Chutes & Ladders: JCPenney names its new CEO, Darden gets a whole new board

Welcome to this week's Chutes & Ladders, our roundup of hirings and firings throughout the industry. Please send the good wordor the badfrom your shop to Laura Heller at [email protected] and we will feature it here at the end of each week.


> JCPenney's board of directors announced the appointment of Marvin Ellison, currently executive VP of Home Depot, as president and CEO-designee. Effective Nov. 1, Ellison will also join JCPenney's board of directors. Ellison will succeed Myron (Mike) Ullman, III, the current CEO, on Aug. 1, 2015. At that time, Ullman will become executive chairman of the board for one year. Prior to his 12-year term at Home Depot, Ellison served for 15 years in various positions at Target. Ellison, 49, has 30 years of experience in the retail industry. Story

> Kroger appointed Alex Tosolini to serve in the new role of SVP of new business development, effective Nov. 3. Tosolini will lead the strategic process to identify, evaluate and develop new opportunities for the grocery chain and will report to the CEO. He has 24 years of experience as a global business executive for Proctor & Gamble, most recently serving as SVP of global e-business and VP of global e-commerce. Press release


> Darden Restaurants' entire board has been voted out and replaced by 12 directors nominated by Starboard Value LP. The restaurant chain operator, which owns the struggling Olive Garden chain, named Jeffrey Smith, Starboard's CEO, as its new chairman. The new board of directors then announced that it would bring back former board member Bill Simon, previously Walmart's U.S. chief, expanding the board to 13 members. Press release

> Lands' End has named Josephine Linden as the new chairman of its board of directors. Linden, founder, managing member and principal of Linden Global Strategies has been a member of the board since March of this year. She replaces Elizabeth Darst Leykum, who had served as chairman since April. Leykum will now act as chair of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee, while Robery Galvin will become chair of the Compensation Committee. Press release

> Luxottica Group announced that founder Leonardo Del Vecchio will take over as interim CEO after the board accepted Enrico Cavatorta's resignation. Cavatorta is the second CEO to leave the maker of Ray-Ban glasses in just over a month, following Andrea Guerra who held the position before him. The bleeding didn't stop there, though, as Roger Abravanel also left the board. Massimo Vian has been appointed co-CEO of operations and product, and Luxottica is still hoping to fill the role of co-CEO of markets. Press release

> Signet Jewelers announced that Michael Barnes has resigned from his position as CEO and from the company's board of directors, effective Oct. 31. Mark Light, who is currently Signet's president and COO, will succeed Barnes after his departure. Barnes joined the company in December 2010 and has been CEO since January 2011. Light has been with Signet for over 30 years and was mostly tasked with running Sterling, Signet's largest division before it acquired Zale. Press release