We are committed to upholding the highest standards.
Sobeys Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Empire Company Limited, has an identical Board of Directors as our parent company. These highly experienced Directors provide strong guidance and oversight, and Empire’s governance standards apply equally to Sobeys Inc.
Click here to view biographies for Empire Company Limited’s Board of Directors. To view biographies for Sobeys Inc.’s Officers, please see below.
Sobeys Inc. Officers
James M. Dickson is the Chair of Empire Company Limited. He is counsel to the law firm of Stewart McKelvey, with over 25 years of experience practicing primarily in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and securities prior to his retirement from the partnership in 2016. Mr. Dickson serves as a director of Clearwater Seafoods Incorporated. He is the Chair of the Board of Regents of Mount Allison University and past Chair of the IWK Health Centre Foundation. Mr. Dickson holds a Certificate in Engineering from Mount Allison University, a Bachelor of Civil Engineering from the Technical University of Nova Scotia and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Calgary. He is a professional engineer and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2010.
Michael Medline is President & Chief Executive Officer of Empire Company Limited (Empire) and its wholly-owned subsidiary Sobeys Inc., a leading Canadian grocery retailer and food distributor.
Mr. Medline is a proven leader with a strong track record of success in Canadian retail. He was appointed President & CEO of Empire in January 2017 after more than 15 years in a variety of senior retail leadership positions at Canadian Tire Corporation (CTC), including as that organization’s President & Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Medline began his career working with the Ontario Securities Commission in 1989, followed by two years practicing law with McCarthy Tétrault. He was Corporate Counsel for PepsiCo Canada before moving to Abitibi Consolidated Inc. where, between 1994 and 2001, he held a variety of roles including Senior Vice President, Strategy and Corporate Development.
Active in the community, Mr. Medline serves as a member of the Board of the SickKids Foundation, is on the Board of Governors for Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame and was previous Chair of the Retail Council of Canada. Mr. Medline has completed the Directors Education Program at the Rotman School of Management; holds an MBA from Raymond A. Mason School of Business, William & Mary; an LL.B. from the University of Toronto, and a BA from Western University.
François Vimard, CPA, CA, is Executive Vice President of Empire Company Limited and its wholly-owned subsidiary Sobeys Inc. For the period from July 2016 to January 2017, Mr. Vimard served as Interim President & CEO.
Mr. Vimard’s career at Sobeys began in August 1995 as Director, General Accounting (Québec Region). Two years later he was promoted to Vice President, Finance. In 2000, he became Senior Vice President, Finance and Strategic Planning for Sobeys’ operations in Québec. In 2003, Mr. Vimard was appointed Executive Vice President, Supply Chain and Technology. In July 2007, he became Chief Financial Officer for Sobeys Inc. and was appointed to Executive Vice President in October 2011. In February 2014, Mr. Vimard assumed the role of Chief Financial and Administrative Officer for Sobeys Inc. and Empire Company Limited, Sobey Inc.’s parent company.
Mr. Vimard is a Chartered Professional Accountant. He began his career as an auditor for Deloitte, Haskins & Sells in 1983 before joining Provigo Distribution, Inc. in 1985. Over more than eight years he held progressively senior roles in Finance and Supply, eventually assuming the position of Director, Planning and Financial Analysis. From March 1994 to August 1995, Mr. Vimard was Controller (Eastern) for Petro-Canada before joining Sobeys Inc.
Mr. Vimard earned his Bachelor of Business Administration degree and Licence in Accounting Sciences from Université Laval. He is a member of the Québec Chartered Accountant Order.
Clinton Keay, CPA, CA is Interim Chief Financial Officer for Empire Company Limited and its wholly-owned subsidiary Sobeys Inc. He is responsible for leading all areas of the company’s finance function including controllership, treasury, tax management, investor relations, financial planning, internal audit and risk management.
Mr. Keay joined Sobeys in 1989 and held a number of progressively senior finance roles including Vice President, Accounting and Control and Vice President, Finance and Treasurer before being appointed Senior Vice President & Chief Information Officer in 2002. As CIO he led all aspects in the development and execution of the company’s information technology strategy. He was appointed Executive Vice President, Finance, in 2014 and Interim CFO in July 2016.
Mr. Keay began his career with Clarkson Gordon providing audit, tax, valuation and business advisory services for a variety of clients in various business sectors.
A native of Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Mr. Keay graduated from Saint Francis Xavier University in 1986 with an Honours Bachelor of Business Administration.
Simon Gagné is Chief Human Resources Officer for Sobeys Inc., a leading Canadian grocery retailer and food distributor.
In his capacity as overall leader of the Company’s People, Performance and Development strategy, Mr. Gagné serves as the principal counsel and steward of Sobeys’ talent attraction, retention and development initiatives, as well as the organization’s succession and career planning, leadership development and people engagement initiatives.
A native of Matane, Québec, Mr. Gagné has close to 30-years experience in food retailing and in private and public transportation. Between 1985 and 1997, Mr. Gagné held a variety of progressively senior management positions with Cabano Transport in both Montréal and Ottawa and with the Montreal Urban Transit system (STM).
In 1997, he joined the Oshawa Group as Director, Employee Relations and in 2000 was appointed Vice President, Human Resources and Internal Communications, Sobeys Quebéc. In 2010, he assumed additional responsibility for the Company’s Distribution & Logistics function in Québec.
Mr. Gagné is actively involved in community sports and leisure.
Mr. Gagné has a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree from Laval University.
Lyne Castonguay is Chief Merchandising Officer for Sobeys Inc., a leading Canadian grocery retailer and food distributer.
Ms. Castonguay leads all aspects of Sobeys’ go-to-market strategy including category management, marketing, data insights, research, procurement, private label and merchandising, as well as the Company’s digital strategy.
A native of Edmundston, New Brunswick, Ms. Castonguay is a passionate and successful leader with more than 25 years experience in both retailing and manufacturing in the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia.
Before joining Sobeys in 2016, Ms. Castonguay spent 14 years in progressively senior roles at The Home Depot both in Canada and in the United States, including Senior Vice President, Home Services. Prior to her role at The Home Depot, she worked for General Electric in Canada where she held numerous roles including General Manager for the Canadian lighting business.
Ms. Castonguay holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from the Université de Moncton.
Yves Laverdière is President of the Quebec Business Unit for Sobeys Inc., a leading Canadian grocery retailer and food distributor. He is responsible for the IGA, IGA extra, IGA express, Marché Bonichoix, Les Marchés Tradition, Rachelle-Béry, IGA Mini and Bonisoir banners.
Mr. Laverdière held progressively senior finance, procurement and merchandising roles at Provigo Distribution Inc. before joining Sobeys Inc. in 1996. He served as Vice President, Procurement and Merchandising for the meat category before being appointed to Senior Vice President, Merchandising for the IGA banner in 2001.
In 2015, after 37 years in the food retail industry, Mr. Laverdière announced his retirement. In early 2016, he returned to Sobeys Inc. as President of the Quebec Business Unit, where he will continue to advance the Joy of Eating Better strategy throughout Quebec.
Mr. Laverdière holds an Accounting degree from the Université Laval in Quebec.
Beth Newlands Campbell is President, Atlantic/Ontario Business Unit for Sobeys Inc., a leading Canadian grocery retailer and food distributor. She is responsible for the Sobeys, Foodland, FreshCo, Co-op, Needs Convenience, Fast Fuel and Cash & Carry banners.
Ms. Newlands Campbell is an experienced leader in the grocery industry, having spent 30 years in progressively senior operations, marketing, merchandising and strategic planning roles with Delhaize’s U.S. operations, including Hannaford Supermarkets and Food Lion.
Before joining Sobeys in 2016, Ms. Newlands Campbell was President of the Food Lion chain which operates more than 1,100 stores across 10 Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic states supported by more than 60,000 employees. Prior to her role as President of Food Lion, she served as President of Hannaford Supermarkets, which operates 178 food and drug stores across five states in the U.S. Northeast.
Ms. Newlands Campbell holds a Bachelor of Science, with Honours, in Business Management and Marketing, Food Industry Management, from Cornell University.
Jason Potter is President, Operations, Western Canada, for Sobeys Inc., a leading Canadian grocery retailer and food distributor. He is responsible for the West Business Unit including the Sobeys, Safeway, Thrifty Foods, IGA (Western Canada), Cash & Carry, Sobeys Liquor and Safeway Wine & Spirits banners.
Mr. Potter has worked with the company since 1992 in progressively senior operations and merchandising roles. Prior to his appointment as President, Operations, Western Canada in April 2015 he was President, Sobeys Multi-Format Operations.
Mr. Potter holds an MBA from Athabasca University and is a graduate of Harvard University’s Advanced Management Program for business. In May 2009, Mr. Potter was recognized as a recipient of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40™ award, which annually honours 40 Canadians under the age of 40 for vision, leadership, innovation, achievement and community involvement.
Karin McCaskill is Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of Sobeys Inc. and Corporate Secretary of its parent, Empire Company Limited. She has overall responsibility for the legal affairs of Sobeys Inc., and corporate governance responsibility for Empire and its subsidiaries.
Before joining Sobeys in December 2002, Ms. McCaskill was a partner of Stewart McKelvey Stirling Scales in Halifax, where she practised law for over twenty years.She served as Chair of the Nova Scotia Labour and Employment Law Section of the Canadian Bar Association, and on the Executive of the CBA’s National Labour and Employment Law Section including a two-year term as Chair. She was a Founder and Director of the Canadian Association of Counsel to Employers.
Ms McCaskill is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario (Honours Business Administration, 1975) and Osgoode Hall Law School (LLB, 1978). She has been a member of the Ontario and Nova Scotia bars since 1980. She is a member of the Board of Directors of Second Harvest (Toronto) and is active as a mentor through the Women’s Executive Network.
Jane McDow is Senior Director Legal Services, Associate General Counsel & Assistant Secretary for Sobeys Inc. and Assistant Secretary for various other subsidiaries of Empire Company Limited and Sobeys Inc. She provides legal services to Sobeys national departments and is responsible for management of Sobeys intellectual property and management of the record-keeping and regulatory filing aspects of the corporate secretarial function for Empire and Sobeys.
Ms. McDow began at Sobeys in 1990 has worked within the Sobeys legal department since 1994.
Ms. McDow holds a Bachelor of Science degree from University of King’s College, a Master of Business Administration degree from Saint Mary’s University and a Bachelor of Laws degree from Dalhousie University.
For more information about Empire Company Limited, please visit www.empireco.ca.