MINNEAPOLIS — Former McDonald’s corporate relations head Jano Cabrera has been named chief communications officer of General Mills.

In the new role, Cabrera is responsible for communications strategy, corporate brand, employee and executive communications, as well as product brand PR and crisis communications.

He replaces Mary Lynn Carver, who stepped down from the position in July after four years in the job. He joins the company at a pivotal time in its 163-year history, operating under the watch of CEO Jeff Harmening, who has a particular focus on modernizing the company.

Cabrera is veteran of the communications industry, having held top-tier jobs on both the client and agency sides of the business as well as in politics.

He spent most of the last four years at McDonald’s, where he served as senior VP of corporate relations. At the fast food giant, he focused on strengthening the company's brand reputation, driving consumer engagement and overseeing global media relations.

He left that position in April, two months after Michael Gonda was named the company's VP of global comms.

Before McDonald's, Cabrera had an eight-year career at Burson-Masteller, which he capped off as the agency’s worldwide VP. Earlier experience includes launching and running his own firm, Carthage Group Communications.

Political work included working in Baghdad as a senior media advisor for the National Democratic Institute and serving as the Democratic National Committee’s communications director.