Craig S. Bahner

Image of Craig Bahner
Craig S. Bahner
Sara Lee Frozen Bakery
Committees: Advancement

Craig Bahner is the chief executive officer of Sara Lee Frozen Bakery, based in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois. Mr. Bahner has led the establishment and development of this new, stand-alone company since its business assets were purchased by private equity firm Kohlberg & Co. from Tyson Foods.

Previously, Mr. Bahner was president of Morning Foods at Kellogg Company, leading this key Kellogg business from 2015-17. In this role, Mr. Bahner delivered a dramatic profitability improvement on the business while improving operational excellence and implementing enterprise-level growth and profit initiatives.  

Prior to Kellogg, he was chief marketing officer of The Wendy's Company from 2012-15. Mr. Bahner led the brand turnaround, completely transforming the Wendy’s brand including positioning, brand identity, menu vision and product pipeline, as well as breakthrough digital marketing campaigns. 

Before joining Wendy’s, Mr. Bahner spent 20 years with global consumer giant The Procter & Gamble Company in a variety of leadership roles. From 2006-11, he was vice president of North America Retail Hair, where he rejuvenated a stagnant category by optimizing the brand portfolio and delivering record margins and profits. From 2002-06, he was vice president of Northeast Asia Fabric & Home Care, located in Japan. Under his leadership, this business doubled sales and tripled profit via organic growth, new brand launches and acquisitions. Prior to this role, he consistently moved into positions of increasing responsibility in Procter & Gamble’s brand management organization.

Mr. Bahner is a graduate of The Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business, where he is a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council and a recipient of the 2017 Global Business Excellence Alumni Award.  Mr. Bahner is also a trustee of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption.

Outside of work, Mr. Bahner is an avid aviator, holding an Airline Transport Pilot certificate.