Darden Restaurants names Caron first CMO

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Darden Restaurants, owner of the Red Lobster, Olive Garden, Longhorn Steakhouse and Capital Grille chains, has promoted John Caron to the newly created role of CMO. He was previously EVP of marketing for the Olive Garden brand.

Caron will report to Drew Madsen, COO of Darden. Caron is charged with driving development and implementation of an integrated brand strategy across the company's businesses, according to a company statement. Darden declined further comment.

"We created this position with an eye toward establishing a marketing structure that enables stronger integration, greater innovation and accelerated growth across all of the Darden brands," Madsen said in a statement.

Caron joined Olive Garden in April 2003.

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