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R. Stephen Stagner became the Company's Chief Operating Officer in January 2005 as a result of the merger between Mattress Firm and his former Mattress Firm franchise, Elite Management Team, or Elite. From February 2006 until his promotion in February 2010, Mr. Stagner served as the Company's Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. He was promoted to President and Chief Executive Officer in February 2010 and has served as a Director of the Company since February 2010. From 1996 to 2004, Mr. Stagner was the Chief Executive Officer of Elite. Mr. Stagner has 20 years of experience in the bedding industry, including employment with mattress manufacturers Sealy Corporation and Simmons Bedding Company, and owning and operating the largest franchise in the Mattress Firm network while with Elite. Mr. Stagner has also served in various capacities with the Mattress Firm Foundation, including as its President since January 2011 and director from January 2007 until December 2010. Since October 2009, Mr. Stagner has served as director of Rousche College of Business Advisory Council at Stephen F. Austin State University. Mr. Stagner's experience as the Company's President and Chief Executive Officer, and formerly his experience as Chief Operating Officer, coupled with his in-depth knowledge of the Company's industry, led to the conclusion that he should serve as a director of the Company.
Kenneth E. Murphy III has been appointed to the previously vacant role of chief operating officer overseeing sales and operations, marketing, merchandising, information technology, business development and supply chain. Murphy has more than 15 years experience with Mattress Firm. He became the Company's executive vice president, sales and operations, in 2010 after holding various positions within Mattress Firm, including regional vice president of sales, vice president of field and talent management, director of training and recruiting and several field management positions. Murphy earned a Master of Education from the University of Pennsylvania and is an advisory board member for the Nelson Rusche College of Business at Stephen F. Austin State University, his alma mater.
Alexander S. Weiss was promoted to Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer in June 2014 and joined the Company as Senior Vice President of Finance in April of 2013. From September 2008 to April 2013, Mr. Weiss served as Associate and then Vice President of Barclays Bank PLC. From July 2004 to September 2008, Mr. Weiss served as Analyst and then Associate at Lehman Brothers Inc., where he served on the Investment Banking Global Advisory Committee. Mr. Weiss has experience in a wide range of Investment Banking disciplines, including Mergers and Acquisitions, Debt and Equity Offerings, Strategic Analysis and Corporate Advisory, with a focus on the bedding sector.
Karrie Forbes became the Company's Executive Vice President, Marketing effective January 15, 2012. Prior to this appointment, she served as the Company's Vice President of Marketing for four years. Ms. Forbes is responsible for the strategic direction of the marketing, advertising and communication. Ms. Forbes joined a Mattress Firm franchise in 1997 and held positions of increasing responsibility in sales, customer service, recruiting, training and advertising through 2005, when she joined Mattress Firm as Director of Merchandising. Ms. Forbes also serves on the advisory board with the Better Sleep Council and Clear Channel Radio Houston. Ms. Forbes is married to Matthew Forbes, the Company's Divisional Vice President of Operations.
Craig McAndrews was promoted to Executive Vice President, Retail Concept Development in February 2012, and is responsible for the development and testing of alternate retail operating formats and continued franchise development. Prior to this position, Mr. McAndrews served as Vice President of Merchandising from February 2010 until his promotion and Regional Sales Manager from February 2009 to February 2010. Before joining Mattress Firm, Mr. McAndrews was the owner and director of Innovative Retail Group from 2003 to 2009. From 1999 until 2003, he was President of a Mattress Firm franchise, which he had co-founded. Previously, he was Vice President of Sales at Simmons Bedding Company.
Bruce Levy became the Company's Vice President, Real Estate and Construction in January 2009 to focus on continuing the Company's nationwide expansion, and was promoted to Executive Vice President, Real Estate and Construction in September 2012. From 2005 until the time he joined Mattress Firm, Mr. Levy was a Limited Partner at Interface Properties, Inc., having been involved with locating land and developing multi-tenant retail buildings. Mr. Levy has over 25 years of experience as a senior officer of several Fortune 500 companies in the real estate and construction sector, including the Office Depot, Inc., Blockbuster L.L.C., Gateway, Inc., Tweeter Home Entertainment Group, Inc. and PETCO Animal Supplies, Inc. Mr. Levy's experience includes opening retail stores throughout the United States, Europe and Asia.
Kindel L. Elam joined Mattress Firm in July 2012 as Vice President and General Counsel, responsible for providing guidance on legal compliance and responsibility. From 2004-2012, Ms. Elam worked at Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P. where she served as Senior Associate for the last two years. During that time period, Ms. Elam spent one year on secondment in Tokyo, Japan with Mitsui & Co., Ltd., a Japanese trading company traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. Ms. Elam has experience in a wide range of legal activities, including mergers and acquisitions, public and private securities transactions and finance.
Cathy Hauslein became the Company's Senior Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer in April 2014. From 2007 until April 2014, Ms. Hauslein served as Vice President and Corporate Controller for Susser Holdings Corp. and Susser Petroleum Partners LP, where she managed a staff of over 150 employees. She served as Vice President and Controller for BancTec Inc. from 2001 to 2007. Prior to that, Ms. Hauslein held positions as Corporate Controller for Darling International and Regional Controller for Lennox International. Ms. Hauslein started her career with KPMG, LLP. Ms. Hauslein is a certified public accountant.
Sam Woods has been appointed to senior vice president of sales and operations, succeeding Ken Murphy. Woods grew up in the furniture industry and joined Mattress Firm almost 17 years ago as a franchisee. After selling his franchise back to Mattress Firm in 2000, Woods held a variety of roles, including district sales manager, regional sales manager, regional vice president of sales and, most recently, divisional vice president of sales and operations. Woods graduated from Rhodes College with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a minor in Philosophy.
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