PROVIDENCE, RI — United Natural Foods, Inc., has appointed J. Alexander (Sandy) Miller Douglas to the role of chief executive officer and a member of its board of directors effective Aug. 9. 

Douglas was selected after an extensive search to replace Steven Spinner, who earlier announced his retirement as CEO and who will concurrently retire from the board. Spinner will continue to provide management and board advisory services to UNFI through a transition period for up to one year after his retirement. 

Douglas most recently served as CEO of Staples, Inc., leading the North American business-to-business distribution platform’s strategic transformation and guiding the company throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to Staples, Douglas served as president of Coca-Cola North America. 

“We are pleased to welcome Sandy as our new CEO and member of the UNFI Board,” said Ms. Denise Clark, chair of the board’s Nominating and Governance Committee and CEO Succession Planning Committee. “He has a demonstrated track record leading large-scale transformation and growth through strategic, customer-focused action. His extensive experience, which is directly aligned with UNFI’s focus on growing the core business while investing in innovation, make Sandy well-suited to successfully drive the Company through its next chapter of growth.” 

Also effective on Aug. 9, the UNFI Board has elected Jack Stahl to serve as independent chair of the board. Stahl has served in senior leadership positions throughout his career, most recently as president and CEO of Revlon Inc., and he currently serves as lead director of Catalent, Inc.