Collings Retires As Raley's CEO
es L. Collings, chief executive officer of Raley's Supermarkets and Drug Centers here, retired last week after 42 years with the company. Collings, 72, will maintain an office here and act as a consultant to the company. Succeeding him as CEO will be Michael J. Teel, 46-year-old grandson of the chain's founder, who assumed the title of president from Collings last August. Teel has been with the family-owned chain since 1988 and has been groomed as Collings' successor since he was named assistant to the president in 1993.
Raley's operates 116 stores in northern California and Nevada, with volume in excess of $2.4 billion. Its operations include 68 Raley's Superstores, 17 Bel Air Markets, 27 Nob Hill Foods units and four Food Source warehouse stores.
Collings joined Raley's in 1956 as an accountant, when the company had eight stores. However, he worked so closely with Thomas P. Raley, the chain's founder, that he became his right hand man, Collings said in a recent interview with the California Grocers Association magazine. "For the first 12 years with Mr. Raley, I practically lived in his skin," Collings said. "We were together all the time.
"I learned how he'd think, how he'd react. And he very quickly began to have confidence in my ability and let me do things far beyond what I normally would have done in the position I was hired into." In 1969, Raley gave up the title of president to Collings, and in 1992, after Raley's death, Collings succeeded him as chief executive officer.
According to the company, Collings has been involved in the selection and development of virtually all units. It also said he was influential in the purchase of the Eagle Thrifty Drug chain in Nevada, which enabled Raley's to enter Nevada and develop food-and-drug combination stores, and a primary force in creating Mid-Valley Dairy in 1981. Collings was also responsible for establishing Super Store Industries, a partnership that distributes dry groceries, frozen foods and dairy products to supermarkets throughout northern California and Nevada.
At a recent retirement dinner, Collings said, "When cut, I'll always bleed Raley's red."
FDI Selects a Vice President
FALLS CHURCH, Va. -- Food Distributors International here has named Bob Gatty vice president of communications and marketing. He will report to John R. Block, FDI's president.
Gatty, who most recently was the editor of Grocery Headquarters, a food-industry trade magazine, succeeds Scott Ramminger, who resigned to become president and chief executive officer of the American Wood Preservers Institute.
In addition to his editorial experience, Gatty also was an administrative assistant to former Reps. Edwin B. Forsythe, R-N.J., and James J. Florio, D-N.J.
New Position Filled at Roundy's
PEWAUKEE, Wis. -- Roundy's here announced that Randy T. Benz has been named to the new position of corporate controller and financial director. He will report to Robert D. Ranus, chief financial officer.
Benz, who joined Roundy's in 1989, has held several posts during his tenure with the company. Most recently, he was corporate director of financial planning. In his new role, Benz will oversee corporate accounting, accounts payable, and all financial reporting. He also will direct the activity of the corporate staff accountants and functional department heads.