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In an effort to reinforce its focus on customer service, employee growth and training, and a dedication to local communities, New Seasons Market has named Wendy Collie as president, CEO and a member of the board of directors effective Jan. 2, 2013.
"We are pleased to have found someone who so clearly shares our mission and values, and our love for the Northwest,” said New Seasons co-founder and board chair Stan Amy. “Wendy is a well-known visionary who has built a reputation and track record as a leader who invests in people, culture development, customer service, operational excellence and strategic growth. She has a passion for food and for the unique essence of the greater Portland community that is core to New Seasons Market.”
Collie's first 30 days on the job as the Portland-based grocer’s new leader will be spent wearing an apron and working alongside staff in every store, meeting farmers and vendors, and interacting with shoppers.
A resident of Portland, Collie was most recently president of Consumer Businesses for Knowledge Universe, the largest privately held early childhood educator. She led the focus on quality and customer-centric decision making, as well as operational excellence and people development that enabled teachers and leaders throughout the company.
Prior to joining Knowledge Universe, Wendy worked for Starbucks Coffee Company for almost 18 years. She was known for her passion and creating positive experiences for customers, as well as work environments that inspire and grow great leaders. Collie played an instrumental role in leading Starbucks’ employee and customer satisfaction scores resulting in strong growth in profitability during the company’s rapid growth years. During her tenure at Starbucks, Collie grew with the company and held numerous positions both domestically and internationally. Starting as a district manager, she served in various leadership roles both in field operations and support positions like regional director and VP within the Pacific Northwest, to serving as the GM of Seattle’s Best Coffee and, most recently, serving as SVP and GM for Starbucks U.S. Licensed Stores.
"I am honored and excited to lead New Seasons Market, one of the region’s most respected employers and grocers, and a dedicated community supporter,” said Collie. “I look forward to working with the company's employees to bring great shopping experiences and innovative products to customers. I wanted to work someplace where I would get more connected to Portland, and to be part of a company where I believe in and am inspired by the people, the quality of the product and the mission. New Seasons Market is that company. ”
Since its inception in 2000, New Seasons Market has been a strong, sustainable company, focused on supporting local farmers and food producers, being a progressive employer, and giving back to the community. Collie represents the next generation of leadership, and is supported by a team with decades of combined experience at New Seasons Market.
"Wendy is smart, friendly and committed to our values,” said New Seasons store manager Steve Kelly, a participant in the staff hiring committee. “She emphasized the importance of having a clear, consistent vision across the company, which is important as we grow and the local grocery marketplace changes”
Founded by three Portland families more than 12 years ago, New Seasons operates 12 stores throughout the Portland-Vancouver area.