Dairy Queen names new CEO

Dairy Queen names new CEO

EDINA Minn. John Gainor has been named president and chief executive of International Dairy Queen, effective July 1. He succeeds Charles Mooty, 47, who is retiring after 21 years with the company.

Gainor, 51, joined IDQ in 2003 as chief supply chain officer. His promotion is part of IDQ’s succession plan, according to a company statement. Mooty said he would remain chairman until the end of the year to help in the leadership transition.

Mooty joined Dairy Queen as administrator of special projects in 1987, shortly after finishing graduate school, said Dean Peters, IDQ's director of communications. He served in a variety of roles over the years, including chief financial officer, before being named president and CEO in 2001.

He told employees and franchisees in a memo on Tuesday that he had always intended to turn over CEO duties to someone else after a few years.

"I felt that my personal knowledge of the people, company and system offered a unique ability to make significant changes for the betterment of all connected. However, I also recognized that my time to add value should be limited and eventually it would make sense to pass the baton to someone with even greater talent," Mooty said in the memo.

The Mooty family has been invested in Dairy Queen since 1970s, Peters said. Mooty's father, John W. Mooty, was chairman when company was acquired by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. in 1998.

IDQ franchises 5,674 Dairy Queen units in the United States, Canada and 20 other countries.