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Newton-based sock maker names new CEO

Newton-based sockmaker GoldToeMoretz announced Monday that Hanesbrands executive Stephen Lineberger will join the company this month as president and chief operating officer.

As Hanesbrands' senior vice president and general manager of international business, Lineberger was responsible for the company's business operations in 11 countries in Europe, Asia, Canada and Latin America, and his appointment comes as the sock industry has been closing domestic plants and shifting production offshore. Lineberger had previously served as president and CEO of the Sara Lee underwear and sock divisions, overseeing brands such as Hanes and Champion.

Current GoldToeMoretz president Jim Williams, who spent 20 years as Gold Toe's CEO and the last two with its merged successor, will retire at the end of the year, chairman and CEO John Moretz said in a news release.

GoldToeMoretz employs 965 people, 780 in North Carolina, and had sales of $350 million last year. The company was formed in 2006 when Moretz merged with Burlington-based Gold Toe Brands.

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