(Oct. 9) Southern Produce Distributors Inc., Faison, N.C., has named a new president to help it steer through bankruptcy reorganization.

Wayne Miller, who had been Southern’s general manager for three years, took the job in May, two months after the grower-shipper of sweet potatoes and other vegetables filed for Chapter 11 protection. He succeeds Stewart Precythe, who remains the company’s chief executive officer.

“Wayne has done a good job of helping me restructure the company,” Precythe said. “I’m third-generation. We wanted some new ideas and someone with major foodservice, chain store and international sales experience.”

Precythe said the company also promotedMiller because Precythe travels extensively in Louisiana and Mississippi, where the company also packs sweet potatoes.

Southern had packed Mississippi sweet potatoes out of its own facility in Vardaman, Miss. Now it packs in a facility owned by Alexander Farms, also of Vardaman.

“I felt like we needed somebody to be here when I’m not,” Precythe said.

Before joining Southern, Miller was the marketing director for the North Carolina Department of Agriculture. Before that, he was a regional vice president for retailer Big Star Foods, Raleigh, N.C.