Since I’m a grocery guy at heart, I would show them the first Albertsons store on 16th and State. Our founder, Joe Albertson, picked that location in 1939 and spent countless hours in that store getting to know each customer by name. From this single store, he launched a company that now stretches across the country and not only provides employment for hundreds of thousands of people, but also plays an integral role in the lives of millions of customers. Of course, next, I would take them to Albertsons Stadium.
In my career with Albertsons, I have had the opportunity to live in many parts of our great country, from Oregon to Utah, to Northern California, to Houston and most recently Chicago. However, there is something very special about Idaho. It just feels like home. Without a doubt, we are blessed with rich soil, breathtaking scenery and a pioneering spirit that has driven innovation, entrepreneurship and a real can-do attitude among our people. My experience in other locations has just confirmed that you can’t beat the quality of life here.
Our biggest challenge today is ensuring that our communities are prepared to grow at the speed of our world. No business is an island; it’s a complex network of other businesses and trades that make a company like Albertsons successful. We don’t just sell groceries; we employ attorneys, accountants, tech gurus, chefs, writers, architects, artists, educators – the gamut of talent that makes a company like ours function every day goes far beyond just having people who know how to sell groceries. I think all Treasure Valley businesses need to work with local education institutions – from public schools to our universities – to help them develop plans to meet business needs for the long term.
My hope is that we will look back on our work with Together Treasure Valley and say, “we did make a difference.” Our work improved our community, made us stronger and helped people grow as individuals. I want us to feel like we put together some serious building blocks for an outstanding future.
Albertsons is proud to call Idaho our home, and we are committed to giving back to the community that has supported us for so many years. I feel fortunate to be on the Together Treasure Valley board because I know that our efforts are going to create positive outcomes today that will yield even greater returns for our community in the future.
The Treasure Valley has grown tremendously over the years. When you look around, you see new neighborhoods and new businesses springing up everywhere. Downtown Boise has been transformed into a Northwest showcase. This influx of new people has brought with it a fresh set of ideas, innovations and a feeling of excitement and vitality to our community.
I think we have made tremendous strides over the last few years to address the accelerated growth while maintaining our overall strong quality of life. Programs such as Energize Our Neighborhoods bring businesses and organizations together to help improve the economic vitality, safety and vibrancy of neighborhoods. We need to continue such efforts to ensure that every family, in every neighborhood, has the same opportunity to receive the services and education needed to help them create a happy and prosperous future.
I love the Boise River. Our offices overlook the river, and being that close to nature never gets old. Whether it’s covered in snow or bathed in sunshine, there is something new every day; it’s a constant discovery. If you’re lucky, you might even see a bald eagle or two.
Bob Butler, a retired Albertsons executive, has been very influential in my life and career. He truly inspired me to work harder and to remember that we are in a people business. Whether you were a customer or an employee, when you were talking with Bob, at that moment you were the most important person in the room. Bob has mentored hundreds of people in our business and along the way he made everyone feel that they were absolutely critical to our success.
Albertsons operating philosophy today is the same commitment that Joe Albertson made all those years ago to his Boise customers: offer customers the products they want, at a fair price, with lots of tender loving care. To us, it’s more than a way of doing business; it’s at the heart of every decision we make. Joe Albertson instilled a strong sense of giving back in our culture, and more than 75 years later, it’s still a huge part of what we do every year. Our employees dedicate thousands of hours each year to make the Treasure Valley the best place to live. We share our time and expertise on charitable boards to help maximize their effectiveness. Of course, we donate food and money to organizations that enrich the Treasure Valley today while creating a more prosperous future for our community.
In the 27 years that our company has sponsored the Albertsons Boise Open golf tournament, we have helped Treasure Valley charities earn more than $18 million toward their causes and local efforts. And it’s mostly due to one program: The Tyson Foods TICKETS Fore CHARITY™. This amazing program offers local non-profit organizations the opportunity to sell tournament tickets and keep 100% of the money from those sales. What most people don’t know is that the Albertsons Boise Open pioneered that program, and it is now the standard for more than 20 golf tournaments on the PGA Tour, Web.com Tour, Champions Tour and LPGA Tour.
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