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Top Women in Convenience: Single-Store Owners

NATIONAL REPORT — The Convenience Store News Top Women in Convenience program celebrates a diverse array of women — from retailer, supplier and wholesaler companies — making a positive impact in the convenience retail channel.

This year’s judging panel selected 22 senior-level leaders, five mentors, 18 rising stars, five store managers and three single-store owners to receive the esteemed title of Top Women in Convenience for 2015. Like last year, the panel also chose five nominees as the best of the best from among all the nominations and awarded them the title of Women of the Year.

Here are the 2015 honorees in the single-store owners category:

General Manager/Owner-Operator, On The Go

  • Colosimo has been in the convenience store business for more than 30 years.
  • She rebranded her Exxon station as “On The Go” with matching graphics that also included an upgraded coffee bar.
  • Colosimo has turned her eye toward category management. She went category by category, and made sure her product mix was superior to her competitors and that she was priced aggressively to gain volume.

Owner, Black Bear Convenience Store

  • She was a truck driver for many years, as well as a clerk for NAPA Auto Parts before she and her husband bought a sporting goods store. After her husband had a heart attack, they purchased a convenience store/gas station, which she operates herself.
  • A self-taught entrepreneur with only a sixth-grade formal education, Lacour has increased revenue for the Black Bear Convenience Store, while also inspiring the entire community with her dedication to community service.

Part Owner/Manager, Wooly’s One Stop

  • McCartney oversees all aspects of the store, from hiring and firing to budget and layout. Her stated philosophy is “Customer service comes first; we’ll deal with our problems after the customer is taken care of.”
  • McCartney is a mentor to her employees at work and at home. She has reportedly saved marriages, fixed broken homes, helped abused and neglected children, sheltered battered wives and counseled customers.
  • She is an elected school board member and plays an active role in the community.
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