// Iceland MD Richard Walker is taking over his father’s role of executive chairman at the business
// Malcolm Walker will stay on the board as founder
Richard Walker has been appointed executive chairman of Iceland Foods, taking over from his father Malcolm Walker, who is stepping down from the role, The Grocer has reported.
Malcolm will remain on the board as founder after launching the family-owned frozen food retailer back in 1970.
Richard, who has been MD since 2018, running the business alongside Iceland chief executive and co-owner Tarsem Dhaliwal, will also take over as chair of the Iceland Foods Charitable Foundation, which turns 50 this year.
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“Richard is really looking forward to presiding over the executive board while continuing to fulfil his direct responsibilities for Iceland,” an Iceland spokeswoman told The Grocer.
He joined Iceland 11 years ago, first working on the shop floor, and as a store manager in Twickenham, before moving into head office roles at the business.
Back in October, Richard Walker launched a bid to become a Conservative MP.
There is no guarantee that Walker, who has become one of the retail industry’s most vocal campaigners, will be selected to stand for a seat at this stage.
He must now apply to be shortlisted for a seat and wait to see if one becomes available before the next general election.
Walker has taken a stand on many social, environmental and political issues from sustainability to the cost-of-living crisis.
Last year he joined the government’s business council and said that “having a seat at the table will enable business leaders to support government in its ambitions to bolster our economy while levelling up, confront issues facing our sector, make sustainable choices and future-proof our business landscape”.