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The Washington D.C.-based Food Marketing Institute (FMI) has named Linda Gobler, president and CEO of the Michigan Grocers Association (MGA), the winner of its Donald H. MacManus Association Executive Award for her extraordinary leadership in food industry relations, public and legislative affairs, and community relations.
“Linda Gobler is a steadfast champion of the grocery industry and ambassador to her home state of Michigan,” FMI president and CEO Leslie G. Sarasin said. “She has a remarkable reputation of protecting grocers from government overreach and helping reduce the cost of doing business.”
Having led the MGA for 25 years, Gobler represents 900 leading chain and independent grocery retail stores and 100 manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors. In its 115th year, the Lansing-based association provides Michigan food businesses with knowledge, solutions and connections to ensure the industry’s continued success.
“This is hard-earned recognition for one of the very best in her profession,” said Kroger's Dale Hollandsworth, the MGA board chairman. “We are proud of her many accomplishments and couldn’t be happier about this honor.”
A founding board member of the Lansing Food Bank, Gobler led MGA's pioneering and award-winning “FoodAid for Michigan” program for 13 years. In 2000, she participated in Habitat for Humanity’s “First Ladies Build” alongside Michigan First Lady Michelle Engler. Today, she helps lead Michigan’s efforts to fight childhood obesity though the Pure Michigan FIT campaign and adult obesity by partnering with the Michigan Department of Community Health to implement the Michigan Healthier Tomorrow initiative.
Gobler received the award April 17 at FMI’s Day in Washington held at the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill. The annual public policy conference is hosted by FMI, the National Grocers Association and the Food Industry Association Executives.