David Jackson is the new president and chief operating officer (COO) of Simmons Prepared Foods.

Jackson, who took over the role in December, succeeds Gary Murphy in both roles, and will report directly to Todd Simmons, chief executive officer of Simmons Foods Inc. & Affiliates. He previously served as president and COO of Simmons Pet Food.

“David is a thoughtful and proven leader with a vision for Simmons that represents our shared values. He continues to play an important role in building cohesive teams and solid performance across multiple businesses,” said Simmons. “Careful planning has ensured a smooth transition of leadership and we are confident our team will continue to build on a strong foundation for growth in our Prepared Foods business.”

“Gary’s determined leadership sets us up for success. We’re thankful for his contributions and wish him well in his retirement.”

Murphy recently celebrated 25 years with Simmons, after almost two decades with ConAgra Foods. As President and COO of Simmons Prepared Foods, he led consistent growth, including multiple record-setting years of performance.


Jackson said: “Our deliberate strategy, innovation focus and commitment to great quality and customer service will continue to position us for success. Our people and our guiding values are what make Simmons special and I’m excited about the opportunities ahead.”

Jackson earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Administrative Management from the University of Arkansas and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Texas at Austin. He recently celebrated 25 years at Simmons. Jackson spent most of his early career with the company in the poultry business before leading Simmons Pet Food for the last four years.

He lives in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, with his wife and two children.

Jason Godsey is the new president and COO of Simmons Pet Food.