Plymouth-based cheese producer Sartori Co. has transitioned into its fourth generation of family leadership.
The company announced Wednesday that Bert Sartori, executive vice president of sales and marketing, has been promoted to president. He succeeds Jeff Schwager, who will take over as chief executive officer while third-generation CEO and owner Jim Sartori transitions to chair of the board.
Bert Sartori, who is the son of Jim Sartori, joined the company as production supervisor in in January 2016 and was promoted to executive vice president of sales one year later.
He initially worked for Sartori as a national accounts manger from 2010 to 2013, before a two-year stint as general manager of Boulder, Colorado-based food and beverage company Blue Moose of Boulder, according to his LinkedIn profile.
"I want to thank my father, our team members, our family farms and our customers for being part of our family," he said. "It is energizing to take on this new leadership role while we have the business in such a healthy position."
Jim Sartori has led the company since 1986, after taking the reins from his father Joe Sartori. Jim's grandfather, Paolo Sartori started the business in 1939.
"In 1986 when my father, Joe, handed me the keys to Sartori Cheese, I remember how significant that moment was for both of us," he said. "It became my driving passion to, one day, be able to pass on this vital and growing business to my children. My dad and my grandpa, Paolo, would be very proud today."
Maria Sartori is also involved in the company as brand ambassador.
Jeff Schwager has served as the president of Sartori since 2009. With more than 20 years of global executive experience, he has led the company through significant growth and strategic initiatives, including retail branding and worldwide distribution, according to a news release.
The company said "expertise and guidance" from Schwager and Jim Sartori will remain critical amid the transition process.
Bert Sartori holds an MBA from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, is a licensed cheesemaker, and has more that 15 years of progressive experience in finance, operations and business development. As executive vice president of sales and marketing, his team led Sartori to sustained growth in all segments of the business, according to the release.
"Looking ahead, we want to continue our mission of striving to 'Make the Best Cheese in the World' by investing in our team members, constantly innovating and holding true to our core values," said Sartori. "Success to me is when I can pass along our cheesemaking traditions to generation five of the Sartori family and continue to brighten the day of people across the world by creating and serving great cheese like BellaVitano and MontAmoré."