The Hershey Co. has named Michele Buck executive v.p., chief operating officer, effective immediately.

In her new executive role, Buck will now oversee the company's global supply chain, sales, marketing, innovation, research and development, and consumer and shopper analytics and insights capabilities. She will continue to lead Hershey's day-to-day North America operations, as well as taking on operations in Central and South America.

Buck will continue reporting to John Bilbrey, chairman of the board, president, and ceo.

"Michele has worked closely with me for the past eight years as a partner and collaborator on the global growth strategies we are now pursuing,” says Bilbrey. “She is a seasoned and trusted executive who consistently delivers results. Her combination of industry, retail and consumer knowledge uniquely qualifies her to drive Hershey’s operating priorities. I have tremendous confidence in Michele's ability to build on Hershey’s competitive advantages with leading practices and new technologies and tools that will extend Hershey’s market leadership into the next generation.”

She brings more than 25 years of experience in consumer packaged goods to her new role.

In her prior position as president, North America, Buck led the company's U.S. and Canadian businesses, which account for more than 85 percent of the company's annual revenue.

She also served as senior v.p., chief growth officer – where her primary focus was creating and driving transformational change – and as senior v.p., global chief marketing officer.

Before joining Hershey in 2005, Buck served 17 years at Kraft/Nabisco in numerous senior positions, as well as at the Frito-Lay devision of PepsiCo.

Buck serves on the Board of Directors at New York Life and as a benefit co-chair for the Children's Brain Tumor Foundation. She earned her bachelor's degree at Shippensburg University and holds an MBA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.