Promotions at Lowe’s: Who’s who?
Lowe’s promoted four executives to key positions in merchandising, store operations and strategic planning. Here are the executives and their backgrounds:
• Robert (Bob) Gfeller Jr. has been named executive VP merchandising, replacing Nick Canter, who retires in March. Gfeller recently served as senior VP and general merchandising manager – hardlines and building products. He joined the company in 1999 and worked as senior VP marketing for 10 years before moving to merchandising in 2009. Before that, he worked in branding and retail marketing at The Coca-Cola Co. and Nabisco Inc.
• Rick Damron has been appointed to executive VP store operations, replacing Michael Brown, who was recently named EVP and chief information officer. Damron has served as senior VP logistics since 2009. His 28 years at Lowe’s has mostly been in store operations, working as senior VP of the company’s North Central and Northeast divisions, and regional VP of Lowe’s Pennsylvania and New Jersey markets. Damron also served as store manager and district manager earlier in his career.
• Doug Robinson has been promoted to senior VP customer support services, which includes Lowe’s customer contact (call) centers and flexible product fulfillment and appliance service/repair. In addition, he will assume responsibility for lowes.com. Previously, he served as VP store operations/specials projects
Robinson was instrumental in the development of Lowe’s Canadian market strategy and operations, while serving as the company’s first president of Lowe’s Canada from 2005 to 2007. He also served in Lowe’s U.S. store operations as district manager. Prior to Lowe’s, Robinson was president and CEO of ARXX Building Products in Ontario, and previously served as president and CEO of Beaver Lumber Co. in Toronto.
• Richard Maltsbarger has been named senior VP strategy. He most recently served as VP strategic planning. Other positions he held at Lowe’s include VP research and director of customer analytics. Prior to joining Lowe’s, Maltsbarger held various strategy, marketing and consumer analytics positions with IBM Global Business Solutions, Monsanto Company, Farmland Industries and the University of Missouri. He joined Lowe’s in 2004.
Lowe’s CEO Robert Niblock expressed confidence in the executives: “These outstanding leaders have been instrumental in the development and execution of Lowe’s current business plan, as well as the strategic initiatives that will drive our future success,” he said. “They know our company, our customers and the marketplace and are well prepared to excel in their new roles.”
Lowe’s president Larry Stone to retire
Mooresville, N.C.-based Lowe’s announced Friday that Larry Stone, president and chief operating officer, will retire June 2 after more than four decades with the home improvement giant.
Stone has served in virtually every leadership position within store operations and merchandising during his 42-year career with the company, and many credit him for Lowe’s success and rise into the No. 2 position among home-improvement retailers
“After more than four decades of commitment and dedication to the company he truly loves, we knew the day would come when Larry retires and begins the next chapter in his life,” said Robert A. Niblock, chairman and CEO. “He has made many important and lasting contributions to Lowe’s during his career. It would be an understatement to say he will be missed.”
The company said it does not plan to fill the president and chief operating officer position after Stone’s retirement. Niblock and Stone will work together over the coming months to ensure a smooth transition.
Lowe’s also promoted Robert J. (Bob) Gfeller Jr. to the post of executive VP merchandising. He will replace 37-year veteran Nick Canter, who previously announced his retirement, effective in March.
Three other executives were promoted: Rick D. Damron, executive VP store operations; William D. (Doug) Robinson, senior VP customer support services; and Richard D. Maltsbarger, senior VP strategy.