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Joe Fey retiring from Kroger after 44 years

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CINCINNATI — Kroger Co. has announced the retirement of Mid-Atlantic division president Joe Fey, while Jerry Clontz, who currently serves as senior vice president of operations for Harris Teeter LLC, will succeed him, effective next month.

“Joe has accomplished much in his distinguished career spanning several supermarket divisions and Kroger’s corporate office,” said Fred Morganthall, Kroger’s executive vice president of retail operations.  “Joe is a true leader who exemplifies our values and focuses on doing what is best for our associates, customers and company. The people he has developed throughout his career will continue his legacy for many years. The entire Kroger family thanks Joe for his many contributions and wishes him and his family all the best in retirement.”

Fey, whose retirement will be effective February 10, began his career as a meat clerk with Kroger in 1972 while earning a bachelor’s degree in business administration at Indiana University. He was quickly promoted to a variety of leadership positions including store management, deli/bakery merchandising and meat/seafood merchandising in the company’s Central division and in its corporate office in Cincinnati. In 1999, Fey was named vice president of merchandising for the Dillons division, and in 2008 he was named vice president of merchandising for the Michigan division. In 2011, he was promoted to president of the QFC division. He was appointed to his current role in 2014.

Clontz will take on his new role on February 1.

“Jerry is a proven leader who is passionate about this business and the success of his associates,” said Sukanya Madlinger, Kroger’s senior vice president of retail divisions. “Jerry has a strong track record of success as a leader at Harris Teeter, and we look forward to his contributions in our Mid-Atlantic division.”

Clontz joined Harris Teeter in 1971 as a bagger in Marion, N.C. He has held various positions of increasing responsibility, including store manager, store director, district manager and regional director. In 1997, Clontz was named regional vice president, and he was instrumental in Harris Teeter’s entry into the highly competitive Washington, D.C., market, which included Northern Virginia, the District of Columbia, southern Maryland and coastal Delaware. He was appointed to his current role in 2007.