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UPDATE: StarKist names Sam Hwi Lee new company president and CEO

The U.S. based StarKist Co., owner of the StarKist Samoa cannery, announced yesterday that Sam Hwi Lee has been named the company’s new president and CEO following last week’s meeting of the StarKist board of directors.


Lee has been a board member of StarKist since 2008 and last November he became interim president following the resignation of In-Soo Cho.


JaeChul Kim, chairman of South Korean based Dongwon Industries and owner of StarKist, said Lee “has shown great passion and expertise during the interim period, and we have high expectations for him and the StarKist team.”


Lee, who will be based at the company’s Pittsburgh, Pa headquarters, said StarKist is one of the most recognized brands in America, and StarKist is a leader in the seafood industry.


“I look forward to working closely with our dedicated team of associates in the United States, as well as in other parts of the world including American Samoa and Ecuador," said Lee in the company’s news release. "Together, we will build upon this company's rich legacy to grow our business."


Lee joins at a time when StarKist will be celebrating it’s 50th anniversary and planning is underway at StarKist Samoa for this event.


Lee, who holds a Ph.D. in food science and additional educational experience in business, has more than 30 years of expertise in the consumer packaged goods food industry, according to information provided by StarKist.


He has held leadership positions among some of the largest global food manufacturers, including Dole Food Company, Nestle USA and Nestle Korea, where he held the President’s position.  Lee has managed and significantly increased the business of some of the world's most highly respected household names, including Taster's Choice Coffee, Nestle Hot Chocolate and Kit Kat.