Courtesy of Sargento

Sargento Names New COO, Announces Two Exec Retirements

June 27, 2024
Mike McEvoy and Kristi Jankowski will retire, while Michael Pellegrino will become the company’s new chief operating officer.

Cheese producer Sargento has announced the retirement of two executives and subsequent appointment of a new chief operating officer, according to a release shared by the company.

Third-generation family owner Mike McEvoy will retire from his executive vice president of Operations role, Kristi Jankowski will retire from her position as executive vice president of Innovation, and Michael Pellegrino has been appointed to the COO role.

Pellegrino’s most recent role with Sargento was president and chief growth officer, and he has held various executive positions with the company since joining it in 2009. He and his team have accelerated the growth of the Sargento brand and led integrated marketing campaigns to help increase the brand’s recognition in the dairy case.

McEvoy joined Sargento in 1997 and has held numerous positions at Sargento, from trade promotion manager to marketing manager, vice president of sales to president of Food Ingredients Division. He has led the Operations Team since 2013 and has overseen more than $600 million of capital expansions during his time.

Jankowski has been with Sargento since 1999, having led the Innovation team for the past 14 years. She and that team generated nearly $3 billion in revenue in that time and have been awarded for breakthrough innovative products such as Sargento Ultra-Thin Slices, Sargento Balanced Breaks, among others. Jankowski also led Sargento’s Idea Center, where employees could share their ideas with the Innovation team to aid R&D.

About the Author

Andy Hanacek | Senior Editor

Andy Hanacek has covered meat, poultry, bakery and snack foods as a B2B editor for nearly 20 years, and has toured hundreds of processing plants and food companies, sharing stories of innovation and technological advancement throughout the food supply chain. In 2018, he won a Folio:Eddie Award for his unique "From the Editor's Desk" video blogs, and he has brought home additional awards from Folio and ASBPE over the years. In addition, Hanacek led the Meat Industry Hall of Fame for several years and was vice president of communications for We R Food Safety, a food safety software and consulting company.

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