Bergstrom and Kuehne replace Dr. Don Harden and John Underwood, members of the Executive Committee since 1985 and 1990, respectively, who have reached age 70, the mandatory retirement age under the Packers' bylaws.
Larry Weyers, new to the Executive Committee last year, was elected to replace Underwood as treasurer.
"We're delighted to bring these two outstanding people onto the Executive Committee," said Harlan in announcing the two additions. "John Bergstrom has served as chairman of the Packers' corporate marketing committee and Carl Kuehne just completed his term as chairman of the Packers' foundation committee. Both men have been successful in business and have been valuable leaders in the Packers organization through the years and possess skills that will help guide the team into a very challenging future."
The Packers' Executive Committee, elected from the team's board of directors, directs corporate management, approves major capital expenditures, establishes broad policy and monitors management's performance in conducting the business and affairs of the corporation. The seven-member committee now includes Bob Harlan, president; John Fabry, vice president; Peter Platten III, secretary; Larry Weyers, treasurer; and three at-large members, Don Schneider, John Bergstrom and Carl Kuehne.
Bergstrom, 58, currently serves as chairman and CEO of Bergstrom Corporation, a Neenah, Wis. company that owns and operates 23 automobile dealerships representing 25 different brands. The corporation employs 1,600 people in Wisconsin. One of the top 50 auto retailers in the United States, Time magazine in February 2003 named him the "Number One Quality Automotive Dealer" in the country. Bergstrom and his corporation have been recognized by many other organizations, including the Wall Street Journal, Arthur Young & Company, Association of Private Enterprise Education and Venture Magazine.
Originally elected to the Packers' board of directors in May 1995, Bergstrom chairs the organization's corporate marketing committee. He is a three-year honor graduate from Marquette University's School of Business and is a recipient of the University's 'Alumnus of the Year' award. He currently serves as the chairman of the board of trustees at Marquette, a position to which he was elected in 2003. He also serves on the board of directors at Kimberly-Clark Corporation, Wisconsin Energy Corporation, Midwest Airlines, Sensient Technologies Corporation, Banta Corporation and the Medical College of Wisconsin.
Kuehne, 63, currently is owner and CEO of American Foods Group, a food processing company headquartered in Green Bay. The company, which has operations in Ohio and South Dakota, in addition to Wisconsin, is on the Fortune 500 list of largest privately held companies in the nation. Kuehne is a member of the executive committee and board of directors of the American Meat Institute and served as the organization's chairman in 1996. In 1997, Kuehne was recognized by The National Provisioner as the 'Industry Executive of the Year.'
Kuehne originally was elected to the board of directors in August 1998 and serves on the directors affairs committee and recently chaired the Foundation committee. He attended Ripon College and received a B.S. degree in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison before graduating from UW Law School in 1966. Prior to his career in the meat industry, Kuehne practiced general law for 20 years in Green Bay and was a member of the Board of Governors of the State of Wisconsin Bar Association. Kuehne in 2001 received the 'Free Enterprise Award' from the Green Bay Rotary Club and serves on the board of trustees for the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. He is actively involved in many area community and civic organizations, including the Salvation Army, American Red Cross, Bellin Hospital and the Brown County Literacy Council.
The announcement marks the second consecutive year of change on the Executive Committee. Prior to the last year's departure of Jim Temp, the group had been together for 11 years.
Underwood, a retired banking president, first joined the Packers' board of directors June 1, 1986, and subsequently was elected to the Executive Committee as treasurer June 4, 1990. He will continue to serve as special counsel to the Executive Committee, and at the request of NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue will continue his appointment to the Special Committee on League Economics.
Underwood's continued NFL committee participation, along with Harlan (Management Council Executive Committee), John Jones (Stadium Committee) and Mike Sherman (Competition Committee), makes the Packers the only team with representation on four key NFL committees.
Underwood also spent the past year helping Weyers prepare for his new role as treasurer.
Harden, formerly an associate chancellor at UWGB and then president of the Bellin Foundation, first joined the Packers' board of directors June 4, 1984, and subsequently was elected to the Executive Committee Dec. 1, 1985.
Harlan saluted the outstanding service of both Harden and Underwood, saying, "They've been longtime members of the Executive Committee who have offered valued advice through the years and have always had the utmost interest in the continued success of the Packers."
Candidates named for board
In other proceedings Wednesday, the board of directors approved the nominations of six candidates to replace directors who have reached the mandatory retirement age and will take on emeritus status. The retiring directors are, in addition to Harden and Underwood, are Willie Davis, Dr. Thomas A. Manion, Paul J. Schierl and Allan H. "Bud" Selig. The six candidates, who will be voted upon by shareholders at the Annual Meeting, July 27, are:
– Daniel T. Ariens, President and CEO of Ariens Company, Green Bay.
– Ave M. Bie, a partner in Quarles and Brady Law Firm in Madison, Wis., formerly Chairwoman of the Public Service Commission (PSC) of Wisconsin. Bie is a Green Bay native.
– George F. Hartmann, retired executive, formerly with Georgia Pacific and Fort Howard, Green Bay.
– George F. Kerwin, President and CEO of Bellin Health, Green Bay.
– Michael D. Simmer, President of M&I Bank, Green Bay.
– Stephanie A. Streeter, Chairman, President and CEO of the Banta Corporation, Neenah, Wis. She is a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee Board of Directors and former captain of the Stanford University women's basketball team.