Salisbury, NC-based Food Lion, a subsidiary of Delhaize America, the US arm of Belgian giant the Delhaize Group, has announced three executive promotions key to its retail store operations.

Elwyn Murray and Cindy Schlaepfer have been named senior VPs of retail operations. Darrell Johnson has been elevated to senior VP of human resources.

Murray will lead Food Lion northern operations, including its northern and Atlantic divisions. Schlaepfer will direct the company's southern operations, encompassing its central, southern and western divisions.

Murray joined Food Lion in 1989 and has served in a number of positions including marketing, category management, information technology, and most recently as senior VP of procurement, distribution and quality assurance.

Schlaepfer joined Food Lion earlier this year as VP of the company's western division. She came to Food Lion from its sister supermarket chain, Hannaford Bros, where she most recently served as southern division VP of retail operations.

Johnson has extensive experience in human resources, payroll management and accounting. He joined Food Lion in 1985, serving as VP of human resources since 1997. He'll also have oversight of the company's retail services efforts.

As a result of these promotions, Robert Brunory, senior VP of fresh merchandising, also will now oversee Food Lion's distribution and quality assurance divisions. Meg Ham, senior VP of dry merchandising will assume additional responsibility for procurement and supply chain management.

Food Lion operates more than 1,210 stores and employs 86,000 associates, in 11 Southeast and Mid-Atlantic states.