Independent Grocer Network

For independent grocers and the wholesalers that serve them

New members -- tell us a little about yourself -- your role in your company, what type of members you'd like to connect with, and issues you'd like like to see discussed in the network.

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Hi - I'm Joe Tarnowski, senior editor with Progressive Grocer and The Gourmet Retailer, and manager of the Independent Grocer Network. My goal with the network is to make it something you can truly call your own, where retailers and wholesalers can tap into the best resources for information -- each other. I'm always interested in learning how to improve your experience here, so please don't hesitate to contact me with any comments or questions about the network. You can reach me through my profile page by clicking here.
My name is Robert Stockham. My partner and I operate an interior design firm, Great Lakes Design Collaborative. My partner has been designing grocery stores and other retail for over 20 years. I have worked in management in grocery, retail and hospitality. This gives us the advantage of knowing how stores should work as well as how they look. I am also a social media and internet marketer. I write a blog, The Great Lakes Green Pages. As a LEED AP, I also believe in sustainability issues. I am thrilled that we have finally met the crossroads where building green can make more sense for retailers as it can save them on their operating costs and make them more profitable.
Hello, my name is Steve Hilton, and I am the Director of Marketing and Public Relations for E. W. James and Sons Supermarkets. I am interested in Marketing and Advertising stories, theories, and especially electronic marketing. I'm interested in learning how to implement and track for results, as well as resources available. Here's the LINK to my profile page.
Hi, my name is Adam Napell of Market Basket Rewards. We specialize in creating affordable, customized marketing programs for independent retailers. We will create shopper identifiers and build a shopper database, archiving shopper data for up to two years and parsing and analyzing it via our newly developed "Shopper Insight Dashboard." We can also manage promotions and offer gift fulfillment. We will promote store brands via email campaigns, as well as social media. We have Market Basket Rewards Blog which shares ideas and strategies for successful marketing campaigns.
Anyone looking to hear what other retailers are doing - whether they are customers of ours' or not - is welcome to contact me!
Hi Everyone. My name is Olivia Wilson and I am the Publisher of Progressive Grocer. My role at Progressive Grocer is to manage the brand's print, online and face-to-face events to guarantee that we are offering our readers everything that they need to run their business. I am constantly thinking ahead about what we could be doing better to serve both our retailer and manufacturer audiences to maintain our #1 status in the marketplace. If you have any ideas or suggestions on what we can be doing better, please be sure to pass them along. We have worked very hard to make the Independent Grocer Network a reality. I hope you find it enriching and beneficial.
My name is Jean Holtz. I'm not an independent grocer, but I would like to attract one to open a store in downtown New Brunswick, New Jersey. My organization is a nonprofit redevelopment company. We have an incredible opportunity for an aggressive operator to move into a new facility in our downtown (right next to the train station, a major hospital, and just two blocks from J&J's world hq and Rutgers University). Any interest out there?

Hi there Jean. Mary from whisk,  would like to hear more about your nonprofit. We are getting ready to launch tea4support.com - a tea site especially for business  / nonprofits  Please contact info@whiskandspoon.com johnny@tea4support.com or Mary on 610 624 3680.  thanks.

My name is Jason Nelson. Currently I'm working for the Kansas City division of Associated Wholesale Grocers in their Advertising Department. I am currently a Supervisor of Print Production, but have a wide range of responsibilities. I develop and manage the execution of creative advertising and marketing strategies for 140 independent grocery retailers. Develop innovative strategies for retailer sales growth. Provide education and training to employees to increase production efficiencies. I am also currently researching and developing web-based and social media marketing plans.

www.twitter.com/canjockey
www.linkedin.com/in/canjockey
Food deserts are huge problem in urban areas. I applaud your efforts to bring new grocery to downtown. while we are not developers, and I do not know of any at this time, when you find one I have lots of contacts that can help. I am joining a food co op group to bring grocery to areas of Cleveland that lack access. Good Luck and if there is anything I can do to help, email me at robert@thegldc.com

Jean Holtz said:
My name is Jean Holtz. I'm not an independent grocer, but I would like to attract one to open a store in downtown New Brunswick, New Jersey. My organization is a nonprofit redevelopment company. We have an incredible opportunity for an aggressive operator to move into a new facility in our downtown (right next to the train station, a major hospital, and just two blocks from J&J's world hq and Rutgers University). Any interest out there?
Hi I'm Greg Ferrara and I'm the Director of Government Affairs for N.G.A. My responsibilities include lobbying and reporting on many federal legislative and regulatory issues facing our industry ranging from labor to tax, food safety to credit card interchange fees. I'm a former independent retailer from New Orleans where my family owned and operated a 99 year old single store supermarket that, unfortunately, didn't survive Hurricane Katrina. I also spent a year and half working as a project manager for a regional grocery wholesaler in Baton Rouge where I managed corporate projects ranging from HR technology to transportation and logistics. In addition I coordinated the company's preparation and aftermath response to Hurricane Gustav.
And now Greg lives in the frozen land of D.C. but misses real SNOWBALLS -- the kind you eat in the summer in South Louisiana!! Hi Greg! Yes, it's me ... just when you think it's safe!!

Greg Ferrara said:
Hi I'm Greg Ferrara and I'm the Director of Government Affairs for N.G.A. My responsibilities include lobbying and reporting on many federal legislative and regulatory issues facing our industry ranging from labor to tax, food safety to credit card interchange fees. I'm a former independent retailer from New Orleans where my family owned and operated a 99 year old single store supermarket that, unfortunately, didn't survive Hurricane Katrina. I also spent a year and half working as a project manager for a regional grocery wholesaler in Baton Rouge where I managed corporate projects ranging from HR technology to transportation and logistics. In addition I coordinated the company's preparation and aftermath response to Hurricane Gustav.
Hi I'm Aaron Floersch, and I as many independent grocers do, wear many hats. I am a 3rd generation independent grocer. I am primarily in charge of technology for our 7 stores. We are located in the heartland of north central Kansas and southern Nebraska. I am always looking for ways to use technology to save on costs such as labor and to make us operate more efficiently. I also am in charge of our website. With Jason Nelson's help, who is a member of this network as well, we are working on leveraging our social network presence.

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