Today is an exciting day for People's Grocery as we welcome Chris Babcock, our new General Manager to the team! When we first met Chris, we knew he would be a great addition to our team. Chris comes to us from Ray's Apple Market and has a background not only in Grocery Management, but is also passionate about natural foods!
We asked Chris to introduce himself to you. Here's what he had to say:
"I was born and raised in Phillips County, which is the "Cow and Calf Capitol of Kansas". During elementary school, I spent a good deal of time on the farms of my friends and family. I learned to appreciate the hard work that farmers do 365 days per year to provide food for their families and many others.
There was a strong sense of community in the town where I grew up. Many of the farmers would discuss weather and business over breakfast at the local restaurant several days per week. I remember going to the local butcher as a boy to purchase meat that came from locally raised cows. In the summer, most people had huge gardens and traded with anyone who wanted to.
I thought that all of the food in the grocery store came from local providers, until I began working there.
My parents bought the only grocery store in town when I was six years old and I started stocking shelves shortly thereafter. I learned about the industry by working in the produce and meat departments, seeing first-hand where products originated and how quickly they would perish. I also learned about chemicals and preservatives that were added to lengthen shelf-life by reading labels and asking questions.
I knew that I wanted to be an entrepreneur, so I studied Business Management at Kansas State University, majoring in Finance and minoring in Economics. My curiosity about other cultures led me to supplement my education with a Certificate of International Business.
When I moved back from studying abroad in Germany, I was fortunate to establish a connection to the Department of Pathobiology in the College of Veterinary Medicine and began working for the International Food Safety Network in 2007. There I researched topics in public health, including nutrition, food safety, risk communication, agriculture and technology. I learned to appreciate local and organic products immensely by the time I graduated.
Since 2009, I have managed large-volume stores (both public and privately-owned) and have desired a closer connection to the community. I am extremely happy to have been given the opportunity to use my skills and experience to help People's Grocery succeed."
Welcome to the team Chris! We're so excited for the knowledge and leadership we know you'll bring to the store!