Meijer Inc. has revealed the winners of its 2022 Legacy Awards, recognizing seven individuals across the company for their impact on their teams, customers and communities. The super regional retailer also made public the recipients of its first-ever Meijer Impact award, which celebrates an exceptional team's accomplishments and extraordinary acts of service.
"While a lot about retail has changed since we opened our doors in 1934, our focus on our customers, team members and community has always endured," Executive Chairman Hank Meijer said. "The Legacy Awards are the company's highest honor, recognizing those individuals who are driving business results while living out the values our company was built on. These winners serve as role models for other team members now and in the future."
Adrian, Mich., Meijer Store Director Ben Negron received the 2022 Fred Meijer Award, the highest-level recognition a Meijer team member can receive. This award is given annually to one individual who embodies the values and mission set forth by late company leader Fred Meijer, including leadership based in humility, generosity, and a passion for serving others.
Negron is described as a person with a heart for the people in his family, store and community. An active participant in his community, he founded and served as the executive director of Hispanics of Lenawee Alliance and remains active in many Hispanic community events. He also serves on the Siena Heights University board of trustees and the Lenawee Community Foundation board of directors. In 2021, he received the Lenawee Leadership Award for exemplifying the quality of leadership that will determine the future of Lenawee County.
Within Meijer, Negron is a member of the communication committee for one of the retailer's team member resource groups, Mosaic, and drives team member participation at the store and market level. Mosaic supports advocacy and awareness for people of color, people with diverse backgrounds, and people from different cultures and communities.
"Ben Negron is well respected by his Meijer team and is a dedicated advocate for the people of Adrian," Meijer said. "Community members know Ben by name, and he never misses an opportunity to engage with people in meaningful ways. His natural abilities as a relationship-builder and the way he treats everyone he encounters with dignity and respect is very reminiscent of my father Fred's legacy. It's an honor to present Ben Negron with the Fred Meijer Award."
The company also celebrated six winners of the 2022 President's Award, which acknowledges their significant business contributions in the past year. The winners are:
- Carol Bork, cashier at the Washington Township Meijer in Washington Township, Mich.
- Amy Chan, office manager in the Global Sourcing Office
- Ben Hamlin, director of own-brand food in Grand Rapids, Mich.
- Dave Hoover, director of outbound logistics in Lansing, Mich.
- Kyle Musser, director of distribution in Tipp City, Ohio
- Erik Petrovskis, director of environmental compliance and sustainability in Grand Rapids, Mich.
"This year's President's Award winners are inspiring, because they demonstrate everyone has the ability to make a meaningful impact on the company's success," Meijer President and CEO Rick Keyes said. "What these individuals have in common is a commitment to living our company's values every day, the earned respect of their peers and colleagues, and a passion for making a positive impact on our business. I'm honored to recognize their accomplishments."
New this year is the Meijer Impact Award. Separate from the Legacy Awards, the Meijer Impact Award recognizes exceptional team accomplishments and extraordinary acts of service. The entire team at the Tipp City Distribution Center was honored this year for their response to the June 2022 tornado that struck the facility.
Keyes recognized the team for their quick response: They had only 10 minutes to react to what became an EF-2 tornado. After everyone's safety was confirmed, the team worked swiftly to minimize any disruptions and keep product flowing to stores. They also contacted local officials to offer support and resources toward local recovery efforts.
"Their quick activation of our severe weather protocols helped ensure everyone on the complex was safe from harm that day, and for that we are grateful," Keyes said. "The Tipp City team's focus on team member safety, commitment to customers and concern for the community all underscore why they are so deserving of this recognition."
Meijer earned its own Impact Award from Progressive Grocer last year for the company's accomplishments in the areas of DEI and Belonging, Educational Support/Learning Advancement and Food Security/ Nutritional Leadership.
Privately owned Meijer operates approximately 500 supercenters, neighborhood markets and Express locations throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Wisconsin. The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based company is No. 20 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America. PG also named the company one of its Retailers of the Century.