, Wolfish will expand his strategic duties -- which currently include Total Margin Management, a margin-enhancement initiative – to also encompass Sustainability and Corporate Strategy, including an international focus.
  • Loren Heeringa will continue to serve as Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, leading the critical efforts to recruit, develop and retain the talent needed for strong performance and more rapid growth.

"I am very excited about these changes and congratulate the Executive Leadership Team members who are taking on new roles and responsibilities," Policinski said. 

"As Land O'Lakes enters a new era of growth, our future will be defined by our ability to utilize the collective strengths of the enterprise and capitalize on the opportunities in a changing global marketplace.  This new organizational structure enhances our ability to continue to deliver strong financial results and seize the growth opportunities that are before us – creating greater value for our members, customers and employees," he added.

Land O'Lakes, Inc. (www.landolakesinc.com) is a national, farmer-owned food and agricultural cooperative with 2010 sales of $11 billion.  Land O'Lakes is the nation's second-largest cooperative and No. 218 on the Fortune 500.  The company does business in all 50 states and more than 60 countries.  It is a leading marketer of a full line of dairy-based consumer, foodservice and food ingredient products across the United States; serves its international customers with a variety of food and animal feed ingredients; and provides farmers and ranchers with an extensive line of agricultural supplies (feed, seed, and crop protection products) and services.  Land O'Lakes also provides agricultural assistance and technical training in more than 25 developing nations.


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