COLORADO SPRINGS, CO – The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) last night presented the group’s highest honor, the Hall of Achievement Award, to Robert E. Rich, Jr., chairman of Rich Products Corporation, and Jeffrey Noddle, executive chairman of the board of SUPERVALU INC. The awards were presented at the opening session of the 2009 GMA Executive Conference at The Broadmoor.
“The GMA Hall of Achievement would be incomplete without Bob Rich,” said Pamela G. Bailey, president and CEO of GMA. “While growing his family business into one of the most prolific food manufacturers in the world, he remained steadfast in his commitment to serving the CPG industry at large, exemplified by his 22 years as a member of the GMA board of directors. Bob’s distinguished record of service to his industry and his community is second to none.”
“The addition of Jeff Noddle to the list of Hall of Achievement Award winners makes it that much more impressive,” Bailey continued. “Not only has he realized extraordinary success as a business man in the hyper-competitive retail sector, but under Jeff’s leadership, SUPERVALU has proven to be a truly collaborative trading partner to GMA member companies and a model corporate citizen. He is a credit to our industry and it is a pleasure to recognize his many contributions with this award.”
Rich is the chairman of Rich Products Corporation of Buffalo, New York, a company with annual sales in excess of $2.8 billion and more than 7,300 associates worldwide. The company manufactures more than 2,000 products, which can be found in 85 countries across the globe.
Rich’s tenure on the GMA board of directors, from 1984-2006, is the longest in GMA history. He was chairman of the GMA board from 1999 to 2001. He is active on several corporate boards and organizations including The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Extra Mile Transportation, Inc., and The International Game Fish Association. Rich is a member of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Leadership Council and the United States Squash Association. He is a spokesman for Meals on Wheels and a life member of the Distinguished Order of Zerocrats. Rich is also a past chairman of the Uniform Code Council as well as the National Frozen Food Association, one of the youngest ever to head this leadership group of more than 1,600 distributors, brokers and manufacturers.
Jeff Noddle is executive chairman of the board of Minnesota-based SUPERVALU INC., the third-largest grocery retailer and leading food distributor in the United States. In his career, he has held a number of leadership positions across SUPERVALU’s retail and supply chain operations and was named CEO in 2000. His 2006 acquisition of Albertson’s, the largest ever in the grocery retail business, more than doubled the company’s annual revenue, doubled its store base and quadrupled its workforce.
Noddle is the immediate past chairman of the board of directors of The Food Marketing Institute (FMI) and serves as a member of the boards of directors of Donaldson Company, Inc., Ameriprise Financial, Inc., The Food Industry Center at the University of Minnesota, the Independent Grocers Alliance, Inc. (IGA), and the Academy of Food Marketing at Saint Joseph’s University. In addition, he is a member of The Business Council, a national organization of CEOs. He is also active in Minneapolis civic affairs, currently serving on the Greater Twin Cities United Way board of directors and executive committee, the University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management’s Board of Overseers, and as a member of the executive committee of the Minnesota Business Partnership.
The GMA Hall of Achievement Award honors the extraordinary service and contributions of the consumer packaged goods industry’s most distinguished leaders. Established in 1984, 2009 marks the 25th anniversary of the award whose past recipients include Stephen Sanger of General Mills, Inc., Jim Kilts of The Gillette Company and Joseph Pichler of The Kroger Co.