Safeway Inc. announced that Robert L. Edwards, currently the company's president, will succeed Steven A. Burd as chief executive officer May 14 when Mr. Burd retires as chairman and CEO. Mr. Edwards, 57, will also join the company's board of directors.
Mr. Edwards joined Safeway as executive vice president and chief financial officer in 2004. In April 2012, he was named president, with overall responsibility for the company's retail operations, marketing, merchandising, corporate brands, manufacturing, distribution and finance functions. He continued as CFO until Peter J. Bocian succeeded him in that role in February 2013.
"Since he arrived here in 2004, Robert has successfully met every challenge he has faced," Mr. Burd said in a press release. "He has demonstrated the ability to lead the company in all facets of its operations, and has earned the respect of the entire organization."
Mr. Edwards holds a master's degree in business administration and a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Brigham Young University.
Safeway also announced that T. Gary Rogers, currently the company's lead independent director, will become non-executive chairman upon Mr. Burd's retirement.
Mr. Rogers, 70, has been a member of the company's board of directors since March 2011.
"The Board undertook a thorough search and concluded that Robert is the best candidate to lead Safeway," said Mr. Rogers. "He has the talent and experience that give the Board confidence that he will be a successful CEO."