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Five-store independent grocer James Neumann, v.p. of ValuMarkets, Inc., has been named 2008 Grocer of the Year by the Kentucky Grocers Association.
Immediate past chairman of KGA/KACS, Neumann "completes with an enthusiasm for life that is infectious to all around him," said Ted Mason, executive director of the Frankfort, Ken.-based KGA/KACS.
Known for being aggressive, innovative, and community-focused, ValuMarkets, Inc. in recent years has gone from a small business trying to survive to one that's now the largest locally owned grocer in the Louisville area. Neumann and his brother Greg, work side-by-side at the Louisville, Ken. family business originally co-founded by their father, Frank Neumann, in 1978.
During the awards ceremony at the statewide trade association's recent 67th annual meeting, Greg Neumann said, "James is the kind of person who you might meet and have casual conversation with for five minutes, then want to have lunch or dinner with, and eventually have you wishing he would marry your daughter if you happen to have one."
KGA/KACS represents approximately 450 member companies operating 3,300 locations across the state. Besides retailers, membership also includes wholesalers, distributors, and related suppliers to the supermarket and convenience store industries.