KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Associated Wholesale Grocers (AWG) announced the winners to several prestigious internal awards as part of its release of its Annual Report. Highlighting the award winners are Lou Fox Community Service Award Winners Steve and Laura Edwards, of GES, Inc., and Store Manager of the Year, Gina Stennett, of Pyramid Foods.
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. Steve and Laura Edwards own 12 stores in Arkansas under Edwards Food Giant and Edwards Cash Saver and have a philanthropic resume that is easy to be appreciated. Steve
Edwards has served on many boards and committees, including eight years as a commissioner on the Arkansas Aeronautics Commission, 12 years as a commissioner on the Arkansas Department of Economic Development and a recent appointment to the Arkansas State Police Commission. He has also served as a member of the Executive Council and Legislative Affairs Committee of the National Grocers Association. Laura has served on the local chamber board, Arkansas Governor’s Mansion Association, local school board, as well as serving on a mission trip to Ukraine.
“Steve and Laura are truly servant leaders who put the needs of others ahead of themselves,” David Smith, President and CEO of AWG said. “Their service has made a sizeable impact in the communities which they work in.”
Gina Stennett, who oversees the flagship Price Cutter store in Springfield, Mo., has been with the company for more than 40 years. Since taking over the store in 2017, she has shown a 20 percent sales increase at the store. Previously, she held supervisor level positions in IT, loss prevention and store operations for Pyramid. She was named to the Pyramid Foods Board of Directors in 2005. Since running this store, Stennett has been heavily involved in giving back to the community through the Price Cutter Charity Championship golf tournament and working with local foodbanks and schools.
“Gina has a passion for outstanding store conditions and, more importantly, customer service,” Smith said.
“Gina has high expectations for herself and her team, and the results are outstanding.”
Valu Merchandisers Company (VMC), a subsidiary of AWG, awarded its Retail Excellence Award to Tony’s Fresh Market in Burbank, Ill., which leveraged retail opportunities that presented themselves during the unprecedented year and delivered double digit sales growth across all VMC categories, which includes Health, Beauty, and Wellness, General Merchandise, and Natural, Organic, and Specialty Foods.
AWG also announced winners of 11 additional awards through each department. Those winners include:
- AWG Brands – Delbert’s Supermarket in Comanche, Okla.
- Produce – B&R Super Saver, Lincoln, Neb.; Pruett’s Foods, McAlester, Okla. – Bakery – Wiseway Super Food Center, Crown Point, Ind. – Marketing Campaign – Mac’s Fresh Markets, Louisiana
- Food Service – Cosentino’s Price Chopper, Gardner, Kan.
- Floral – Food World, Statesboro, Ga.
- Seafood – Crest Foods, Edmond, Okla.
- Center Store – Strack & Van Til Market, Crown Point, Ind.
- Meat – Tadych’s, Marquette, Mich.
- Merchandising Event – Rouses, New Orleans, La
- Omni-Channel – Hays Supermarkets, Arkansas & Missouri (all stores)
ABOUT ASSOCIATED WHOLESALE GROCERS, INC.
Associated Wholesale Grocers, Inc. (AWG) is the nation’s largest cooperative food wholesaler to independently owned supermarkets, serving over 1,000 member companies and over 3,100 locations throughout 28 states from 8 full-line wholesale Divisions. The consolidated sales for AWG are $10.6 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.