The new top man for Starbucks in the UK is a former aide to president Bill Clinton, and holds the unique status of being the only person in the coffee trade to have been the role model for a character in a major TV series.
He is Kris Engskov, who joined the American coffee chain in 2003 as director of public policy and was most recently regional vice-president of its US Pacific Northwest region. He has worked for several years in the chain’s European offices, including a spell in England.
He was once employed as president Clinton’s personal aide, or ‘body man’ (they come from the same state). He is widely reported to be the inspiration for the character Charlie Young in The West Wing televison series – some press stories have said that he met with the actor who was to play the part, to give guidance and suggestions.
Kris Engskov takes over from Darcy Willson-Rymer, who is leaving Starbucks to ‘pursue another opportunity’. The new man has said that he is looking forward to moving to England in September.
Meanwhile, Forbes magazine has reported that Starbucks top man, Howard Schultz, has re-entered its list of billionaires, having regained the status after Starbucks shares began to fall in 2008. Sadly, he has only made it to no. 840 in the list.