SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Food Marketing Institute presented its Glen P. Woodard Award to longtime industry advocate Anne McGhee Curry at FMI Midwinter Executive Conference here on Monday.
Curry is set to retire as FMI’s vice president of government relations at the end of January.
"There is such divine justice to Anne’s receiving the Glen P. Woodard Award, as she walked side-by-side with Glen Woodard on Capitol Hill for two decades until his death in 1995,” said Leslie G. Sarasin, president and chief executive officer, FMI.
“Anne Curry has represented the industry on Capitol Hill for 34 years, has led and grown the FMI political program, and has effectively worked with both sides of the aisle and both sides of Capitol Hill while maintaining a stellar reputation through the many legislative battles she has faced,” Sarasin continued. “This has all seemed to come naturally to Anne as she is one of the very few lobbyists remaining in Washington who is truly bipartisan.”
Curry began her career on Capitol Hill, working for former Sen. J. Bennett Johnston, D-La.; Rep. Sonny Montgomery, D-Miss.; and Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss.
Curry joined FMI in 1979, where her mentor was the the man whose name adorns the award she received on Monday, Glen Woodard. While Curry was on the FMI government relations staff, Woodard was a lobbyist for FMI member company Winn-Dixie Stores.
“Their relationship was a match made in political heaven,” remarked Curry’s longtime colleague, Dagmar Farr, FMI senior vice president, member services. “Glen associated himself with people who could make things happen on the Hill; Glen was a vote-counter – and Anne could get the votes.”
Curry over her career has worked on issues as diverse as nutrition assistance (food stamps), energy, trucking and product tampering. Curry led a team of seven lobbyists when she was promoted to FMI’s vice president of legislative and public affairs in 1998.
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Among some of her accomplishments at FMI, Curry worked on the Motor Carrier Act of 1980, specifically on backhaul provisions, a significant piece of transit language that helped save diesel fuel and reduced the upward pressures of food prices. In 1982, Curry worked with former Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., to pass a bill that defined product tampering as a federal offense, helping to identify a significant gap in the law that protected retailers and consumers.
In 2003, Curry testified before the Senate on the reauthorization of the Special Supplemental Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), a program that would enable users to stretch their WIC dollars, broaden their access to products and stores, and make it easier for retailers to serve them — all at no additional cost to taxpayers.
Curry remains an anti-hunger advocate, serving on the advisory council for Common Threads, a non-profit organization that teaches low-income children the nutritional benefits and an appreciation for culturally diverse cooking.
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