The Retail Produce Manager Awards program recognizes best-in-class produce managers each year. ( United Fresh Produce Association )

Produce managers from 16 states and Canada have been recognized by the United Fresh Produce Association as part of the annual Retail Produce Manager Awards program.

“As the face of our industry in store, retail produce managers play a significant role in influencing a consumer’s decision to shop for fresh produce,” Tom Stenzel, president and CEO of United Fresh, said in a news release. “More so than ever before, we are extremely fortunate to have these outstanding produce managers representing our industry and working each day to deliver a positive customer experience in the produce department during the coronavirus pandemic. We’re especially grateful for their resolve in the face of this public health crisis.”

Criteria for the awards includes excellence in merchandising; special displays and promotions; commitment to customer satisfaction; and community service, per the release. United Fresh received hundreds of nominations, and it will celebrate the award winners at the virtual Retail-Foodservice Celebration that will be part of United Fresh LIVE! the week of June 15.

Five ‘grand prize’ recipients will receive a $1,000 cash prize along with their award.

The produce managers being honored for 2020 are:

  • Michael Foint, Big Y Foods Inc, Amherst, Mass.;
  • Freddie Dowell, Brookshire Grocery Co., Malakoff, Texas;
  • Dave Baxter, Daniels Sentry Foods, Walworth, Wis.;
  • Jaleisha Freeman, Oceana Naval Air Station Commissary, Virginia Beach, Va.;
  • Steve Kaluahine, Gelson’s Market, Rancho Mission Viejo, Calif.;
  • John Hollenden, Giant Food Stores, Warrington, Pa.;
  • Paul Rosen, Good Foods Store, Missoula, Mont.;
  • Gabriel Cabrera, Grocery Outlet, Visalia, Calif.;
  • Clay Williams, Harps Food Stores, Fayetteville, Ark.;
  • Ricky Morrison, Harris Teeter Supermarkets, Charlotte/Harrisburg, N.C.’;
  • Ronnie Minteer, Hy-Vee Inc., Springfield, Ill.;
  • Brian Lowery, Jewel-Osco, Chicago;
  • Christine Burton, Kroger Co., Shelbyville, Ind.;
  • Randy Davis, K-VA-T Food Stores (Food City), Gatlinburg, Tenn.;
  • Maynard Miller, Martin’s Super Markets, Nappanee, Ind.;
  • Tammy Joseph, Meijer, Cedar Springs, Mich.;
  • Kevin MacLeod, Metro Ontario Inc., Orleans, Ontario;
  • Bill Ryder, Publix Super Markets Inc., Tullahoma, Tenn.;
  • Michael Thomas, Raley’s Family of Fine Stores, Carson City, Nev.;
  • Josh Smith, Rouses Supermarkets, New Orleans;
  • Ken Marske, Schmitz’s Economart, Spooner, Wis.;
  • Jose Garcia, Sprouts Farmers Market, Santee, Calif.;
  • Eduardo Queirolo, The Fresh Market, Aventura, Fla.;
  • Brad Franklin, Tops Friendly Markets, Towanda, Pa.; and
  • Robert Fowler, Whole Foods Market, Chicago.