Board of Directors
Dr. John B. Elstrott
Dr. John Elstrott has served as the Chairman of the Board since 2009 and has served as a director of the Company since 1995, serving as Lead Director from 2001 to 2009. Dr. Elstrott is an Emeritus Professor of Entrepreneurship and the founding director of the Levy-Rosenblum Institute for Entrepreneurship at Tulane University’s Freeman School of Business, which he started in 1991. Dr. Elstrott served as a director and member of the audit, compensation and nominating and governance committees of the board of directors of Stewart Enterprises, Inc. from April 2011 to December 2013; Dr. Elstrott served as Stewart’s lead independent director from January 2012 to December 2013. Dr. Elstrott has a PhD in Economics and significant business experience, including over 40 years of experience as an entrepreneur and investor.
John Mackey, co-founder of the Company, has served as Chief Executive Officer since January 2017. He was Co-Chief Executive Officer from May 2010 to December 2016, was Chief Executive Officer from 1978 to May 2010 and was President from 2001 to 2004. Mr. Mackey has served as a director of the Company since 1978 and served as Chairman of the Board from 1978 through December 2009.
Walter Robb served as Co-Chief Executive Officer of the Company from May 2010 to December 2016. Mr. Robb also served as Co-President and Co-Chief Operating Officer from 2004 to May 2010, as Chief Operating Officer from 2001 to 2004, and as Executive Vice President from 2000 to 2001. Mr. Robb joined the Company in 1991 and previously served as Store Team Leader and President of the Northern California Region. On November 2, 2016, the Company announced that Mr. Robb would resign as Co-Chief Executive Officer effective as of December 31, 2016, and that he would continue to serve as a senior advisor to the Company from January 1, 2017 to September 24, 2017. Mr. Robb has served as a director of the Company since May 2010. Mr. Robb also serves on the board of directors of The Container Store.
Mary Ellen Coe
Mary Ellen Coe has served as a director of the Company since November 2016. Ms. Coe has served as Vice President of Sales and Product Operations at Google since November 2012.
Shahid (Hass) Hassan
Shahid (Hass) Hassan has served as a director of the Company since 2005. Mr. Hassan has been a General Partner of Greenmont Capital, an investment firm, since 2006. Mr. Hassan was a co-founder, President and CEO of Alfalfa’s Market and President of Wild Oats Marketplace. In 1999, Mr. Hassan founded Fresh & Wild, Ltd., an organic food retailer in the United Kingdom. Mr. Hassan served as President and Executive Chairman of Fresh & Wild from 1999 until 2004, when it was acquired by the Company. Mr. Hassan has over 35 years of experience in the retail grocery business in both public company and private company settings.
Stephanie Kugelman has served as a director of the Company since November 2008. Ms. Kugelman serves as a principal of A.S.O., A Second Opinion, a strategy and branding consultancy she founded in 2007, and since January 2015 as Vice Chairman at Solera Capital, a private equity firm. She was previously Vice Chairman and Chief Strategic Officer of Young & Rubicam Brands, a worldwide marketing communications company, where she held positions of increasing responsibility commencing in 1971. Ms. Kugelman also serves on the board of directors of HSNi.
Jonathan A. Seiffer
Jonathan Seiffer has served as a director of the Company since December 2008. He is a Senior Partner of Leonard Green & Partners, L.P. and joined Leonard Green & Partners, L.P. in 1994. Mr. Seiffer has over 20 years of experience in investment banking and private equity.
Morris (Mo) Siegel
Morris (Mo) Siegel has served as a director of the Company since 2003. Mr. Siegel is currently self employed, having operated Capital Peaks Investments, an investment firm, since 2002. Mr. Siegel was the co-founder of Celestial Seasonings, Inc., serving as Chairman and CEO from 1970 until 2002. Celestial Seasonings merged with The Hain Food Group, forming The Hain Celestial Group of which Mr. Siegel served as Vice Chairman from 2000 until retiring in 2002. Mr. Siegel also served on the board of directors of Spicy Pickle Franchising, Inc. until September 2011.
Jonathan D. Sokoloff
Jonathan Sokoloff has served as a director of the Company since December 2008. He is Managing Partner of Leonard Green & Partners, L.P., which he joined in 1990. Mr. Sokoloff serves on the boards of directors of The Container Store, Shake Shack Inc. and Signet Jewelers Limited.
Dr. Ralph Z. Sorenson
Dr. Ralph Sorenson has served as a director of the Company since 1994. Dr. Sorenson is the Managing General Partner of the Sorenson Limited Partnership, which focuses on venture capital investments in a diverse range of entrepreneurial startups. Dr. Sorenson is President Emeritus of Babson College (1974-1981); Professor Emeritus and former Dean of the University of Colorado Business School (1992-present); former Chairman and CEO of Barry Wright Corporation, a NYSE company (1981-1989); and a former professor at the Harvard Business School (1964-1974, 1989-1992). Dr. Sorenson is a former director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, a Life Trustee and former Chairman of the Board of the Boston Museum of Science, Trustee Emeritus of Babson College, a member of the President’s Council of Olin College of Engineering, and a director of the Toyota Mobility Foundation. Over the years he has served on the boards of directors of more than a dozen public companies.
Gabrielle Sulzberger has served as a director of the Company since 2003. Ms. Sulzberger has served as a Principal of a diversified investment fund, Rustic Canyon/Fontis Partners, LP, since its inception in October 2005. In addition, Ms. Sulzberger served as Chief Financial Officer of the Villanueva Companies, a private holding company with diverse investment interests, from 2002 through 2005. Ms. Sulzberger also serves on the boards of directors of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. and Brixmor Property Group Inc. Ms. Sulzberger served on the board of directors of Stage Stores, Inc. until June 2015.