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    Publix Appoints Division VP, Receives Recognition for Helping Fla. Veterans

    Joe DiBenedetto will become Atlanta division VP in January.

    Publix Super Markets has promoted Joseph “Joe” DiBenedetto to the position of Atlanta division VP, effective Jan. 1, 2011.

    A regional director in the Atlanta division since June 1995, DiBenedetto joined Publix in 1975 as a front-service clerk in Cape Coral, Fla. He rose to the position of store manager in 1986 and became a district manager in 1992. He was additionally Publix’s first district manager in South Carolina.

    “Developing our leaders for future opportunities is important to our long-term success,” noted CEO Ed Crenshaw. “I am pleased we have leaders like Joe who are prepared to take on new roles.”

    In other Publix news, earlier this month, Richard Van Houten and Justin Wells of the Florida chapter of the Veterans Support Organization, along with Michelle Van Houten, director of Veterans New Life Haven, a division of the organization, presented the grocer’s Miami division manager of media and community relations, Kimberly Jaeger, with a plaque honoring its continuing support.

    Publix permits the Veterans Support Organization to raise funds at many of its south Florida locations, enabling needy area veterans to receive ongoing assistance.

    “Without the support and understanding of people like Bill Fauerbach (VP of retail operations for the Miami division), Publix Super Markets and Publix customers, we would not be able to help so many veterans in our community,” said Richard Van Houten, president and founder of Veterans Support Organization, which currently operates in 11 states. “The support from Publix is immeasurable — their support makes all the difference to us and our teams. They allow us to give hope and help to veterans in need.”

    The not-for-profit organization helps veterans who are homeless, or near homeless, get back on their feet through several programs that address emotional and financial needs. Veteran’s New Life Haven is a 135-bed sober transitional housing facility in Sunrise, Fla., for homeless or near homeless veterans, featuring on-site addiction-specialist caseworkers.

    Privately owned and operated by its 142,000 employees, Lakeland, Fla.-based Publix has 1,023 stores in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama and Tennessee.

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