KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Associated Wholesale Grocers, Inc. (AWG) announced the winners to several prestigious member awards as part of its release of its Annual Report. Highlighting the award winners are Lou Fox Community Service Award Winners Jim Brown, of Doc’s Food Stores, Inc., and Store Manager of the Year, Donna Madere-Dickerson, of Rouse’s Enterprises, L.L.C.
The Lou Fox Award is given each year in honor of Lou Fox, General Manager and President of AWG from 1955 until 1983. The recipient is an AWG member retailer that displays outstanding leadership, commitment to their community and upholds the values of AWG. Jim operates twelve successful stores in the greater Tulsa area of Oklahoma. Jim has served in various ways, including being the founding member of the Bixby Education Endowment Foundation 50 years ago. He also served on the YMCA board and the New Facility Fund Raising committee to raise $3 million for a new family facility. He also led the Bixby
Football Booster Club, serving as president and member of the Bixby Chamber of Commerce, the OFI-CRS
Board, and the National Grocers Association (NGA) Board. In 2001, Jim received the NGA “Spirit of
America,” and again in 2018, he received NGA’s highest award for government and public affairs, “The Clarence G. Adamy Great American Award.” Jim’s passion for education is seen through generous support to Bixby Schools’ education and fine arts departments and a scholarship established through the Oklahoma Grocers Association as a founding member from 1990 to 2020. He is also a perennial sponsor of First Tee of Tulsa, promoting character development and life-enhancing values through youth golf. Jim is very active in the work, outreach, and fellowship of Asbury Methodist Church, where he is a member.
“Jim has always seen his most prominent role in the community is to help families,” David Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of AWG said. “He has been passionate about giving back through supporting education, community services, and general benevolence. It’s a great privilege for us to recognize great independent grocers that are also distinguished community supporters.”
The AWG Store Manager of the Year is given annually to the store manager or director within the cooperative membership that best demonstrated excellence in leadership and extraordinary store operations. “The winner of this year’s award is really a special kind of leader, and you can see why everyone on her team loves her”, said Smith.
During the five years Donna Madere-Dickerson has been with Rouses as a Store Director, she has operated four different high-volume locations. Currently, she manages Rouses in Baton Rouge, LA. One of Donna’s strengths is developing strong, highly effective teams. She has been very successful in staying well-staffed through the pandemic and Hurricane Ida. She lives by the belief that your associates will want to work with you if they are treated well and feel wanted. Under her leadership, Rouses has built great relationships with the local community by partnering with LSU Athletics food drives, WBRZ news station food drives and blood drives, and partners with The Shepherd’s Market Food Pantry, helping neighbors in need.
“Donna is a ‘Can Do – Will Do’ leader,” Jeff Zerweck, Rouses Regional Director of Operations said. “She leads her team with this mentality. When talking to her team, you can see how they embrace her and her vision. Donna is all about teaching, training, supporting, and pushing her team to be the best every day. This shows in her store conditions and the leadership team she has built. She is always there for support, pushing for sales, and creating the next great leader.”
Valu Merchandisers Company (VMC), a subsidiary of AWG, awarded its Excellence Award to Harps in Greenbrier, Ark. owned by Harp’s Food Stores, Inc. Harps sets a great example of merchandising excellence and are leaders and best in class in running successful and profitable non-food and specialty programs.
AWG also announced winners of 13 additional awards through each department. Those winners include:
- AWG Brands – Hays Cash Saver in Henderson, Tenn. owned by Dyer Foods, Inc.
- Produce (two winners)
- Greer’s in Mobile, Ala. owned by Autry Greer & Sons, Inc.
- H.G. Hill in Pleasant View, Tenn. owned by S & C Foods, Inc.
- Bakery (two winners)
- Homeland in Duncan, Okla. owned by HAC, Inc.
- Van Til’s Supermarket in Hammond, Ind. owned by Van Til’s Supermarket, Inc.
- Food Service – Tony’s Fresh Market in Berwyn, Ill. owned by Tony’s Finer Foods Enterprises, Inc.
- Floral – Super Saver in Grand Island, Neb. owned by B & R Stores, Inc.
- Seafood – Hen House in Prairie Village, Kan. owned by Four B Corp.
- Center Store – Hardy Cash Saver in Hardy, Ark. owned by Bill’s Super Foods, Inc.
- Meat – Checkers in Lawrence, Kan. owned by Hillcrest Foods, Inc.
- Merchandising Event (two winners)
- Crest in Oklahoma City, Okla. owned by Crest Discount Foods, Inc.
- Ptacek’s in Prescott, Wis. owned by Ptacek IGA, Inc.
- Omnichannel – Reasor’s in Tulsa, Okla. owned by Brookshire Grocery Co.
ABOUT ASSOCIATED WHOLESALE GROCERS, INC.
Associated Wholesale Grocers, Inc. (AWG) is the nation’s largest cooperative food wholesaler to independently owned supermarkets, serving over 1,100 member companies and over 3,200 locations throughout 28 states from 9 full-line wholesale Divisions. The consolidated sales for AWG are $10.8 billion. In addition to its cooperative wholesale operations, the company also operates subsidiary companies which provide certain real estate and supermarket development services, print and digital marketing services, health and beauty care, general merchandise, pharmaceutical products, specialty foods, and natural and organic products. For more information, visit AWGinc.com and follow @AWGCorporate on Twitter.