CINCINNATI – The Kroger Co. has named Joe Grieshaber, 52, president of Kroger's Dillon Food Stores division, replacing John Bays, who is retiring after 42 years with Kroger. Based in Hutchinson, Kan., Dillon Food Stores operates 91 stores in Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska and employs more than 11,500 people.

Grieshaber began his career with Kroger in 1983 as a store manager trainee in Nashville. During his career, he has held a variety of leadership roles including meat merchandiser, zone manager and vice president of merchandising.

Most recently, Grieshaber has served as group vice president of perishables merchandising and procurement for Kroger, a position he has held since 2003. In that role, he has been responsible for fresh and natural foods throughout Kroger's family of stores.

"Joe’s merchandising and management experience will serve our associates and customers well,” said Rodney McMullen, president and chief operating officer of Kroger. “We look forward to Joe's leadership at Dillons as we continue to focus on improving our customers' overall shopping experience.”

"We are very grateful to John for his tremendous contributions to our company during his career with Kroger,” he added. “Under John's leadership, Dillons continued to grow and sharpen its focus on serving customers."