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Starbucks announces key leadership changes in the management team

Starbucks announces key leadership changes in the management team


August 27 - 2022

Coffee Geography Magazine


Starbucks announced the departure of Chief Operating Officer, John Culver and is working to transform the leadership in order to speed the company’s reinvention.

In his press statement, the Chief Executive Officer and founder of Starbucks, Howard Schultz said “I’ve relied on John Culver’s steady hand and operational excellence through his 20-year career at Starbucks. As he sets to depart the company, I remain indebted to him for his great success in directly shaping and enhancing the brand across every business and market where we operate around the world. John has long been a champion of our partners and in building our next generation of great talent here at Starbucks. As a true servant leader, he has offered his continued advisory support to me and the leadership team through this transition, for which I am grateful.”

Howard Schultz

Chief Executive Officer and founder of Starbucks, Howard Schultz

Starbuck’s reinvention requires to rethink the leadership structure to create every opportunity for the new CEO and, most importantly, to accelerate delivery of modernized and elevated experiences for the green apron partners and the customers.

Schultz continued “As we speak to the external candidates in consideration for the CEO position, we’ve shared the Reinvention Plan and our aspirations for the future. The candidates are extremely excited and positive, and each is pleased to see we are investing ahead of the growth curve, and reimagining the partner, customer and store experience. Each leader in consideration sees the equity and power of the brand.”

The next CEO role will work side by side with the leaders of the day-to-day running of the business. Starting Oct. 3, the following partners will report to Howard Schultz as ceo for the interim, and will ultimately transition to new CEO when that individual is fully in place:

Andy Adams, svp, Global Growth & Concepts 

Belinda Wong, chairwoman, Starbucks China 

Brady Brewer, evp, Chief Marketing Officer 

Dennis Brockman, svp, Inclusion & Diversity 

Frank Britt, evp, Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer 

Michael Conway, group president, International and Channel Development Michelle Burns, evp, Global Coffee, Tea & Cocoa 

Rachel Ruggeri, evp, Chief Financial Officer 

Sara Trilling, evp, president, North America Retail 

Zabrina Jenkins, acting evp and General Counsel

In addition, the following functions, each critical to enabling the coffee business and reinvention, will report to Frank Britt as of Aug. 22, in his expanded role of EVP, Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer:

AJ Jones II, evp, Chief Communications and Public Affairs Officer 

Deb Hall Lefevre, evp, Chief Technology Officer 

George Dowdie, evp, Global Supply Chain 

Nick Bowles, vp, Strategy and Corporate Development 

Sandy Stark, svp, Data Analytics & Insights, and Business Operations 

Sara Kelly, evp, Chief Partner Officer