Gus Lebiak has been named as the new president and chief operating officer at Krasdale Foods, succeeding Steve Silver, who is retiring.
White Plains, N.Y.-based Krasdale said Wednesday that Lebiak, currently senior vice president and COO at its Alpha 1 Marketing subsidiary, is slated to start in the new role on Jan. 1. Plans call for Silver to serve as an adviser and remain on the board of directors.
“Looking forward, I am confident that Gus will be a strong leader, providing continuity and deep insights that will result in further growth of our business,” Krasdale Chairman and CEO Charles Krasne said in a statement. “His promotion is a natural progression of his career and is well-earned. I look forward to working closely with him.”
Lebiak (left) has served as COO of Alpha 1 Marketing since April 2019, when he was promoted from vice president. In the COO role, he oversaw key departments such as advertising, digital services, customer service, community relations, retail operations, marketing, meat and produce, and merchandising, as well as retail regulatory compliance and training.
“Since coming on board at Krasdale, Gus has worked closely alongside me to create a culture of collaboration among employees resulting in our best-in-class management team,” according to Silver. “Most recently, when our industry faced unprecedented challenges, Gus played a big part in helping Krasdale help its customers to get through the pandemic on solid footing. I have complete confidence in his ability and leadership.”
Lebiak began his nearly 40-year career in the grocery industry working in retail roles for 10 years at Mayfair Supermarkets, including as assistant store manager. In 1991, he shifted to the wholesale side by joining Twin County Grocers as a buyer/analyst, late becoming a category manager. Next, in 1999, Lebiak assisted in the launch of supermarket cooperative Allegiance Retail Services, serving as director of grocery and then vice president of center store. He joined Krasdale Foods in 2012 as vice president of Alpha 1 Marketing.
“I feel so honored to lead this team, building on the vision and values of Steve Silver and the Krasne family,” Lebiak commented. “Throughout my four decades in this industry, I have never worked with a more dedicated or talented team. The management team at Krasdale is top-notch. I look forward to working closely with Charles and Thatcher Krasne, along with senior management and our valued employees, to innovate and to continue consistent, long-term growth across all areas of the business.”
Alpha 1 Marketing provides marketing and merchandising services to Krasdale wholesale customers C-Town, Aim, Market Fresh, Shop Smart Food Markets and Stop 1 Food Mart, as well as other food and grocery retailers. Krasdale’s Beta II Marketing subsidiary performs the same functions for the Bravo supermarket banner.
Other Krasdale affiliates include Consolidated Supermarket Supply (third-party grocery distribution), KoolTemp Foods (frozen and refrigerated food distribution) and Waverly (financial services). Krasdale also has a private-label grocery program.
“I also look forward to continuing to work closely with Gus,” stated Thatcher Krasne, president of Alpha 1 Marketing. “Gus is well-integrated into the Krasdale family and will continue our tradition of excellent customer service. I expect the transition to be very smooth.”
Silver has been president and COO of Krasdale Foods since January 2019. He previously served as COO before being promoted to president, a title that had been held by CEO Charles Krasne. Prior to that, Silver was executive vice president and chief financial officer. He joined the company in 1981.
Krasdale said Silver (left) has been pivotal in helping to expand the company into the one of the leading grocery distributors in New York City while also building out its vertically integrated structure.
“We’re grateful to Steve Silver for his tremendous leadership and the significant role he has played in growing and diversifying Krasdale Foods,” Charles Krasne commented.
Krasdale supplies more than 300 independent supermarkets in the Northeast and Florida, primarily in metropolitan New York. Store banners it supplies include C-Town, Bravo, Aim and Market Fresh supermarkets; mini-groceries Shop Smart Food Markets and Stop 1 Food Mart; and a host of delis, drugstores, convenience stores and other independent retailers selling food and groceries, reaching around 2,500 retailers overall. The company operates a 325,000-square-foot distribution center in the Hunts Point section of the Bronx.