Diversity Leadership: Tony Vernon, Kraft Foods Group

Tony Vernon, Kraft Foods GroupTony Vernon
Kraft Foods Group

Tony Vernon became the first CEO of the newly formed Kraft Foods Group in 2012, when Kraft Foods split its snack and grocery divisions into two independent public companies. “Tony has an impressive history of building and sustaining iconic consumer brands. His strong track record of growth through consumer-driven innovation, world-class marketing and strong retail relationships will help to further accelerate our business performance,” Irene Rosenfeld, CEO of Mondelēz International (formerly Kraft Foods), has said of Vernon.

Prior to joining Kraft in 2009 as Executive Vice President and President, Kraft Foods North America, Vernon was Healthcare Industry Partner at the private-equity firm Ripplewood Holdings. Earlier, he spent 23 years at Johnson & Johnson, serving as Company Group Chairman of DePuy Orthopaedics, President of Centocor, President of McNeil Consumer Products and McNeil Nutritionals, and Worldwide President of the Johnson & Johnson–Merck Joint Venture. During his time at J&J, he oversaw top brands such as Tylenol, Motrin and Splenda.

Vernon received a bachelor’s degree in history from Lawrence University and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. He and his wife have three adult sons.