Dec. 14, 2022 — Publix Super Markets recognized Business Development Director of Produce Curt Epperson as the support recipient of the 2022 George W. Jenkins Award at the company’s retail operations conference.
Epperson exemplifies the mission of Publix founder George W. Jenkins, known to associates as Mr. George. Epperson’s positivity and approachable demeanor make it easy for associates to both learn from him and seek help when needed. Epperson is always willing to listen and learn from anyone he meets who may have different perspectives or ideas.
“I share my steps to success with my associates,” Epperson said. “Show up, be disciplined, work hard and have a great attitude. If you do those things, you can go far in our company.”
Epperson made impacts in his community during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many farmers lost business when schools, hotels, restaurants and other establishments closed, while more individuals and families turned to food banks for assistance. Publix launched an initiative to purchase the produce and milk farmers were forced to discard and donate it directly to Feeding America member food banks throughout the Southeast. As part of this initiative, Epperson was instrumental in coordinating the purchase and delivery of the food donations.
He was honored to have been named a recipient of the award, referencing the long history and prestige behind it.
“It’s overwhelming when you work with individuals who think highly enough of you to consider you for this award,” said Epperson. “This is a celebration for a lifetime.”
About the honoree
Epperson started with Publix in 1984 as a produce clerk at Food World, a branch of Publix, in Leesburg, Florida. He worked his way up through the company in the produce department becoming a produce manager in 1994. Epperson moved into a retail coordinator position in the Lakeland Division, then was promoted to category manager in 2004. He has been in his current position since 2017.
About the George W. Jenkins Award
Named after Publix’s founder, the George W. Jenkins Award is presented to one store manager from each of the company’s five divisions and one support area manager who exemplify leadership, perpetuate the Publix culture and demonstrate their commitment to his vision. As part of the award, each recipient is presented with a special green Publix jacket, marking them as a member of this deserving group of honorees.
Epperson joins Atlanta Division Store Manager Phil Postle, Charlotte Division Store Manager Mark Taggart, Jacksonville Division Store Manager Steve Myers, Lakeland Division Store Manager Jenniffer Kras and Miami Division Store Manager Philip Wearsch as this year’s George W. Jenkins Award recipients.