Tyson Foods names Donnie King president and CEO

Donnie King, chief operating officer of Tyson Foods, has been promoted to president and chief executive officer of the company, effective immediately.

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Tyson Foods has appointed Donnie King as the company's president and chief executive officer. (Tyson Foods)
Tyson Foods has appointed Donnie King as the company's president and chief executive officer. (Tyson Foods)

Donnie King, chief operating officer of Tyson Foods, has been promoted to president and chief executive officer of the company, effective immediately.

King succeeds current president and chief executive officer Dean Banks, who is leaving the company and the board, citing personal reasons.

“The board and I know that Donnie has a deep understanding of our business, values and culture and the solid leadership skills needed to continue to implement our strategy and deliver strong results,” said John H. Tyson, chairman of the board. “We want to express our appreciation to Dean for his contributions as a board member and executive.”

King has more than 36 years of experience in the protein business, holding a variety of executive leadership positions involving virtually all facets of the company including poultry, beef, pork, prepared foods and international. He has also provided executive oversight of other important areas, such as food safety and quality assurance, health and safety, continuous improvement, engineering, and supply chain.

He was named chief operating officer in February. He held that position along with being president of the company’s poultry business. King was tapped to lead the poultry segment in September 2020.

“I’m humbled but excited about leading Tyson Foods, a company that feeds millions of people and means so much to me personally,” said King. “I believe we need to be sharply focused on operating with excellence, executing our strategies, and continuing to innovate across our businesses throughout the world. With our strong leadership team, we are committed to winning with our customers and delivering an outstanding team member experience.”   

According to Tyson Foods spokesman Gary Mickelson, King will continue to lead the poultry business in addition to serving as CEO.

"It's critical that he continue to execute on the business strategy to return that business back to competitiveness," Mickelson said.

Presently, there are no plans to appoint a new chief operating officer.

Banks became president of Tyson Foods in December 2019, and was chosen to succeed Noel White as CEO in October 2020.

“Being a part of Tyson Foods has been a very rewarding experience,” said Banks. “Upon deep personal reflection, and discussions with my family, the board, and my colleagues, I believe that stepping down and concentrating on my family is the right decision at this time.”

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