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Driscoll's makes organizational changes to advance global business strategy

Driscoll's, a leading distributor of fresh berries, announced changes in its organization to further advance its global business strategy.

"Our mission is to continually delight berry consumers through alignment with our customers and our berry growers," J. Miles Reiter, chairman and chief executive officer of the Watsonville, CA-based company, said in a press release. "Over the last 25 years, we have seen Driscoll's grow and develop into a multi-faceted leader of the North American fresh berry industry, with expanding brand presence in other parts of the world. The changes in our executive management structure will position the company to build new capabilities for the next 25 years of continued growth in this exciting industry."

Foremost among the changes is the formation of a new global management team, which will be completed by Dec. 1. Kevin Murphy has been promoted to president and chief operating officer of Driscoll's. He most recently served as president of Driscoll's of the Americas.

"Kevin has demonstrated the leadership skills, focus and judgment required to take our diverse global business units to the levels called for in the strategic plan," Reiter said in the press release.

Leadership responsibility for the Driscoll's of the Americas business unit will be assumed by Soren Bjorn, who most recently held the position of senior vice president of Driscoll's international business and global technologies, with responsibility for directing the company's business units in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Australia. Bjorn will become an executive vice president in the new global management structure.

The global management team at Driscoll's will also include Sean Martin, chief financial officer;_ Lynne Oldham, chief human resource officer; David Sterry, senior vice president of global R&D, business development and strategic planning;_and Theo Houwen, senior vice president of Driscoll's of Europe, Middle East and Africa.

Reiter also confirmed his plan to continue in the role of chairman and chief executive officer at Driscoll's, focusing his energies on strategic direction and capabilities.

This team will lead the development of Driscoll's strategic plan, while directing resource investments and cross-function activities needed to achieve Driscoll's long-term vision.

"I am excited by the future for Driscoll's under Kevin's leadership," Reiter said in the press release. "We are putting in place the leadership, organization capabilities and collaborations with our customer and berry grower-partners that will enable us to achieve the aspiration of our global vision. Looking to the future, we will have a broader global reach and must be well coordinated to pursue our core mission across a wide range of geographies and cultural traditions."