SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) — An independent and family-owned Shreveport pharmaceutical company that ranks among the largest in the country has named a new CEO.

Morris & Dickson Co., L.L.C. announced Monday that veteran healthcare industry leader Jody Hatcher will be the next Chief Executive Officer, effective Thursday, April 15.

Hatcher most recently served as President of supply chain services for Vizient, the largest healthcare performance improvement company in the country. Before that, he was President and CEO of Novation, which became part of Vizient in 2015.

Morris & Dickson Chairman Paul Dickson has decided to retire from the day-to-day management of the company.

“This is exciting transformational change for our 180-year-old company. We look forward to developing a new and better model for the healthcare supply chain,” Dickson said in a statement released Monday.

“It’s an honor to lead a company that plays such a crucial role in our country’s healthcare system and has an unparalleled track record of success,” Hatcher said. “I am eager to meet and listen to our employees, customers, and manufacturer partners to ensure that we continue to meet the challenges of a dynamic healthcare landscape.”

The Shreveport-based company distributes brand, generic, and specialty pharmaceuticals, as well as over-the-counter and home health products to independent retail pharmacies, alternate care entities, and health systems.

Morris & Dickson has grown to become the fourth largest pharmaceutical distributor in the country. The company says its distribution operations and headquarters will remain in Shreveport.