Former Dollar General exec joins Pantry board

CARY, N.C. — The Pantry, a leading independently operated convenience store chain in the southeastern U.S., has appointed former Dollar General executive Kathleen Guion to its board of directors.

“We are very excited to have Kathleen Guion join our board of directors,” said chairman of the Pantry’s board Edwin J. Holman. “Kathleen has extensive experience in the retail and convenience store industries and has an impressive history of successfully leading the companies she has served. Her knowledge and expertise will be a great addition to our board of directors.”

Guion most recently served as division president of store operation and development from 2005 until her retirement in 2012 from Dollar General Corporation. She led the retail field organization of store operations and store development with a team of 90,000 store employees, 100 directors and 14 VPs. Guion played a leading role in the company’s sales growth from $6.8 billion in 2003 to more than $14 billion in 2011. At the same time she increased the number of stores from 6,500 to more than 9, 900. She has overseen brand enhancement and successfully championed supply chain overhauls by implementing new store technologies and corporate-wide merchandising strategies. Those efforts led to double-digit comp store sales during the 2007-09 recession, more than $160 million in shrink savings and a 40% reduction in staff turnover.

In 1979, Guion began her career with 7-Eleven Corporation (formerly known as Southland prior to 1999), where she eventually became VP and GM, serving as such from 1987 to 1997. She was a senior operating manager with full P&L responsibility for the company’s largest and most profitable division of company-owned stores.

After her time at 7-Eleven, Guion was president and COO of E-Z Serve Corporation. She was recruited to plan and direct the turnaround and return to profitability of this seven-state southeastern convenience store chain with revenues of $745 million. 

Guion was an operating partner with Devon Partners from 1999 to 2000. As an operating partner she identified acquisition targets and developed detailed operational improvement plans that would provide returns to investors in excess of 40%.

She was appointed to the board of True Value Company in July 2012. True Value Company is one of the world's largest retailer-owned hardware cooperatives serving 54 countries with more than 5,000 stores.

The Pantry operates 1,568 stores in 13 states under select banners, including Kangaroo Express, its primary operating banner. The Pantry's stores offer a broad selection of merchandise, as well as gasoline and other ancillary services designed to appeal to the convenience needs of its customers.