- Karen Roberts, the executive vice president and general counsel of Walmart, announced Tuesday that she is stepping down.
Roberts has held the EVP and GC role for 10 years at the multinational retailer following her promotion to the position in 2013, and she has worked for the company 27 years overall. Among her previous roles, she served as EVP and president — Walmart Realty for Walmart U.S.
- Roberts’ LinkedIn post announcing her plans to step away did not say when her departure becomes effective or who will be replacing her. Walmart did not immediately respond to a Legal Dive request for comment on Tuesday.
The person who replaces Roberts will step into the role leading the legal department at the No. 1 company in the Fortune 500 list.
Roberts said when she first joined Walmart in 1995 her plan was “to work for the company a few years and then move to greener pastures.”
But she said after a decade working for Walmart, she “fell in love with the company — its global footprint, fantastic purpose, servant leadership mindset, high ethical standards, and the people.”
“Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought a young girl from Hope, Arkansas, would end up as general counsel for the world’s largest company,” Roberts wrote on LinkedIn. “It says a lot about Walmart and the opportunity it has provided — for me and so many others.”
She said she was grateful for the many influential leaders who have invested in her professional development through the years.
“That’s what I will miss most as my time with Walmart comes to an end — the people, great leaders, and highly complex, intellectual, and interesting legal work,” Roberts wrote. “I am so proud of the group of professionals I’ve led and the work they do every day to support customers, members, and associates.”
Roberts’ other roles at Walmart included serving as senior vice president and chief compliance officer for Walmart U.S., as well as vice president and general counsel for U.S. real estate and construction.
“Karen’s legal background and previous responsibilities directing our U.S. compliance and real estate functions provide an important perspective for overseeing the complex legal issues we deal with every day in our business,” then-Walmart EVP Jeff Gearhart said when Roberts was appointed EVP and GC.
Roberts wrote on LinkedIn that she plans to spend more time with family, travel, as well as take time to remember old hobbies and discover new ones.
“I also plan on focusing on increasing my philanthropic work and drawing on my experiences to help companies in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors,” she wrote.