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Lewis Golub, whose father and uncle founded the Price Chopper chain of supermarkets in the northeastern United States, died Sunday at the age of 78 of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a neuromuscular disorder often called Lou Gehrig’s disease.
Golub and his cousin, Neil Golub, took over the business from their fathers, Ben and Bill Golub, in the mid-1970s, eventually expanding it from 50 stores to its current 120 locations. Before heading up Price Chopper, Lewis Golub worked at the company as an electrician, tractor-trailer driver, forklift operator and store clerk.
"Lewis' financial acumen and strategic sense helped put our company on firm ground and enabled us to grow in our home Capital Region and throughout the Northeast," said Price Chopper CEO and president Neil Golub. Among Lewis Golub’s accomplishments at Price Chopper was playing a major role in the implementation of its profit-sharing program for employees (today, 52 percent of the company is owned by its associates, making it the largest employee-owned retail food store in the United States) and championing the acquisition of smaller grocery chains. He retired from the company in 2000.
Lewis Golub served on several corporate boards, among them Dot Foods, Paradigm Securities, Racemark International, Taylor Made Group and the Northeast Regional Advisory Board for JP Morgan Chase.
After his diagnosis of ALS last year, the Golub family pledged $250,000 to Albany, N.Y.'s St. Peter’s ALS Regional Center, which was subsequently renamed the Lewis Golub MDA ALS Clinic, the Albany Times Union reported. Other causes Lewis Golub supported included the United Way. He was also one of the founders of the Saratoga Automobile Museum in New York.
Besides Neil Golub, survivors include Lewis’ wife, Colleen, and four children.