(Aug. 24) One of the major forces of change at Performance Food Group Co. has moved into the firm’s top management slot.

Steven Spinner, who has served as Performance Food’s president and chief operating officer, will become president and chief executive officer, effective Oct. 1.

Spinner, 46, also has served as senior vice president and chief executive of the company’s broadline unit.

He will succeed Robert Sledd, who will continue as company chairman.

Spinner got credit for having led Performance through a number of recent strategic initiatives, including the sale of Salinas, Calif.-based salad maker Fresh Express Inc. to Cincinnati-based Chiquita Brands International Inc.

“Steve has been a key member of our management team and has been instrumental in driving our company’s growth and initiatives over the past several years,” Sledd said Aug. 21 in a news release.

He credited Spinner and others in company management for having led the firm to $5.7 billion in sales in 2005.

“We will continue to execute our core strategies, and I am confident that we will drive steady long-term improvement in our business,” Spinner said in the news release.

Performance stock closed near its 52-week low of $25.45, recorded Jan. 6, at $25.85 Aug. 21 on the Nasdaq stock exchange. The stock peaked at $33.45 June 6.