PHOENIX — Arthur B. Drogue, retired senior vice president of customer development for the Americas at Unilever, and Richard G. Wolford, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Del Monte Foods, were presented with the William H. Albers Industry Relations Award by Food Marketing Institute.
The Albers awards, which recognize community service and excellence in trading partner relations, were presented at FMI’s Midwinter Executive Conference here.
Drogue retired from Unilever last year after more than 11 years. He led Unilever’s U.S. customer development organization during eight years of outstanding growth and earnings success while merging five separate companies into one of the world’s preeminent consumer packaged goods companies. Before joining Unilever, Drogue held various sales leadership positions with Best Foods and Nabisco. He was also a group vice president for the consulting firm Northeastern Organization, and worked for more than 20 years at General Mills.
Wolford began his career in the food industry at Dole Foods, joining the finance department in 1967. He was named president of Dole Packaged Foods in 1982, a position he held until 1987 when he left to join the food industry’s private sector. He partnered with venture capital investors to invest in and develop businesses in the food industry. In 1995, having identified Del Monte Foods as a high potential acquisition opportunity, Wolford began working with TPG (formerly Texas Pacific Group) to acquire the company. He was named CEO of Del Monte Foods in 1997 after the completed acquisition. Shortly thereafter, Wolford was elected president of Del Monte in 1998 and chairman in 2000.
The William H. Albers Award was introduced in 1955 in honor of the first chairman of the Super Market Institute, one of FMI’s predecessor organizations.