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Whole Foods taps former Walmart exec to head up marketing


Whole Foods Market has named the former VP of marketing for Walmart’s Sam’s Club division as global VP of marketing.


Sonya Gafsi Oblisk will lead Whole Foods’ marketing, advertising and brand development efforts, including digital, brand marketing and customer relationship strategies. She has more than 15 years of experience in retail, consumer products and affinity marketing, including an eight-year tenure at Wal-Mart, where she most recently served as VP of marketing for Sam’s Club.


In other appointments, Whole Foods appointed Martin Tracey as global VP of team member services (HR), who will be responsible for the end-to-end team member experience, including recruitment, compensation and benefits, talent analytics, learning and development, and payroll operations for more than 87,000 team members. Tracey most recently served as chief talent officer and VP of people development at Starbucks Corp. 


Finally, Brooke Buchanan was named global VP of communications, responsible for Whole Foods’ public relations, internal communications and government affairs efforts. Buchanan has previously served as VP of communications for Theranos; VP of public relations for Williams-Sonoma, and held multiple senior positions at Wal-Mart.

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