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Wakefern Donates $1M For Scholarship Honoring Sheridan

Joe Sheridan
Joe Sheridan

Last updated on May 28th, 2024 at 12:41 pm

Wakefern Food Corp. has made a $1 million donation for student scholarships at Kean University in honor of the company’s recently-retired president, Kean alumnus Joe Sheridan.

The New Jersey-based supermarket cooperative endowed the “Joe Sheridan Resiliency Scholarship” to help students in the University’s College of Business and Public Management pursue their professional goals and dreams.

Sheridan, who retired as president and COO in December after nearly five decades with Wakefern, is an active supporter of the Kean University Foundation, as well as many other social and community causes.

“Wakefern’s generous gift honoring Kean alumnus Joe Sheridan creates a lasting legacy at Kean and offers students a financial safety net to continue their studies and follow in the footsteps of Joe and other prominent Kean alumni,” said Kean President Lamont O. Repollet.

“We are grateful to Joe for his support throughout his years, and we thank Wakefern for their generosity in his name.” 

[RELATED: Street Renamed For Wakefern’s Sheridan In Elizabeth, NJ]

The Kean University Board of Trustees on May 6 voted to name the sixth floor boardroom at Kean’s Hynes Hall after Sheridan and expressed gratitude to Wakefern for the support.

The Joe Sheridan Resiliency Scholarship will benefit, in perpetuity, Kean CBPM students who maintain a GPA of 3.0 or above and who have demonstrated financial need. 

“It is our great pleasure to thank Joe Sheridan and Wakefern, and express our deepest appreciation for this gift,” said William Miller, CEO of the Kean University Foundation. 

“Through Joe’s vision and compassion, Kean’s College of Business and Public Management students will get a helping hand to keep them on track to graduation and the chance to build their own successful careers.”

Sheridan earned a bachelor’s degree in management science from Kean in 1980, and his wife, Joan, received her master’s degree in educational administration and supervision from Kean in 1986.

During Sheridan’s tenure as VP and president at Wakefern, he shepherded membership and store growth, launched one of the grocery industry’s earliest online shopping platforms in 2002 and rolled out Wakefern’s private label product lines Bowl & Basket, Wholesome Pantry and Paperbird

Wakefern, a retailer-owned cooperative with 45 members and 365 supermarkets, including ShopRite, Price Rite Marketplace, the Fresh Grocer, Gourmet Garage, Fairway Market, Dearborn Market and Di Bruno Bros., also became a leader in social responsibility under Sheridan’s stewardship.

“The creation of the Kean scholarship is in keeping with Joe Sheridan’s desire to give back,” said Wakefern Chief Communications Officer Karen Meleta.

“Throughout his career, Joe furthered Wakefern’s commitment to community through his support of our ShopRite Partners In Caring program, which was created in 1999 and to date has donated more than $62 million to hunger-fighting organizations,” she added. 

The grocer shared that “creating the scholarship at Kean University was a fitting way to honor his legacy at Wakefern.”

About the author

Sommer Stockton

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Sommer joined The Shelby Report in January 2022 after graduating from Brenau University in Gainesville, GA with a B.A. and M.A. in Communications and Media Studies. Sommer is excited to learn about the grocery industry and share her findings with The Shelby Report's readers!

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