Ron Danko, longtime baking executive, dies at 75

by Josh Sosland
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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Ronald D. Danko Sr., a lifelong baker who spent most of his career running baking operations for Wegman Foods Markets, died Jan. 22 at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester.

Mr. Danko was born in August 1937 in Arnold, Pa., in an apartment above his father’s retail bakery – Andy’s Bake Shop.  After graduating from Arnold High School in 1955, he worked with his father Andrew and brother Richard at the family bakery and honed his skills as a baker, cake decorator and bakery manager.

He took management positions at baking companies in Pittsburgh and Dayton, Ohio, in the years after the family baking business was sold. He headed bakery operations at Wegmans for 32 years, managing the supermarket chain’s central bakery plant and in-store bakery departments.

He was a member of the American Society of Baking, American Bakers Association, and at one time, served on the board of directors of the Retail Bakers’ of America.

After retiring from Wegmans, Mr. Danko was a U.S. business agent for Pierre Herme’ of Paris, a pastry/gourmet company, for two years.

In 2006, Mr. Danko joined his brother Richard in a consulting firm (Summit Industries International, L.L.C.) as vice-president.

Later that year, he joined Baker’s Pride, Inc., a wholesale baking company in Burlington, Iowa, as chief executive officer. He remained in that position until 2012, when he retired because of illness.

Survivors include his wife, Linda Rossolo Danko of  the home in Rochester; a son, Ronald D. Danko Jr.; a daughter, Linda Seelman; two grandchildren, Jacob Parker and Claire Danko’ and step-grandchildren Paul and David Seelman, all of the Rochester area.  He also is survived by his wife’s daughter, Jennifer Rossolo-Meyers and step-grandchildren Connor and Casey Meyers.

Memorials may be sent to the American Institute of Baking, Scholarship Endowment Fund, 1213 Bakers Way Manhattan, KS. 66502.
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