John J. Sullivan will be stepping down from his current role as President & CEO. His role will be filled by Food Industry Executive, Carl Gerlach effective immediately.
Sullivan has worked for Norseland, Inc./TINE SA and the Norwegian Dairy Farmers for more than 32 years. Having served in many positions of Sales, Marketing, Executive Management, and Board Member, Sullivan has been President & CEO for over 17 years. During this span, Norseland, Inc. has grown from a Sales and Marketing organization to a structured end-to-end dairy company. Sullivan stated, “The privilege of leading Norseland, Inc. for our owners, the Norwegian Dairy Farmers, has been an incredible journey. Our owners have been very supportive throughout my tenure,” says John Sullivan. Sullivan’s leadership transition has been in the planning process for a long period of time and he will take on the role of Strategic Advisor to the CEO of TINE SA, and Chairman of the Board for Norseland Inc, Gunnar Hovland.
“We are very pleased that Carl Gerlach has accepted the position as CEO of our subsidiary in the U.S. His food industry experience provides us with skills to further build Norseland, Inc. Under Carl’s leadership, we will continue to strengthen our position, drive further growth and build Jarlsberg®’s solid brand position in our largest market outside Norway,” says Gunnar Hovland.
Gerlach comes to Norseland, Inc. with extensive experience in the Food Industry, spending most of his career in the dairy industry. He has held several senior roles leading businesses at Kraft Foods, Sara Lee, Unilever, and most recently as Chief Executive Officer of Maple Hill Creamery, America’s fasted growing grass-fed organic dairy brand.
“It is a privilege to be leading Norseland at this time in its history. John has built a solid team and business, and I look forward to working with them, our customers, and partners across the globe as we drive further growth. There are very few global brands as strong as Jarlsberg®, and I know it has what consumers want in the U.S. market,” commented Gerlach.
“I would like to use this opportunity to thank John for his considerable efforts and tireless commitment for over 30 years at Norseland. Jarlsberg® is TINE’s strongest International brand and our American subsidiary is crucial to securing our market position abroad. Norseland, Inc. will continue to be an International growth platform to build the TINE brands which the Norwegian dairy farmers have invested in for decades. This change further supports TINE’s long-term commitment to Norseland Inc. and the Jarlsberg® brand,” Hovland concludes.
Norseland, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of TINE SA, Norway’s largest cooperative of dairy farmers. Originally formed in 1978 to import Jarlsberg® wheels to the US, Norseland now represents a diverse portfolio of both owned and partner specialty food brands. Norseland, Inc. uses traditional recipes and generations of farming knowledge to bring real food to your table. But they know 21st-century food isn’t just about the taste…they aim to contribute to a global food future that is ethically produced, sustainable, and good for you.