Allan Leighton has led tributes to former Somerfield marketing director Jill Keen, who passed away on 27 May.

Keen led Somerfield’s marketing from 2007 to 2010. She had worked in retail and grocery for 36 years at companies including Sainsbury’s, Asda and Mattessons.

“Jill was a tough cookie and a real fighter but also one of the smartest people I know and behind the gruff exterior was a woman who really cared about people,” Leighton said. “She will really be missed by all those she touched.”

Keen died peacefully, surrounded by her family, in hospital in Bath. She is survived by her husband John Gray and their two daughters.

A message left on LinkedIn said: “She lived her life to the full and enjoyed a successful career. More importantly she had an enthusiasm for everything she did that rubbed off on all her colleagues. She will be missed by many.”