LAKELAND, Fla., 2014-3-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — After 40 years of dedicated service, Publix Super Markets' Vice President of Distribution Richard Schuler announced his decision to retire, effective May 2.
Schuler began his Publix career in 1973 as an unloader in the company's Miami distribution center. In 1979, he was promoted to grocery supervisor, fresh pack supervisor in 1982 and produce department head in 1987. He moved to the Deerfield distribution center as dispatch superintendent in 1991 and transferred back to Miami in 1995 as Miami distribution manager. Schuler was promoted to his current position in 2000.
Publix CEO Ed Crenshaw said, "Richard has made significant contributions to Publix, most notable of which is developing a strong and viable distribution support function for our stores. Throughout his career, he has been dedicated to advocating for his customers and committed to the training and development of his associates. We wish him the very best as he begins the next chapter of his life."
With this retirement, Casey Suarez has been named Vice President of Distribution, effective May 3.
Suarez began his Publix career in 1978 as a part-time produce clerk at store 112 in South Miami. After working in different capacities at several stores in Broward and Miami-Dade Counties, he was promoted to store manager in 1988 and Miami Division district manager in 1994. In 2011, Suarez relocated to Lakeland to assume the position of director of warehousing.
"As a 36-year Publix veteran, Casey's background in retail operations and in warehousing gives him the unique ability to have insights into both functions of our business," said Sr. Vice President of Distribution and Manufacturing Mike Smith. "He has strong leadership abilities, which include engaging his associates, creating an inclusive workforce and promoting a strong sense of our Publix culture. We're confident Casey and his team will continue to build a strong supply chain."
Suarez and his wife Marilyn, Lakeland residents, have four children and four grandchildren. They are passionate about giving back to their community and are actively involved with the March of Dimes and United Way.