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Midwest Wholesaler/Distributor News

AWG Appoints Derek Jones As EVP, Division Operations

AWG Derek Jones EVP
Derek Jones

Kansas City, Kansas-based Associated Wholesale Grocers Inc. has appointed Derek Jones as EVP, division operations of the company, effective July 10. 

In this role, Jones will lead all operations functions, including divisions, corporate distribution, sales, support and services. He will report to Dan Funk, president-elect. 

Reporting to Jones will be Richard Kearns, EVP of distribution and logistics; Emile Breaux, SVP, chief sales and support officer; and regional SVPs Danny Lane, James Vaughan and Troy Marshall.  

Jones has more than 30 years of diversified experience in retail and distribution businesses, most of which were in the food industry. He most recently served as CEO of Super Store Industries from 2021-23, overseeing the company’s distribution and manufacturing business. 

Before that role, he served as the president of US Foods’ CHEF’Store in 2021 and was president of Smart Foodservice Warehouse Stores from 2017-21 before it was purchased by US Foods.

Previously before Smart Foodservice Warehouse Stores, he held various EVP roles from 2006-17 at SpartanNash.

“We are blessed to have an accomplished leader such as Derek, who will take on this critical leadership role at AWG,” said David Smith, president and CEO. 

“He complements our high performing culture, and we believe his reputation for remarkable execution and results as a retailer and supplier have prepared him to be a critical member of the future executive team that will further elevate our performance of AWG’s mission of providing our member retailers with all the tools, products and services they need to compete favorably in all markets served, all at the lowest possible cost.”  

Associated Wholesale Grocers Inc. is a large cooperative food wholesaler to independently-owned supermarkets, serving 1,100 member companies and more than 3,400 locations throughout 31 states from nine wholesale divisions. 

In addition to its cooperative wholesale operations, the company also operates subsidiary companies that provide certain real estate and supermarket development services, health and beauty care, general merchandise, pharmaceutical products, specialty foods, and natural and organic products.

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