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Associated Food Stores Names Rice As President, CEO

Rice Associated Food Stores
David Rice

Salt Lake City, Utah-based Associated Food Stores has named David Rice as president and CEO of the 82-year-old company. 

The move comes following the passing of Robert Obray, who served as president and CEO when he passed away from a rare, fast-moving neurological disease in August. 

“Bob was an incredible leader and worked closely with the company’s board of directors and his leadership team to establish the future direction of the company,” Rice said. “Bob was a friend to all and while no one will ever fill his shoes, collectively we are committed to following in his remarkable footsteps.” 

Obray was named president and CEO in 2020 after the retirement of Neal Berube. To read the full story presented by The Shelby Report, click here

Rice brings knowledge and experience to the position having worked for Associated Food Stores for 27 years. Previously, Rice served as EVP of Associated Food Stores and president of Associated Retail Operations. 

“With almost three decades of industry experience, Rice combines extensive expertise and a commitment to independent retailers that is vital as we continue executing our short and long-term  growth strategies,” said Chip Atkinson, chairman of the board, Associated Food Stores.

“His proven ability to connect with retailers, team members and vendor partners make him an ideal fit to lead Associated Food Stores and we are energized and enthusiastic about the future of our cooperative under his direction.” 

Associated Food Stores is an independent retailer-owned warehouse providing facilities and retail services to nearly 500 grocers throughout the intermountain West. Started in 1940, when 34 retailers joined to battle high supplier costs and chain competition, members of Associated Food Stores continue fulfilling the mission of the original member owners more than 80 years later.

For more information, visit afstores.com.

To read more wholesaler and distributor news from The Shelby Report, click here.

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