SEATTLE — Bartell Drugs, the country’s largest and oldest family-owned pharmacy, announced two significant hires to its executive ranks last month, including Kathi Lentzsch as the company’s chief executive officer, who becomes only the fifth CEO in the company’s 128-year history.
Lentzsch comes to the company with more than three decades of retail experience with executive positions in leading companies, including Pier 1 Imports and Cost Plus World Market. As senior vice president of merchandising with Williams Sonoma/Pottery Barn, Lentzsch, according to Bartells, led the turnaround and repositioning of Pottery Barn into a well-known premium home brand.
Her latest position was as interim CEO at Gump’s, a luxury specialty store and direct-to-consumer retailer based in San Francisco. She also previously served as president/CEO and board member for Elephant Pharmacy, a Berkeley, California-based pharmacy that complemented western medicine.
“Kathi’s experience as a CEO and the breadth of her retail experience will be ideal for leading Bartells,” said Bartell’s board chairman, George Bartell. “She brings a record of transforming businesses through innovation and entrepreneurial agility. This will be instrumental in growing the Bartell’s brand as the local chain expands its reach in the Puget Sound region.”
The company also tapped Adam Wampler as its new senior vice president of operations. Wampler has more than 30 years of experience working with Safeway, and the Safeway/Albertsons organization. In his most recent position as its Northern California senior vice president of operations, Wampler was responsible for profitability, store conditions, diversity and employee development across Safeway/Albertson’s 283 stores in three states. He also held leadership roles in marketing execution, store design and store layout.
“Adam’s experience in grocery and retail are a great fit for Bartell Drugs,” said Lentzsch. “His focus on delivering an exceptional store experience through employee development and seamless operations will expand upon our famous Red Vest service.”