NEW YORK — James R. Chambers has been named president and chief operating officer of Weight Watchers International, Inc., effective Jan. 4, 2013.  In this new role, Mr. Chambers will oversee the company’s global business operations, including all domestic and international meetings and businesses. He will report to David P. Kirchhoff, chief executive officer of the company.

Mr. Chambers has more than 30 years of general management, cross-functional operational management and executive leadership experience in varied consumer-focused global industries, most recently as president of the U.S. Snacks and Confectionary business unit and general manager of the Immediate Consumption Channel of Kraft Foods Inc. Earlier, he held various roles in the North America business unit of Cadbury P.L.C., including as president and c.e.o. He began his career at Nabisco, Inc. and also held various executive positions with Remy Cointreau, Paxonix Inc.,, Inc. and Information Resources, Inc.

Mr. Chambers received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering at Princeton University and a master’s degree in business administration at the Wharton School of Business of the University of Pennsylvania.

“We are very excited to bring Jim’s management expertise, strategic mindset and operational prowess, along with his extensive leadership experience in consumer driven businesses, to Weight Watchers,” Mr. Kirchhoff said. “We believe Jim’s operational focus, along with his unique consumer and business insights from his prior experiences, will help ensure and further the achievement of our long-term strategic growth initiatives.”