Associated Wholesale Grocers (AWG) announced Jan. 9 that Chuck Murfin has resigned from its board of directors, effective Dec. 10, 2019, due to his retirement from the supermarket industry after 40 years of operations. Murfin recently sold his four supermarkets in the Springfield, Missouri, area to another AWG member.
In a related move at its December 2019 meeting, the board elected Donald Rouse Jr. to serve as Murfin’s successor for the remainder of his term that will expire at the company’s 2022 annual meeting of stockholders. Rouse serves as CEO of Rouses Markets, a Louisiana-based regional grocer operating 63 supermarkets along the Gulf Coast.
Murfin joined the board in 1990 and served as a member of the finance committee.
“On behalf of the board I would like to thank Chuck for his dedication to AWG and our members for the last 30 years,” said Barry Queen, chairman of the board for AWG. “Chuck has played an instrumental role on our board over the last three decades and helped guide us as we grew from two divisions with $2 billion in annual sales to eight divisions today with over $9.7 billion in sales.” Murfin stated “It’s been a great opportunity, a wonderful ride, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it. I will never forget all the great people I’ve met over the years”.
Rouse started working in his family’s grocery store as a teenager. His values were strongly shaped by his grandfather, who founded the business in 1960, and father, who helped grow it into the largest independent in Louisiana. He has earned a reputation as a visionary in the grocery business, while establishing a personal legacy of commitment to community.
“I am very honored to be joining AWG’s board and look forward to contributing to its continued success in any way I can,” Rouse stated.
Regarding Rouse’s appointment to the board, Queen said: “Donny Rouse leads one of the best regional independent chains in the country. They are very progressive in their store designs, operations, offerings and marketing. They are a great example of an independent grocer that continues to raise their game, so they remain relevant leaders in the markets they serve. I know that he will be a great contributor to our board and the future success of AWG and the members we serve.”
AWG is the nation’s largest cooperative food wholesaler to independently owned supermarkets, serving over 1,000 member companies and over 3,000 locations throughout 28 states from eight full-line wholesale divisions. The consolidated run-rate sales for AWG are approximately $9.7 billion. In addition to its cooperative wholesale operations, the company also operates subsidiary companies which provide certain real estate and supermarket development services, print and digital marketing services, and health and beauty care, general merchandise, specialty/international foods and pharmaceutical products.