Todd Jones, a former Publix Super Markets bagger who became the employee-owned grocer’s CEO in 2016, will leave his post on Jan. 1, while current President Kevin Murphy will be elevated to chief executive officer, Publix announced late Friday.
Jones, who has been with Publix for 43 years, will become executive chairman. The board’s current chairman, Ed Crenshaw, will remain on the Publix board as chairman emeritus.
Publix SVP John Goff will be promoted to president.
The grocer did not provide a reason for the leadership shift.
“Todd has been an outstanding leader,” Crenshaw said in a statement. “He has been committed to continuing Publix’s success and passionate about the development and promotion of our associates. We’re pleased he will continue to provide leadership to our company as executive chairman.”
Jones has had a steady rise through the ranks at Publix. He was elevated to store manager in 1988, became a district manager in 1997 and, two years later, was named regional director. He became vice president of the Jacksonville division for the Lakeland, Florida-based grocer in 2003 and SVP of product business development in 2005.
Jones was named president of Publix in 2008, CEO and president in 2016, and CEO in 2019.
“We are delighted to have leaders with the experience of Kevin and John who are ready to take the next steps in their careers,” Jones said. “I am confident in their ability to lead our company into the future and to continue to make Publix a great place to shop for our customers and a great place to work for our associates.”
Murphy and Goff also started their Publix careers as front service clerks.
Murphy’s tenure with the grocer began in 1984. He became a store manager in 1995 and was promoted to district manager in 2003, regional director in 2009 and vice president of the Miami division in 2014. He was named SVP of retail operations in 2016 and president in 2019.
Goff began at Publix in 1991, working various positions before being elevated to store manager in 2005. He became district manager in 2019, regional director in 2014 and VP of the Miami division in 2019. Last year, he was named SVP of retail operations.
Publix currently operates 1,358 stores in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia.
Publix also has aggressive growth plans for Kentucky, where it currently has six stores in the works. It first announced expansion plans there in September 2021 and, in July, it launched a “Hello, Kentucky” website to update residents on store progress. It broke ground in June 2022 for its first location, at the Terra Crossing Shopping Center in Louisville.
Publix hasn’t announced an opening date for its first Kentucky store, though local reports have said it will debut early next year.
Earlier this month, Publix reported net earnings of $833 million for the three months ended Sept. 30, a 111.4% jump from the same period a year ago.
Publix is the country’s largest employee-owned company, with more than 250,000 employees.