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  10/27/05: Let the hosannas begin! We have a new chairman at the Federal Reserve Board. In one of the most anticlimactic announcements in recent memory, Ben S. Bernanke’s selection as the next Fed chief was made yesterday. This is most likely a good thing. There won’t be any partisan mud-slinging over the most important economic-policy position on earth, and this is quite a relief. What we really need to see is how Bernanke will deal with the multitude of policy questions that are now dogging the economy. Where does he stand on tax cuts, deficits and Social Security reform for instance? His predecessor was not shy in relaying his opinions to the general public. The word is that the new chief is a bit more shy and reticent. Of course, the real test will come when there is an unforeseen economic crisis. What should the new chief’s first order of business be? Perhaps he should call the head of the central bank of China. Given the growth of their economy and the fact that they hold a lot of our outstanding debt, he might be wise to keep them close.

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SAFEWAY (PLEASANTON, CA) Kelly Griffith was named president of the Safeway’s Portland division. Griffith was formerly corporate senior vice president of produce and floral. Griffith joined Safeway 25 years ago in the company’s Seattle Division.
THE MACERICH CO. (VICTORVILLE, CA) The Macerich Co. has promoted Michael Guzik to manager, property management at the Mall of Victor Valley.  He had been acting manager at the Victorville, Calif. regional mall since May. Guzik joined Macerich’s Santa Monica home office two years ago as an accounts receivable associate in the shared services department.
BJ’S WHOLESALE CLUB (NATICK, MA) BJ’s Wholesale Club announced the promotion of Alison Gregg Corcoran to executive vice president of member insight and marketing. In this newly created position, Corcoran will continue lead the company’s member insight and new club concepts initiatives and will assume responsibility for all of BJ’s marketing operations including membership acquisition and retention programs. Corcoran joined BJ’s Wholesale Club in 2003 as senior vice president, director of member insight.
WAL-MART STORES (BENTONVILLE, AR) Mark D. Goodman has joined Wal-Mart Stores as executive vice president of marketing and membership of the retailer’s Sam’s Club division. Goodman has served in several instrumental roles within McDonalds Corp., including serving as vice president of US strategy and operations.

PEET’S COFFEE & TEA (EMERYVILLE, CA) Peet’s Coffee & Tea, a specialty coffee retailer, announced the appointment of Christine (Chris) Lansing to chief marketing officer. She most recently served as vice president of marketing, global innovation for the Hershey Co. where she was responsible for the global design, development and commercialization of new confectionery products.

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