Lori Raya, Albertsons Companies Southern California division president for Albertsons, Vons and Pavilions, has been chosen as the 2017 Top Women in Grocery Trailblazer by Progressive Grocer and the Network of Executive Women. Raya will be honored at the upcoming Top Women in Grocery gala celebration on November 9, 2017 in Rosemont, Illinois.
“Lori’s long-standing commitment to advancing and advocating for women leaders, both at her own company and across the industry, makes her truly deserving of recognition, and we are proud to honor Lori as our 2017 Top Women in Grocery Trailblazer,” said Jim Dudlicek, Progressive Grocer’s editorial director.
Raya has been a long-time, passionate supporter of the Network of Executive Women’s mission to advance women, grow business and transform the industry’s workplace, noted NEW President and CEO Sarah Alter.
An active leader in the NEW Southern California region, Raya has shared her personal insights at the NEW Executive Leaders Forum, and will be a panelist at the launch of NEW Idaho, September 19 in Boise. “As she has climbed to higher heights in the industry, Lori has lifted others,” Alter said. “She’s not only a vocal advocate for change, she creates change.”
A 30-year career
Over her 30-year career in the grocery industry, Raya’s responsibilities steadily expanded as she worked her way up the retail ranks to her current role. She began her career as a courtesy clerk in Safeway’s Denver Division and went on to run store operations in several of the company’s key divisions.
“With her track record of success running the largest division of Albertsons, Lori inspires those coming up behind her to strive to achieve, to dream big and give back to others. She truly is what we all want to be ‘when we grow up,’ even if we are already grown,” said Katie Martin, Progressive Grocer’s senior editor.
Raya is a graduate of the USC Food Industry Executive Program and resides in Orange County, California with her husband Sam, a retired Vons store manager.
Award’s sixth year
Established in 2012, the PG/NEW Trailblazer Award recognizes a single executive whose leadership, vision and influence have helped break new ground for women in the retail food industry. The first Trailblazer Award recipient was Lynn Marmer of The Kroger Company. Other recipients include Janel Haugarth of Supervalu, Larree Renda of Safeway, Meg Ham of Food Lion and Judy Spires of Kings Super Markets.
This year marks the beginning of the second decade of PG’s Top Women in Grocery awards program, which recognizes the contributions of women in three categories: Senior-level Executives, Rising Stars and Store Managers.
Visit the Top Women in Grocery homepage for information on the gala and daytime leadership program.