Nerissa Johnson, store manager of a Food Lion location in Columbia, N.C., received the supermarket chain’s Ralph W. Ketner Store Manager of the Year award last week at the company's headquarters in Salisbury, N.C.
“When I turn the key to my store every day, I pray that I never forget the value of people so they will find value in us,” Johnson said at the awards presentation. “I just feel so overjoyed and humbled right now and happy for my team.”
Johnson was chosen from a group of more than 1,000 store managers across the company. Earlier, she and three other Food Lion store managers were named as the company's divisional winners representing their respective regions.
“This is my favorite day of the year, because it's a day in honor of all of our store managers and who they are to our customers, our store associates, our total organization and to me personally,” Food Lion President Meg Ham told the audience at the awards ceremony. "Although we are honoring the top four divisional winners and naming our Store Manager of the Year, today is about highlighting all of our more than 1,000 store managers because they are the heartbeat in the towns and cities where we operate.”
Johnson, who grew up in the grocery business, has nearly 27 years of experience with Food Lion. Her accomplishments over the past year include leading Food Lion Feeds community projects while boosting store sales and developing her 40 associates. She was also one of Progressive Grocer’s Top Women in Grocery in 2017.
The other store managers recognized for exceptional leadership with 2017 Division Store Manager Excellence Awards were Erica Hayes, Newport News, Va.; Greta Simmons, Colonial Heights, Va.; and Adam Threatt, Lancaster, S.C.
A company of Ahold Delhaize USA., part of Zaandam, Netherlands-based Royal Ahold Delhaize Group, Food Lion has more than 1,000 stores in 10 Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic states, and employs 63,000-plus associates.