Stater Bros. Markets has promoted Keith Thomas to the position of EVP – retail operations. In his new role, Thomas will oversee the retail operations of all stores across the company and reinforce Stater Bros.’ commitment to providing customers with a best-in-class shopping experience through superior in-store customer service, as well as remaining a member of the executive management team, which evaluates and sets key strategies for the company. He will report directly to Stater Bros. President Greg McNiff.
“Keith is a valuable member of our executive management team,” said Stater Bros. CEO Pete Van Helden. “This promotion recognizes his outstanding leadership skills and dedication to providing our customers with the best shopping experience in Southern California.”
Bringing nearly 40 years of retail grocery experience to his latest role, Thomas joined Stater Bros. in 1981 as a courtesy clerk at a Riverside, Calif., location. He then held a range of retail store and supervision roles, among them store manager, retail grocery supervisor and retail district manager. In 2009, Thomas was promoted to the position of regional VP – retail operations, and in 2018 took on the role of SVP – Retail Operations. Last year, he became group SVP – retail operations, his most recent position.
A graduate of the University of Southern California (USC) Food Industry Management Program, Thomas currently serves on the board of directors for the Lakewood, Calif.-based Western Association of Food Chains (WAFC).
San Bernardino, Calif.-based Stater Bros. Markets, the largest privately-owned supermarket chain in Southern California, operates 170 stores and employs about 17,000 associates. The company is No. 23 on Progressive Grocer’s 2019 Super 50 list of the top grocery stores in the United States.