Starbucks names exec as new COO

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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John Culver
John Culver

A familiar face will be taking the reins at Starbucks as COO.

The coffee giant has promoted John Culver to COO and group president, North America. Culver joined Starbucks in 2002 and has led the company’s Starbucks International division for the past 15 years. Under his leadership, Starbucks International’s presence has grown to encompass more than 15,000 retail stores and more than 800,000 points of presence through channels outside of brick-and-mortar stores.

In addition, Michael Conway has been promoted to group president, international and channel development, and Michelle Burns has been promoted to executive VP, global coffee, tea and cocoa. Conway joined Starbucks in 2013 to lead channel development and, since that time, has gone on to lead Starbucks U.S. licensed stores and Canada businesses. In his new expanded role, he will oversee the retail business segment that includes all international markets outside of the U.S. and Canada. He’ll also lead the Starbucks global channel development business segment.

Burns leads Starbucks global coffee, tea and cocoa, with more than 26 years of experience at Starbucks. 

“As we plan for the 2022 fiscal year and beyond, Starbucks is fortunate to have a deep, talented and diverse team of senior executives we are able to tap to help lead us forward,” said Kevin Johnson, president and CEO, Starbucks. “These appointments support our growth at scale agenda to bring about predictable, sustainable growth for the long-term, as well as our commitments to being a people positive and planet positive company. I want to congratulate John, Michael and Michelle on their promotions and look forward to continuing to work with them closely.”

These changes are effective as of June 28, 2021.