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HUTCHINSON, Kansas -- The Kansas Society of Washington, D.C. named Kroger Chairman and Chief Executive Officer David B. Dillon its "Kansan of the Year."
Dillon was recognized for the role that both he and The Kroger Co. play in supporting communities where its customers and associates live and work.
"Dave's leadership in corporate citizenship has followed him throughout his career, benefiting not just Kansas communities but neighborhoods across the country where Kroger's family of stores touch lives every day," Jon Hixson, president of The Kansas Society said in a released statement.
The ceremony was held nearly a year after a tornado devastated Greensburg, Kan., where Dillon Stores and Kwik Shop, both owned by Kroger, are based. Together, the two companies engaged in a speedy rebuilding effort and reopened a combination Dillons grocery store and Kwik Shop which enabled residents to meet their daily shopping needs.
Furthering its collective pledge to assist the community it serves, Dillons and Kwik Shop partnered with customers, local media outlets, the Red Cross and the Salvation Army to raise over $500,000 to support Greensburg families as the impacted region continues rebuilding efforts.
'I am honored to accept this award on behalf of our teams at Dillons and Kwik Shop. They worked hard to come up with the right solution when the Greensburg community needed help the most and they are the reason our customers choose us for their daily shopping needs," Dillon said in a released statement. "Our roots in Kansas run deep. We appreciate our customers and associates throughout this great state and thank them for their support as we move forward together."
Indeed, his roots run deep. Dillon's great-grandfather, J.S. Dillon, founded what would later become Dillons grocery stores. Today, Dillon Stores operates 97 stores in Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska, and employs over 12,000 associates. Kwik Shop operates 131 convenience stores in Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa.
Dillon was born and raised in Hutchinson. He is a graduate of the University of Kansas and also holds a law degree from Southern Methodist University. Before being named CEO of Kroger in 2003, he served in a variety of leadership roles including past chair of Leadership Hutchinson and Leadership Kansas.
Currently, he is a member of the board of directors of the Convergys Corp. and is the chairman of the board of trustees for the Urban League of Greater Cincinnati. He also serves on the board of trustees for the University of Kansas Endowment, the board of Bethesda, Inc. and the board of Catalyst.