Moving up the Publix corporate ladder

Meriann Metz, a longtime in-house lawyer for Publix, was promoted to vice president, general counsel and secretary in 2019.

She says that one of the perks to her new role is working directly with the Publix leadership team, and retail associates alike.

“The more time I spend with both groups the more excited I am for the future of our company,” Metz says.

Born and raised in the Tampa Bay area, Metz attended the University of South Florida and Stetson University’s College of Law. She still lives in Tampa.

Like many other Florida natives she has fond memories of Publix from childhood.

“One of my favorite childhood memories is going to our local Publix on Saturday mornings with my dad and brother to pick out doughnuts from the bakery,” she says.

Metz was drawn to the legal field to be intellectually challenged, but also to help people.

“Excellent lawyers should always be thinking about how they can serve their clients’ legal needs while providing value to their businesses,” she says. “And the challenges we face in practice are as varied as the clients themselves.”

Before joining the Publix in-house legal team in 2006, Metz was an attorney with the Lowndes Drosdick law firm in Orlando.

“From my first day with Publix it was evident that our in-house legal department was a true business partner, designed to serve and protect the company,” she says. “In that sense, going from a law firm to the Publix legal team felt like a natural transition for me.”

After being with the company for 13 years, she says she still arrives at work each day feeling a sense of pride and excitement.

“One of the things I love about Publix is that you don’t have to look hard to find decades-long loyalty from both its associates and its customers,” she says. “Every day is so different. Some days, I might spend the bulk of my time with the legal department team members. Other days, it’s spent with Publix leadership. Then other days, I might be working directly with team members from departments as varied as food safety, pharmacy, manufacturing and grocery.”

While she emphasizes she loves working with all the varied groups, there’s one she loves just a smidge more.

“Any department where an ice cream tasting might be involved is always going to be a favorite,” she says.

From a legal perspective, the job stays interesting because of the variety of issues the legal team gets to work on.

“The most interesting thing about Publix though, is our employee ownership. I think that is one of the secrets to our success,” Metz says. ♦

Meriann Metz’s ‘Pub Sub’ order

Turkey and cheddar on white bread. “Especially with some cranberry sauce during the holidays.”

You May Also Like

Girl Scouts of West Central Florida names honorees for 2024 Women of Distinction

Girl Scouts of West Central Florida have named six Tampa Bay women who will be honored at its annual Women of Distinction Luncheon on International Women’s Day, March 8, 2024,

The Cake Girl to begin franchising in the New Year

For Kristina Lavallee, life keeps getting sweeter. Founder and namesake of local dessert company, The Cake Girl, Lavallee’s rise to success is already a sweet tale. Well-known, around the Tampa

St. Petersburg’s Studio620 announces leadership transition

Studio@620 has named Erica Sutherlin as the incoming artistic executive director, as a part of the planned transition for when founder Bob Devin Jones steps down from the role, in

A St. Petersburg woman is Leaping with love for cancer patients

It was the lamp with the frog that caught her attention, first, as Vanessa Bernard sat in the waiting room for her first oncology appointment. A frog picture awaited her,

Other Posts

B2 Communications co-founder Missy Hurley named agency’s CEO

Missy Hurley, a co-founder of the public relations agency B2 Communications, has acquired co-founder Kyle Parks’ shares of the company, becoming the sole owner and chief executive officer of the

Eventing Tampa Bay named ‘Best Event Planner’ by Guide to Florida

Eventing Tampa Bay has been named the ‘Best Event Planner’ by Guide to Florida, in its annual Best of Florida publication. Best of Florida is an annual collection of the

BayCare’s vision and the values of health care is what drew CEO to role

Like many who choose medical professions, for new BayCare Health Systems chief executive officer Stephanie Conners, the occupation is the calling.  Conners began her career as a nurse, keeping her

Exclusive: Girl Scouts of West Central Florida Announces 2023 Women of Distinction honorees

Girl Scouts of West Central Florida has named six Tampa Bay women who will be honored at its annual Women of Distinction Luncheon, on March 10, 2023, at Armature Works.