TEWKSBURY, MASS. — Erica Hageman on July 26 joined WellPet, LLC, one of the leading premium natural pet food companies in North America, as its inaugural general counsel. Hageman will become the first general counsel at WellPet, tasked with helping the company navigate a path for growth and oversee all legal matters.

Most recently, Hageman served as general counsel at Interstate Hotels & Resorts, Inc., based in Arlington, Va. She was with Interstate for 12 years in various leadership roles, in which she oversaw the company’s acquisition of eight global companies and the eventual sale of Interstate itself. Earlier in her career, Hageman served as a litigation associate with Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellot in its Washington D.C. office.

Erica Hageman, general counsel at WellPet, LLCErica Hageman, general counsel at WellPet, LLC. (Photo courtesy of WellPet) 
"Erica joins us at a pivotal time for the company as we scale with a focus on better serving pets and pet parents in innovative ways,” said Reed Howlett, chief executive officer. “Erica will play a crucial role as our internal counsel, guiding us on all legal, compliance, and contractual matters on our path forward. Erica's impressive business and legal background will be vital to our company's next chapter and sustainable, thoughtful growth."

Hageman will work closely with Howlett and other senior leadership on strategic growth initiatives, including expanding into new categories and serving the incoming generation of pet owners, as well as handling legal matters such as compliance, intellectual property, contracts, employment law and litigation.

"I'm excited for this new opportunity to advance WellPet's goals to grow as a leader in the premium pet food category. Coming from a background in hospitality, I'm familiar with work that centers on the wellbeing of others, and I'm looking forward to applying that to the booming pet industry," Hageman said. "As a pet parent myself, I understand how deeply people care for their pets, and I look forward to working with the WellPet leadership team to ensure we continue supporting pet health and wellbeing."

The WellPet family of brands includes Wellness Natural Pet Food, WHIMZEES, Old Mother Hubbard, Eagle Pack, Holistic Select and Sojos. The company has been in business for more than 100 years.

Read more about personnel changes throughout the industry.