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Six food industry leaders honored at FMI event

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ORLANDO, Fla. — FMI – the Food Industry Association, recognized six executives with leadership awards at its recent Midwinter Executive Conference here.

The industry leaders honored were Neal Berube of Associated Food Stores, Jonathan Mayes of Albertsons Cos., Steve Cahillane of Kellogg Co., Mike Stone of Mollie Stone’s Markets, Todd Schnuck of Schnuck Markets Inc. and Norman Mayne of Dorothy Lane Market Inc.

“From inflation and supply chain challenges to federal mandates and COVID-cautious consumers, food industry executives had the responsibility to navigate a barrage of new and complex issues throughout the last 24 months,” said FMI president and chief executive officer Leslie Sarasin. “Their forward-thinking solutions and refined expertise were crucial drivers of the industry’s resilience through turbulent times.”

Neal Berube, retired president and CEO of Associated Food Stores (AFS), received FMI’s Herbert Hoover Award for Humanitarian Service.

Berube worked diligently to ensure the needs of shoppers and associates were not only met but exceeded. His people-first approach to executive management is what helped AFS reach historic levels of profitability. Berube continued to work in pursuit of the common good outside his day job, serving on the boards for Intermountain Healthcare and McKay Dee Hospital in Utah. Berube also serves as the mayor of North Ogden City, Utah.

Mayes, retired senior vice president and external affairs and chief diversity officer at Albertsons Cos., received the Esther Peterson Award for Customer Service for his service over the past 31 years as chairman of the California Grocers Association and chairman of FMI’s Government Relations Committee, among many other roles. At Albertsons Mayes led the company’s efforts to advance a culture of diversity, equity and inclusion among its nearly 300,000 associates.

Cahillane, chairman and CEO of Kellogg, received FMI’s William H. Albers Industry Relations Award.

Since joining Kellogg in 2017, Cahillane has been instrumental in aligning the company’s impressive growth with its vision of a good and just world, where people are not just fed but fulfilled, FMI said. Cahillane and his snacks, frozen and cereal company have also made significant social and environmental commitments as part of the company’s Better Days ESG strategy to strive for sustainable and equitable access to food for all.

Stone, president and CEO of Mollie Stone’s Markets, received FMI’s Robert B. Wegman Award for Entrepreneurial Excellence.

Striving to live up to his company’s slogan, “Making a difference in people’s lives through food,” Stone implemented a community-first approach to his San Francisco Bay Area-based company, FMI said. By partnering with local farms and artisan brands, Mollie Stone’s actively uplifts its local economy, while guaranteeing fresh, healthy and affordable products to its customers. Stone and Mollie Stone’s Markets have also donated needed resources to hospitals, food banks, schools, first responders and various non-profits, such as financial support, PPE, food, volunteers and customer match programs.

Schnuck, chairman and CEO of Schnuck Markets, received the Glen P. Woodard, Jr. Award for Public Affairs. Schnuck has devoted himself and the business to nourishing people’s lives, not just by helping them feed their families but also by making a measurable impact in their communities. For example, at a time when restaurants were shuttering their doors due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Schnucks responded with $200,000 worth of gift cards made available to Schnucks’ teammates to use at local restaurants. This unexpected stimulus allowed local restaurants to cover losses and expenses that resulted from the sudden loss of business. During Black History Month, Schnuck took a stand for equity and diversity when stores offered customers the opportunity to donate to the Urban League through the grocery chain’s Round Up at the Register program. Schnuck also plays an active role in his association, serving on the FMI board and multiple board-level committees, and as past chairman of FMI’s Public Affairs Committee.

Mayne, CEO of Dorothy Lane Market, received FMI’s Sidney R. Rabb Award.

Dorothy Lane Market’s success as a three-store independent operator with 1,000 valued employees is a testament to Mayne’s fiery, innovative spirit and ironclad commitment to customer satisfaction. As CEO, he led the charge to create Club DLM in 1995, a hyper-targeted store loyalty program that has customers consistently coming back for more. Mayne has served on FMI’s board since 1995, and in 2013 he was recognized with the FMI Robert B. Weg­man Award.

Sarasin also recognized the entire industry with a 2021 Esther Peterson Award.


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