Retail | Wholesale | Food | Beverage 2023: LORI RAYA
PRESIDENT, MID-ATLANTIC DIVISION, KROGER, GLEN ALLEN
In 2021, Raya became president of Kroger’s mid-Atlantic division, overseeing more than 100 stores in five states and 18,000 employees.
She brings more than three decades in the grocery business to the job, mostly spent at Safeway and Albertsons, including as president of Safeway’s Vons division from 2012 to 2015. In 2018, Albertsons acquired Safeway, and Raya became division president for Southern California, leading the store brands’ integration. In 2019, she left the company for a chief merchandising and marketing officer role at wholesaler SpartanNash and joined Kroger two years later.
In October 2022, Kroger and Albertsons announced a $24.6 billion merger agreement set to be completed in 2024, but the Federal Trade Commission has recently cracked down on major mergers, and some Virginia Kroger workers are concerned that unionized stores could be closed due to the deal. Unionized workers in Richmond and Hampton Roads ratified a collective bargaining agreement with the chain in August 2021, giving them raises and maintaining their health care plan.
A graduate of Colorado Mesa University and the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business, Raya received an honorary doctorate from CMU in 2018.