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Rising Stars

08/15/2016

KRISTINA APPEN

Special Projects Senior Manager, RaceTrac Petroleum Inc.

  • Appen began her career at RaceTrac Petroleum in 2011 in the Operations Reporting Department as an analyst. She was quickly promoted to a new role within operations as a project manager, facilitating the opening of more than 30 new stores.
  • After two years in operations, she was again promoted to the Special Projects Department, where she began working on various cross-functional initiatives.
  • Now as special projects senior manager, the Alpharetta, Ga., resident is actively working to expand innovation at RaceTrac.

ANGIE BELL

District Manager, Texas, Murphy USA Inc.

  • Bell leads 10 store managers and multiple individual stores in a geography including greater San Antonio, Eagle Pass, Floresville, and Pleasanton, Texas, which has enjoyed significant growth in recent years.
  • She has influence over a $113.7-million annual operations budget.
  • Bell was honored with Murphy USA’s Division Leadership Award in 2015.

CARLA BOYINGTON

Director, Center Store, Core-Mark International Inc.

  • Boyington leads the team responsible for developing the center-of-store categories for the convenience distributor.
  • Her influence is felt not only at the division level, but also as the face of Core-Mark to many of the company’s customers, offering support and knowledge on how to grow their sales faster and more profitably.
  • Boyington has served Core-Mark for nearly 17 years, previously working for McLane Co. Inc.

LEANNE BUDOLFSON

Employee Communications Manager, Human Resources, Cumberland Farms Inc.

  • Budolfson, who began at Cumberland Farms in 2014, is responsible for establishing and executing the communications strategy for the organization’s approximately 7,000 employees.
  • In just two years, she has relaunched the company intranet, increased executive leadership visibility and connection to employees, revitalized meetings and events, and set the content strategy for a mobile application.
  • Budolfson has served in the communications field for more than 10 years, including stints in public affairs for the U.S. Air Force in Germany, as well as roles with Dunkin’ Brands and Pepperidge Farm.

BRANDI CUSHMAN

Category Manager, Tobacco, C.N. Brown Co.

  • As one of two category managers at C.N. Brown, Cushman manages a variety of categories including tobacco.
  • The 20-year company veteran’s territory comprises 87 convenience stores in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont.
  • Cushman is recognized each year for her work with the Muscular Dystrophy Association as she and her team coordinate an annual event, The C.N. Brown Miracle Ball.

TRISH DAUBERT

District Manager, Turkey Hill Minit Markets, The Kroger Co.

  • Daubert has been a district manager at Turkey Hill Minit Markets for the past five years, where she is responsible for the successful operation of 11 convenience stores.
  • Her primary responsibilities include supporting the company vision, implementing strategies to achieve goals, and building store sales and gross profits.
  • Daubert recently won Turkey Hill’s 2015 District Manager of the Year award.

HEATHER DAVIS

Executive Director, Finance Integration, CrossAmerica Partners LP

  • Davis, a certified public accountant, is responsible for CrossAmerica’s consolidation, retail operations and integration of newly acquired retail operations.
  • She has quickly learned the intricate and complicated financial makeup of CrossAmerica as a master limited partnership and has a “natural aptitude for solving complex financial and business problems,” according to her co-workers.
  • Davis previously worked with Valero Energy Corp., Ernst & Young LLP, and Arthur Andersen LLP.

STEPHANIE DORSEY

Account Manager, Mid-Atlantic, Altria Group Distribution Co.

  • Dorsey’s chief responsibilities include calling on wholesale and large retail chains in the Mid-Atlantic territory, providing knowledge on Altria’s retail programs.
  • She is instrumental in the education process within Altria’s sales team regarding new products and helping coworkers understand programs and changes in the tobacco industry.
  • Dorsey was awarded Altria’s Women Sales Network Region 1 Woman of the Year award in 2015.

CAROLINE FILCHAK

Director, Human Resources, Clipper Petroleum

  • Filchak is responsible for the human resource needs of Clipper Petroleum’s 350 team members across Georgia and South Carolina.
  • She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of North Georgia in 2011. She also earned her master’s in Business Administration from Mercer University in 2013.
  • Filchak currently serves on the Business Advisory Committee for Project SEARCH, the Business Advisory Committee at North Hall High School, is a student in Leadership Hall County, and serves as a director for the Clipper Petroleum Foundation.

LAURA WHITE

Category Manager, Tobacco, RaceTrac Petroleum Inc.

  • White manages the multimillion-dollar tobacco category for RaceTrac’s 400-plus convenience stores.
  • She is responsible for product assortment, budgets, merchandising to consumer, optimizing category profitability, and negotiating contracts with manufacturers.
  • White has 10 years of previous experience in the soft drinks category with Cadbury Schweppes, Dr Pepper Snapple Group and Big Red, where she called upon convenience, grocery, mass and club stores.

JAMIE KEIFER

District Manager, Tom Thumb Food Stores, The Kroger Co.

  • Keifer leads a store management team comprising 11 locations with a combined total of 100-plus associates across Florida and Alabama.
  • She and her team are responsible for delivering financial results, as well as increasing both customer and associate engagement.
  • Keifer, who began with Tom Thumb in 1990 as an hourly store associate, was selected as the retailer’s 2015 District Manager of the Year.

ABBEY MITCHELL

Senior Trade Manager, Trade & Pricing General Mills Inc.

  • At General Mills since 2007, Mitchell leads the Trade and Pricing Team for General Mills Convenience, where she is responsible for the planning and development of trade strategies and activation tools for the channel.
  • She is the company ambassador for the Women in Foodservice Forum and an active member in the General Mills Women’s Mentor Circles.
  • Mitchell won the 2014 Champion’s Award for her trusted leadership, and a 2013 Special Achievement Award.

MARY MOR KETTER

Vice President, Short Stop Food Marts

  • Morketter became part owner of Fayetteville, N.C.-based Short Stop Food Marts in 2013, operator of 48 convenience stores in eastern North Carolina
  • She oversees five supervisors who report to her weekly, and is also a buyer for the chain.
  • Morketter began at Short Stop in 1995 as a clerk.

SUZANNE MUSIC

Merchandising Coordinator, Loaf ‘N Jug C-stores, The Kroger Co.

  • Music provides merchandising/marketing direction and support to a group of 15 stores.
  • In her prior role as Loaf ‘N Jug category manager, she introduced several new and innovative programs, with the most impactful still part of the retailer’s portfolio today.
  • Music has worked with numerous nonprofit 501(c)3 animal welfare groups to raise funds to support spay/neuter programs. She’s also been involved in raising money to provide medical services to companion animals of low-income individuals and families.

HEATHER NICHOLAS

District Manager, Kwik Shop, The Kroger Co.

  • Nicholas has direct oversight of 13 stores within Kwik Shop’s Hutchinson, Kan., market.
  • Her responsibilities include supporting the company vision and mission statements; ensuring all stores are providing customer service that meets or exceeds company standards; and ensuring all assigned stores operate within established budgets.
  • In 2015, Nicholas was named the Kroger Convenience Store Group’s Community Service Award winner for her work with Camp Hope, a local camp for children with cancer, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation where she is a wish giver.

SHERIL RETSON

Category Manager, Center Store, Chevron Corp.

  • Retson is responsible for the center of store (COS) consumer value proposition for the ExtraMile branded, Chevron company-owned, company-operated and franchise classes of trade.
  • She develops and deploys product assortment/selection, space allocation, visual presentation, pricing, promotions and merchandise performance review to differentiate Chevron’s ExtraMile offering.
  • Retson also oversees category sales, margin percentage and gross margin dollars, including responsibility for the COS portion of overall store financial metrics, along with handling contract negotiations.

MARY RIDOUT

Manager, Non-Foods Merchandise, United Refining Corp. (Kwik Fill)

  • In her 18th year at United Refining, Ridout oversees the company’s annual trade show, where it brings together more than 120 vendors and 350 managers as a team building/buying event.
  • She also coordinates United Refining’s Annual Incentive Trip for winning managers every year.
  • Ridout sits on the board of her local church and is active in many community events.

JACKIE SMITH

District Manager, Texas, Murphy USA Inc.

  • Smith leads 11 store managers in a geography including northwest Houston, Cleveland, and Huntsville, Texas, and has influence over an $88-million-per-year operations budget.
  • She is responsible for delivering best-in-class customer service, achieving measurable positive and consistent results, development of the store management team, and ensuring consistent operational excellence.
  • Smith was awarded Murphy USA’s Division Leadership Award in 2015. Her goal is to become division director of the convenience store retailer in an effort to lead an even larger market.

JULIA STAFFORD

Senior Category Manager, Sunoco LP

  • Stafford manages several diverse categories for Sunoco’s Stripes division, including cigarettes, other tobacco products, general merchandise, bakery, dairy, ice cream and ice at more than 750 locations.
  • She is responsible for merchandising, financial planning, logistics, strategy, marketing and product development across multiple categories.
  • Stafford is an advocate of Stripes’ involvement in the community via the Children’s Miracle Network, March of Dimes, United Way and 4-H programs.

LAURA L. WAYNE

Director, National Retail Sales, The Coca-Cola Co.

  • Wayne manages the business relationship between Coca-Cola and one of the largest convenience retail chains in the United States.
  • She also manages and ensures alignment with cross-functional account teams at Coca-Cola Refreshments, including marketing, field execution and independent bottlers.
  • Wayne was successful in adding Coca-Cola Freestyle to 179 Texas convenience stores, marking the first convenience retail chain in the Texas market with Coca-Cola Freestyle.

COURTNEY WILLIAMS

Senior Category Manager, Family Express Corp.

  • Williams recently joined Family Express after seven years at Sheetz Inc., where she managed the Pennsylvania-based retailer’s ready-to-eat food program, Hot Cart application, bakery, produce and ice cream.
  • She was an integral member of Sheetz’s Innovation Team and managed its traveling coffee event trucks to help build the brand within local communities.
  • Williams obtained a master’s degree in Innovation & Creativity from Drexel University in 2015, following up her previous bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management from Penn State University.