From L to R: Don Fitzgerald, Jay Owen, Bob Mariano
Dom's Kitchen & Market, known as a local food emporium in Chicago with hubs of prepared and ready-to-use foods and a curated grocery assortment, has named Don Fitzgerald as its singular CEO. Previously, Fitzgerald shared that title with co-founder Bob Mariano.
Mariano will retain the position of co-chairman of the board of directors. His fellow board chair is the third co-founder, Jay Owen.
A titan of the grocery industry, Mariano worked his way up to the CEO position at the now-defunct Dominick’s chain in the Chicago area before being tapped to lead Roundy’s as CEO. Later, Mariano founded his namesake grocery business that did a robust business in Chicago and was acquired by Kroger in 2015. On Sept. 8, the Mariano’s brand was sold to C&S Wholesale Grocers as part of a $1.9 billion divestiture deal.
Mariano, Fitzgerald and Owen – grandson of Dominick’s founder Dominick DiMatteo – came together to create a new kind of neighborhood store with Dom’s Kitchen & Market. Their first store opened in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood in 2021 and the trio added a second location in the Old Town part of the city last year.
CEO Fitzgerald likewise is a grocery veteran. He got his start as a teenager working at a local Dominick’s store and eventually went on to serve as a group VP of non-perishable and logistics for that chain. He also held roles as VP of marketing operations for Safeway, VP of sales and merchandising for Meijer and group VP of merchandising and marketing for Roundy’s and Mariano’s. He earned an MBA from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business and an undergraduate degree from DePaul University and is a board member at the Greater Chicago Food Depository.
In a statement to Progressive Grocer, Dom’s Kitchen & Market shared that Fitzgerald has had all operating roles reporting to him since being elevated to co-CEO in 2021 and this latest move will solidify those lines of reporting. The statement added, “Don has been an integral part of the Dom’s team since inception and this change sets up the team to deliver on the next phase of growth for Dom’s. This organizational change will drive efficiency and decision making and also reflect the evolving needs of Dom's Kitchen & Market.”
According to Dom’s, Mariano and Owen will continue to set long-term strategy as board leaders.