Campbell Soup Co.’s board of directors has elected Denise Morrison to be the company’s president and CEO, effective Aug. 1, the first day of Campbell’s next fiscal year. In October 2010, Morrison became EVP and COO and was elected a director of the company in anticipation of her appointment to the role of CEO at the start of fiscal 2012.
Morrison (left) succeeds Douglas R. Conant, who will step down as president and CEO on July 31, after more than a decade in that role. Conant also will step down from board at that time.
“Denise is a superb leader with strong operational skills, comprehensive knowledge of the business and the food industry, and powerful insights into the opportunities for driving profitable growth across Campbell’s portfolio,” said board chairman Paul R. Charron. “The board is confident that the company will flourish under her direction.”
Morrison, who has more than 35 years of experience in the consumer packaged goods industry, began her career at Procter & Gamble in 1975, and later rose through the ranks at PepsiCo, Nestle USA, Kraft and Nabisco. After joining Camden, N.J.-based Campbell in April 2003 as chief customer officer, she became president of Campbell USA in 2005, and president of North America soup, sauces and beverages in 2007. As COO, a role she took on in October 2010, she has headed all of Campbell's global businesses, including Campbell North America, Campbell International and Pepperidge Farm, in addition to corporate strategy, research and development and global marketing services. She has also garnered such industry honors as being named a Progressive Grocer Top Woman in Grocery in 2008, 2009 and 2010.
“At a time of rapid change and significant challenge in the food industry, we have the people, the brands and the opportunities to unlock the potential of our business and build shareholder value,” said Morrison. “In the past nine months, I have had the privilege of working closely with our board and our leadership team to examine our business with fresh eyes and design a new strategic direction for the company. We are immensely energized by our plan and by the skill, commitment and values of the Campbell organization. Building on the strong business foundation and exceptional culture that are Doug Conant’s distinguished legacies, we will drive a new era of growth at Campbell.”