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Associated Wholesale Grocers (AWG) has named David Smith president and CEO effective January 2016, succeeding Jerry Garland.
Smith, currently EVP of operations, joined AWG in 2003 and opened the new Gulf Coast Division in Louisiana in 2013.
“AWG is fortunate to have someone as experienced in family-owned businesses as David with an experienced leadership team in place to support his efforts,” said Barry Queen, AWG’s chairman of the board. “The AWG board has worked closely with Jerry over the past few years on a succession plan that will provide a smooth transition and continue the momentum that the company and our members have benefited from over his time as CEO.”
Garland, who has served as president and CEO since 2009 and will continue with AWG in an advisory capacity after the first of the year, helped the wholesaler grow into a $9 billion dollar business with nine distribution centers. During his tenure at the helm, sales grew 31 percent and net income rose 70 percent while operating expenses declined. Garland will remain chairman of the Food Marketing Institute until his current term ends.
AWG currently supplies more than 3,400 groceries in 26 states.