Amos R. McMullian, chairman of the board and CEO of Flowers Foods, yesterday [Wednesday] named William (Bill) A. Strenglis president and COO of the company’s Mrs. Smith’s Bakeries business unit.

The position previously was held by Gary L. Harrison, who is to continue as senior advisor to Mrs. Smith’s Bakeries and Flowers Foods until retiring early next year.

Commenting on the change, which is part of the Flowers Foods’ management succession plan, McMullian said: “Bill’s knowledge, talent, and passion for the foods business will serve Mrs. Smith’s Bakeries well. Bill has worked closely with Gary over the past few years as they prepared for this transition. We thank Gary Harrison for his 47 years of energetic and dynamic leadership.”

Strenglis joined Flowers, one of the leading producers and marketers of packaged bakery foods in the US, in 1991 – when the company acquired his family’s Minneapolis-based pie business, Pies, Inc.

Prior to his appointment as COO, Strenglis was executive VP of Mrs. Smith’s Bakeries.