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Meg Ham, president of Salisbury, N.C.-based Food Lion, was honored as the fourth recipient of the distinguished 2015 Trailblazer Award from Progressive Grocer and the Network of Executive Women (NEW), at last evening's Top Women in Grocery gala celebration at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress, in Orlando, Fla.
“In appreciation and recognition of her talents, tenacity and unflagging efforts to advance women through the ranks at Food Lion, coupled with her commitment to advancing extremely worthwhile causes in the hundreds of local communities that Food Lion proudly serves, we’re truly delighted and very proud to honor Meg Ham as our 2015 Top Woman in Grocery Trailblazer,” says Meg Major, PG’s chief content editor.
Noting Ham's strong advocacy for women’s leadership – both inside and outside of her company – Nancy Krawczyk, NEW's VP of marketing & corporate partnerships, said: "It is our privilege to recognize tonight a woman who serves her company, her industry and her community, my friend, Meg Ham. We need more leaders like Meg," added Krawczyk.
During her Trailblazer acceptance remarks, Ham encouraged the 2015 Top Women in Grocery, "To reflect on what you want your goals to be, and stay true to yourself in the process. Be open to feedback as you continue along your career path. And, don't be afraid to have frequent conversations about development – or be the conversation starter, if others are not having the conversation with you."
Conferring her motto, "If it is to be, it is up to me," Ham also urged her audience "to seek out mentors that you believe will help you achieve the career goal you are looking for. Take advantage of professional development opportunities through your employer, and ask for development opportunities that will help you stand out in the workplace and align to your goals."
In addition, Ham said, "I hope each of you take a few minutes to celebrate your success. Each of you are here tonight because of the mark you have made in your career, or you are here to honor the accomplishments of women in this room tonight. You should be incredibly proud."
As president of Food Lion, Ham oversees all aspects of the regional banner’s operations, including financial performance, merchandising, pricing, customer service, marketing and strategy. As a member of the parent company’s corporate leadership team, she offers an extensive background in both retail operations and merchandising, along with an ability to maintain a strong focus on customer service and the associate experience, all of which are essential to Food Lion’s strategy, Easy, Fresh & Affordable … You Can Count on Food Lion Every Day!
For more than 26 years, Ham has built her career as a food retailer, focused on the value of service to customers and associates.
Ham joined the Delhaize America family of supermarkets in 1988. Her wide-ranging leadership roles have included leading brand operations for Bottom Dollar Food, Bloom, Food Lion, Harveys and Reid’s, as well as overseeing dry merchandising initiatives, with responsibilities for perishable and nonperishable product procurement and merchandising.
She has been active in the banner’s pricing strategies, integrating Food Lion’s supply chain with other Delhaize America supermarkets, and leading efforts to maximize in-store merchandising. She also held a variety of leadership roles at Scarborough, Maine-based Hannaford Supermarkets for more than 10 years.
Originally from central New York, Ham, who resides in Concord, N.C., with her husband and two sons, earned a B.S. in business management and marketing from Cornell University. She currently serves on the national Easter Seals board of directors, the FMI Foundation board of trustees and the NEW national board. In addition, she’s a past member of the board of governors for Saint Joseph’s University’s Food Marketing Educational Foundation.
Established in 2012, the PG/NEW Trailblazer Award recognizes a single executive whose leadership, vision and influence have helped break new ground for women in the retail food industry.
PG’s 2015 Top Women in Grocery awards program marks the ninth year the national trade publication has recognized the invaluable contributions of women from all walks of the retail food industry in three categories: Senior-level Executives, Rising Stars and Store Managers.
Additional details about PG’s Top Women in Grocery gala event, including registration and program information, hotel accommodations, and a complete list of current and past winners, can be found at Topwomeningrocery.progressivegrocer.com.