Land O'Frost appoints new CEO
January 3, 2011
by Bryan Salvage
LANSING, Ill. – David Van Eekeren was named CEO of Land O'Frost, America's third-largest and fastest growing lunchmeat brand, effective Jan. 3. Donna Van Eekeren will continue to serve as executive chairman and shift her focus from day-to-day operations to long-term strategic planning for the company.
David Van Eekeren is the family's third generation to lead the 52-year-old business. He has served as the company's president since 2008 and started working for Land O'Frost full-time in 1991 as a supervisor in the Searcy, Ark., manufacturing plant. Since then, he worked in practically every part of the company before assuming the role of executive vice president in 2005.
"Our management team has developed a comprehensive vision for the future and a strategy for the long-term growth of Land O'Frost,” Donna Van Eekeren said. “I strongly believe the time has arrived for David to have the full authority to implement this vision for our future. The knowledge and experience David has gained from years of working at Land O'Frost, coupled with his proven talents as a leader, make him eminently qualified to fill the role of CEO and president. This is a huge step toward keeping the Land O'Frost business in the family for the long-term."
Land O'Frost was founded by Antoon Van Eekeren, David's grandfather. David's father Paul Van Eekeren then ran the company until his death in 2001, when his wife, Donna, assumed her role as the company's CEO.
"It is an honor to follow in the footsteps of my grandfather, father and mother by leading Land O'Frost," said David Van Eekeren, president and chief effective officer of Land O'Frost.
Van Eekeren earned a bachelor's degree in economics from the University of Kansas and an MBA in finance from Loyola University in Chicago.
Land O'Frost manufactures sliced packaged luncheon meats and is the largest family owned brand of packaged deli meat in the US. The Land O'Frost brand can be found in the supermarkets and mass merchandisers that account for nearly 90% of the retail sales in the country, as well as Mexico, Puerto Rico and other US Territories. Land O'Frost also manufactures specialty meat products sold to restaurants and major food manufacturers. The company operates three facilities in Lansing, Ill., Madisonville, Ky., and Searcy, Ark.