McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) announced a change in leadership today, as Jan Fields, president of McDonald's USA, stepped down after more than 35 years with the company. She started as a crew member.

Fields' replacement is another longtime McDonald's veteran, current Global Chief Restaurant Officer Jeff Stratton, who began his career with McDonald's as a crew member more than 40 years ago. Stratton starts his new job Dec. 1.

Fields played a major role in the expansion of McDonald's McCafe beverage menu, and also led McDonald's transition to healthier menu alternatives in U.S. restaurants, including posting nutritional information.

In his new role, Stratton will report to COO Tim Fenton. Said Fenton in the company press release: "Jeff's roots in restaurant operations, his strong leadership and his innovative actions driving our Plan to Win framework, make him the right choice to lead the U.S. business." Stratton will lead the operations of McDonald's 14,000 U.S. restaurants.

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