US confectioner Jelly Belly has appointed Lisa Rowland Brasher, vice chair of its board, as president and CEO of the company.
Brasher will "lead all executive and operational activities" at the business, replacing president and COO Robert Simpson. She is the latest descendant of the company's founder to lead the business.
Brasher will report into chairman Herman Rowland Sr, who is also her father. "This company was founded on the traditions of family and quality candy. We intend to remain a family company, and I’m proud that the fifth and sixth generations are stepping up to drive the business forward. I have great confidence that this appointment will position the company for successive generations to carry on the 146-year tradition of candy manufacturing," Rowland said.
Simpson joined Jelly Belly 15 years ago after three decades at supermarket chain Raley’s. He will retire from the role at the end of the month.
"It has been a phenomenal 15 years and I am so appreciative of having worked on an iconic brand that positively impacts the lives of our employees, business partners and consumers," said Simpson. "What we accomplish is admired throughout the industry. I know there are even more great things ahead."
Brasher joined the the company in 1982 as a customer service representative and a billing clerk. She joined the executive team as corporate Director in the 1990s, became vice president of administration in 2006 and then vice chair in 2009.
Brasher, along with her brothers, brother-in-law and sister, represents the fifth generation of the candy-making family. Her great great-grandfather, Gustav Goelitz, came to America from Germany and became the first known candy maker in the family in 1869.