TROY, Mich. — Kmart Corp. has promoted Ron Lalla to senior vice president of global operations, reporting to Cecil Kearse, executive vice president of merchandising. Lalla will be responsible for Kmart’s Far East operations, global sourcing and quality assurance.
Lalla joined Kmart in 1994, held positions of increasing responsibility, most recently as vice president of business development, and is credited with helping Kmart reduce overseas production and distribution cycle times, improving the quality of imported products, strengthening vendor relations and capitalizing on international market opportunities.
He succeeds Tony Vaal, 57, vice president of global operations, corporate brands and quality assurance, who will retire on April 30.
In related moves, Chris Cielak has been promoted from operations vice president, systems implementation to vice president, store operations administration, replacing Lalla. She will be responsible for all store administrative functions, including communications, payroll and expense control, best practices, systems and training, and corporate facilities management. A 30-year Kmart veteran, Cielak has progressed through the ranks of store and regional positions and has held positions in store system development-procedures and store operations.
Also, Charley Thompson has been promoted to divisional vice president of global sourcing, reporting to Lalla. An 18-year Kmart veteran, Thompson has held positions in the merchandising organization as a buyer and director of product development. As director of softlines sourcing, he spent three years in Hong Kong. He also served as director of human resources and director of project management, both in support of the merchandising group.