After a one-year hiatus due to the pandemic, the Convenience Store News Hall of Fame and Future Leaders in Convenience returned as live events last year. Although both were produced virtually via video conferencing in 2020, I was reminded last year of the personal interaction, networking and education that goes on at these two co-located in-person events that make them special.
In 2019, I coined the term "Leadership Day" in the convenience store industry to describe this special gathering of past, present and future leaders of our industry. This year's Leadership Day, consisting of the 36th annual Hall of Fame dinner and the fifth annual Future Leaders in Convenience (FLIC) Summit, will be held Nov. 21 in Charlotte, N.C.
The day will begin with the largest group of emerging leaders we've ever honored. Thirty-three young and talented convenience industry people will take the stage to accept their FLIC awards and participate in a unique, interactive workshop designed to hone their leadership skills and help them overcome whatever challenges they face in today's business world.
Last year's emcee, Matt Domingo, senior director of external communications for Reynolds American Inc., advised the FLIC honorees to lend a helping hand and offer advice not only to their direct reports, but also to other colleagues around them. Guest speaker Roy Strasburger, CEO of StrasGlobal, added that leaders should strive to pay it forward. "We are all young enough to still create whatever legacy we want," he said. "It doesn't have to be financial or even tangible. It could be as much or as little as someone saying, 'Roy was a good and fair person' when I wasn't standing in front of them."
This year's FLIC program promises to be just as strong, with additional workshop and interactive sessions added. Among our guest speakers are Doug Haugh, president of Parkland USA; Danielle Mattiussi, former vice president of retail operations for Maverik — Adventure's First Stop; and Stephanie Myers, media and public relations manager for Pilot Co. Our thanks goes to founding sponsor Reynolds for its support of this important industry initiative.
The day will be capped off with the induction of the newest retailer and supplier members of the CSNews Hall of Fame, and the presentation of the 2022 Retailer Executive of the Year award.
This year's Hall of Fame inductees are Brian Hannasch, president and CEO of Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc., and Brent Cotten, vice president of customer and industry affairs at The Hershey Co. In addition, Haugh will be honored as the 2022 Retailer Executive of the Year.
Hall of Fame sponsors include Altria, BIC, Hershey, Mondelez and Reynolds. If you are interested in attending or sponsoring this year's Hall of Fame or Future Leaders in Convenience event, please contact our Vice President/Brand Director Paula Lashinsky at [email protected].
I hope you plan to be a part of this educational and celebratory day.