The 41-year-old has won the post of senior vice president and general counsel at the grocery store chain.

While Appel acknowledges big differences between lumber and produce, he points out that there are similarities, nevertheless. Winn-Dixie operates more than 1,000 stores–primarily in the Southeast–while Home Depot has over 1,400 stores nationwide. The two companies also face many of the same legal issues, such as real estate (site selection and development), human resources, and regulatory matters.