Conant, Wolford receive G.M.A. achievement awards

by Eric Schroeder
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COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. — The Grocery Manufacturers Association recognized Douglas R. Conant and Richard G. Wolford — two former chairmen of the board of directors — with Hall of Achievement Awards at an event held Aug. 21 in connection with the annual G.M.A. Executive Conference.

Mr. Conant became the 11th leader of Campbell Soup Co. in its 140-year history when he was named president and chief executive officer in January 2001. His 25 years of food industry experience at General Mills, Inc., Kraft Foods Inc. and Nabisco helped him lead Campbell “out of a precipitous decline in market value and significantly enhance the company’s financial profile,” the G.M.A. said. Mr. Conant stepped down from the helm of Campbell in July. He has been a member of the G.M.A. board of directors since 2001, and he was chairman from January 2008 through January 2010.

Mr. Wolford began his career in the food industry in 1967 when he joined the finance department at Dole Foods. He eventually was named president of Dole Packaged Foods in 1982 and stayed with the company through 1987. Ten years later, working with a private equity partnership, he led the acquisition of Del Monte Foods and joined the company as its c.e.o. Mr. Wolford was elected chairman of the board in May 2000. Mr. Wolford announced his retirement from Del Monte earlier this year. Mr. Wolford was chairman of the G.M.A. board of directors from January 2010 through February 2011.

“Although each are unique in their contributions to the consumer packaged goods industry, both of our 2011 Hall of Achievement Award winners have exemplified unparalleled leadership, steadfast commitment to industry excellence, and outstanding records of personal achievement throughout their careers,” said Pamela Bailey, president and c.e.o. of the G.M.A. “Rick Wolford and Doug Conant are both remarkable visionaries and community leaders who have had significant impact on the industry over the last several decades.”

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