Kelly Griffith, former senior vice president of produce and floral and president of merchandising for Pleasanton, Calif.-based Safeway Inc., is now executive vice president of retail operations.

Griffith’s promotion follows the retirement of Bruce Everette after a 44-year career at Safeway. He held the position of executive vice president since 2001, previously holding various retail management ranks, including president of the company’s Phoenix and Northern California divisions.

“We are deeply grateful to Bruce for his significant and lasting contribution to our company’s success,” said Steve Burd chairman and chief executive officer, in a news release. “He is the consummate operating executive whose results and people-oriented approach to the business leave an unmistakable imprint on who we are as a company.”

Griffith has been with Safeway for the past 33 years, working through retail management before being assigned to corporate retail operations in 1999. He was named vice president a year later and then in 2004, was named vice president of produce and floral in 2004, a position he held for a year. He has been president of merchandising since 2010.

“Over the years Kelly has assumed increasing responsibility at both division and corporate levels,” Safeway president Robert Edwards said in a news release. “He is a well-rounded executive with a deep background in marketing and retail, and he is ready to lead our retail operations to further success.”