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CANASTOTA, N.Y. -- Nice N Easy Grocery Shoppes Inc. was chosen to receive the Canastota Chamber of Commerce’s Distinguished Business Award, and will be honored at the annual banquet to be held March 7 at the Rusty Rail, according to a report by Cnylink.com.
The company, founded by John MacDougall, president and chief executive officer, and his two partners, made its headquarters in the city of Canastota in 1980 when it purchased the former Clark’s Petroleum service station at the corner of Route 5 and 46, along with offices on Oxbow Road.
The company franchised its name to petroleum distributors and 50 stores grew to 100 within 10 years. Today there are 82 stores scattered over upstate New York, according to the report.
Additionally, the company’s philosophy starts at the top and involves the people who shop at Nice N Easy and the people who serve those shoppers, the report stated. Part of its success was contributed to its relationship with customers and employees, according to Ann Ammann, Nice N Easy’s project manager and customer relations officer, who said first and foremost MacDougall is a businessman, but one who knows how to treat his people.
"He treats you like no other boss," Ammann said in the report. "He praises you and rewards you. He puts people first."
Many Nice N Easy Grocery Shoppes are situated in small communities such as Canastota, and the company supports local community events. In Canastota, Nice N Easy sponsored the International Boxing Hall of Fame parade and has been a corporate sponsor for the chamber’s Business Expo since its inception.
Ammann said each year Nice N Easy selects four charities to support. For the past few years it contributed to the American Heart Association, the American Cancer Society, the Muscular Dystrophy Association and St. Jude’s Hospital.
MacDougall helped form the New York Association of Convenience Stores (NYACS) and was a member of its board of directors for six years. He was inducted into three industry "Hall of Fame" honors, including Convenience Store News, and locally, he received the Citizenship Award from the Canastota American Legion.