Wakefern Food Corp. held its annual meeting late last month and it was clearly one of the most pivotal gatherings in the company’s 65 year history. The Keasbey, NJ wholesale grocery co-operative reported that it had reached a record sales level of $12.8 billion in retail sales for its ShopRite and PriceRite stores for the fiscal year ending October 1, 2010, an 8.5 percent increase from the same period last year. Wholesale volume also achieved a record $9.5 billion in annual sales. The cooperative opened 10 new ShopRite stores and two new PriceRite stores during the same period.
In addition to the report of record sales for the year, the company also announced the appointment of Joseph Sheridan to the position of president and COO. Sheridan is a 35-year veteran of the company and has held the position of executive vice president since 1996. Sheridan replaces Dean Janeway, who remains with Wakefern as president emeritus until his official retirement in January 2012.
“Dean has led Wakefern through a period of unprecedented growth,” stated Joseph S. Colalillo, chairman and CEO of Wakefern Food Corp. “His dedication to seeing Wakefern’s members succeed is at the heart of our success.”
“I am so grateful to Dean for the past 16 years of guidance and leadership both personally and professionally,” said Sheridan. “He leaves behind a significant and lasting legacy at Wakefern. I am honored and excited as I look toward the future and the continued success of the company.”
“Joe brings vast experience and expertise in all aspects of the supermarket industry to his new role,” added Colalillo. “He has made a tremendous impact on the success of the company during his time at Wakefern. We look forward to his leadership as we enter into this new chapter in our company’s history.”
“I am pleased to congratulate Joe Sheridan on this much-deserved appointment,” said Janeway. “Wakefern’s many successes over the years – including those of its members, staff and associates – that have culminated in this year’s record-breaking achievements, have made me so very proud to be a member of this team. We are truly a family of families and I am grateful to have had the opportunity to serve them all.”
The company also announced that, in honor of Janeway’s generous spirit and 45 years of service, it has established The Dean Janeway Endowment for Healthcare Excellence at the Foundation of UMDNJ. Janeway will designate the $1 million endowment to support groundbreaking research, scholarships for future healthcare professionals or patient care and community service programs for the underserved; all programs offered through the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. The endowment fund was presented to Dr. George F. Heinrich, vice chairman and CEO of the Foundation of UMDNJ and its parent company, New Jersey Health Foundation, at the meeting.
“We are sincerely grateful that Wakefern has set up an endowment to honor Mr. Janeway,” said Heinrich. “This fund will provide him with a meaningful opportunity to advance high quality healthcare programs that mean the most to him and can have a vital impact on the health of residents throughout our state.”
Also at the meeting, Wakefern shareholders re-elected to the board of directors: Joseph S. Colalillo as chairman; James Sumas, Larri Wolfson and Irv Glass as vice chairmen; Lawrence Inserra Jr., treasurer; Richard Saker, Jeffrey Brown and Kenneth Capano as assistant treasurers; Dominick J. Romano as secretary; Ned Gladstein, Joel Perlmutter and Steven Ravitz, assistant secretaries; Rocco Cingari, Robert Clare, Lawrence Collins, Jon Greenfield, Charles Infusino, Bernard Kenny, Vincent Lo Curcio III, Leonard Sitar, Richard Tully and Richard McMenamin.
Sheridan was also re-elected as an operating officer.