CSCMP's Supply Chain Quarterly
December 09, 2018
Forward Thinking

From supply chain to corner office: Beth Ford starts as Land O'Lakes CEO

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Ford started at Land O'Lakes in 2012 as its chief supply chain officer.

Today Beth E. Ford joins the ranks of former Walmart CEO H. Lee Scott and current Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook as one of a handful of executives with significant supply chain management experience who has reached the corner office of a Fortune 500 corporation. 

Ford, 54, was named late last week as president and CEO of Land O'Lakes, Inc., a 97-year-old member-owned agricultural co-operative with annual revenues of more than $14 billion. She officially takes over today.

Ford has been with Arden Hills, Minn.-based Land O'Lakes since January 2012, when she was hired as executive vice president, chief supply chain and operations officer. Ford was promoted in November 2015 to be group executive vice president and chief operating officer, where, among other responsibilities, she ran the company's supply chain. Last December, she was named COO for all of Land O'Lakes' businesses.

Prior to joining Land O'Lakes, Ford spent nearly four years running the supply of International Flavors and Fragrances Inc., the multinational cosmetics giant.

During her years running Land O'Lakes' supply chain, Ford was a familiar presence at conferences, appearing on numerous panels. She also has the distinction of being the first openly gay female CEO of a Fortune 500 company.

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