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WASHINGTON -- In appreciation of their exceptional service to the community, consumers and the industry, Jack Brown, chairman and c.e.o. of Colton, Calif.-based Stater Brothers Markets, and William J. Grize, president and c.e.o. of Qunicy, Mass.-based Ahold USA, were awarded the Sydney R. Rabb Award. Food Marketing Institute Board Chair Liz Minyard presented the awards during FMI's 2005 Midwinter Executive Conference in Boca Raton, Fla.
As head of one of the country’s most successful private companies, Jack Brown "knows his customers and he knows the people who make his company work," said Minyard.
"It's hard to find a cause Jack doesn’t support -- especially if it involves children and the hungry."
"Through the Horatio Alger Association, Jack grants scholarships to needy children," continued Minyard. "In 1992 he received the prestigious Horatio Alger Award, honoring his outstanding contributions to the American Dream. He was a founder of the Boys and Girls Club of San Bernardino and helped create the Children's Fund of San Bernardino County. To date, the fund has served nearly half a million abused and at-risk children.
"To help feed the hungry," she said, "Jack is a champion of Food for All, a program that raises money by selling gift cards and accepting donations at checkstands. In order to make the program more efficient and to extend its reach, Jack worked with FMI and the Uniform Code Council to have bar codes put on Food for All cards. With this technology, his company became the first to roll out the program chainwide. Many other companies soon followed his lead."
Ahold USA's Grize has devoted his entire career to the food industry, spanning 45 years.
"Bill's service to the industry can be summed up in a single word: passion," said Minyard as she presented the award. "And he has applied that passion most to industry relations." Grize is now completing his second term as FMI's vice chair of industry relations. He also serves on the Uniform Code Council.
In these positions, Grize has worked to "lay the foundation for the technology of the 21st century," noted Minyard. "He has been a strong advocate for the UCCnet and the Global Data Registry, which is the record of products that enables technology to communicate over UCCnet. This technology is the foundation for ending invoice errors and out-of-stocks. Bill's company was instrumental in developing the Global Data Synchronization Launch Pad, a Web site that provides retailers, wholesalers, and manufacturers with a road map for synchronization."
Grize has "carried on the Rabb tradition of community service in many areas," continued Minyard. "The best example is Bill's support of the Jimmy Fund. This charity supports research and care at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where Bill serves as a trustee."
"Under Bill's leadership, Stop & Shop has become one of the charity's primary benefactors. The company has joined with the Boston Red Sox to raise over $30 million in the charity's most successful corporate fundraising effort -- the Triple Winner Program." The company also established what is known today as the Stop & Shop Pediatric Brain Tumor Clinic. This center at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute treats 500 children a year.
In other FMI award news, Weis Markets president and c.e.o. Norman S. Rich received the 2005 Glen P. Woodard Jr. Public Affairs Award in recognition of outstanding leadership in government affairs at the national and grassroots level, at the 2005 FMI Midwinter Executive Conference.
"In the Glen Woodard tradition, Norm has a solid relationship with his congressional delegation," said FMI president and c.e.o. Tim Hammonds in presenting the award. "He is a strong supporter of FMI's FoodPAC and a member of FMI's action team of advocates who educate lawmakers about critical issues. At the state level, Mr. Rich hosts a Growers Dinner every year with the Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture."
Rich is active in the Children's Miracle Network at the Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pa. and his company is widely known for sponsoring an annual charity golf tournament, which has raised over half a million dollars for neonatal care programs, women's health, and clinics for the working poor.