Imperial Distributors Announces Leadership Changes

Imperial Distributors is pleased to announce key organizational changes to its leadership team, effective April 1st. Michael Sleeper, who joined Imperial in 1964 and became President and Chief Executive Officer in 1970, will transition into the role of Executive Chairman of the Board. Michael’s entrepreneurial and visionary leadership and unwavering commitment to Imperial’s values have shaped Imperial’s success and influence in the industry. In his new role, he will continue to provide strategic guidance to the company’s board and management team. His wisdom and unparalleled experience will remain invaluable.

Joe Kirby, the current President of Imperial, will succeed Michael as the new CEO. Since joining Imperial in 2003, Joe has demonstrated exceptional leadership in a variety of roles in the organization. As CEO, Joe will leverage his deep industry expertise and dedication to operational efficiency and customer satisfaction to lead Imperial for long-term prosperity.

Naomi Sleeper, representing the third generation of the Sleeper family to lead Imperial, will assume the role of President and Chief Growth Officer. Having joined Imperial in 2013, Naomi has played a pivotal role in shaping the company’s strategic direction as Executive Vice President. With a focus on innovation, continuous improvement and sustainability, Naomi’s leadership will drive sales and growth to ensure the company’s lasting impact.

“As we embark on this new chapter in Imperial’s history, I am confident that Joe and Naomi, working in tandem, will continue to grow our company with vision and purpose,” remarked Michael Sleeper, Executive Chairman of Imperial. “I am excited for the journey ahead under their leadership.” Joe Kirby, incoming CEO of Imperial, commented, “I am honored to take on the role of CEO and grateful for the opportunity to lead Imperial’s talented team. Together, we will continue to drive success for our customers, team members, and stakeholders.”

Naomi Sleeper, newly appointed President and Chief Growth Officer, stated, “It is a privilege to uphold our company’s legacy. I am committed to building on our strong foundation and leveraging the strength of our team to seize new opportunities and achieve sustainable growth.” These organizational changes signify the company’s commitment to its tradition of excellence, enduring partnerships, and future prosperity.

Imperial Distributors’ mission is to create and deliver compelling merchandising and supply-chain solutions that strengthen our retailers and enhance the shoppers’ experience. Imperial has been recognized repeatedly by the Griffin Report as a Best Place to Work and by the Shelby Report for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and in 2023 by the Better Business Bureau of Central New England for Marketplace Excellence. Founded by Frank Sleeper in 1939, the company employs 700 team members and is headquartered in Worcester, Massachusetts.