Howard Glickberg, the longtime CEO of Fairway Market whose grandfather founded the New York business, is retiring effective immediately, Fairway Group Holdings said Monday.
Glickberg, who most recently served as vice chair of real estate development for Fairway, will remain a member of the retailer’s board of directors, Fairway said. He worked with the company for more than 40 years, serving as its CEO until 2011.
"Howie has been indefatigable and indispensable to Fairway's growth over the past four decades," Jack Murphy, CEO, said in a statement. "It was his vision to bring together the corner butcher, bakery, cheese monger, fish market, and farmer's market all under one roof, and add in an unparalleled selection of traditional, specialty and organic groceries at the best prices. All this has brought Fairway iconic status and enabled the company to truly earn the moniker ‘Like No Other Market.’"
Glickberg, who began unofficially "working" at Fairway as a child when he would accompany his father to the original 74th Street location and then officially while a college student, said it was simply time to step down.
"I've dedicated the past 40 years of my life to building the world's greatest food store," said Glickberg, 67. "It's been my life's work 24 hours a day, seven days a week. In the past when I would take a little vacation, I would somehow wind up visiting a supermarket. And if I saw an apple out of place I would fix it. So I've never traveled anywhere without Fairway on my mind."
Glickberg began his full-time involvement with Fairway Market in 1974 — six years after he graduated from C.W. Post College and after a stint as a stockbroker and a part-time staff member at a fish market. In 1975, to build the company, he partnered with David Sneddon and Harold Seybert, and began adding specialty items, expanding the space and emphasizing fresh fruit and vegetables that is at the core of all Fairway Markets.
Eventually expanding to 15 units, Fairway was noted for operating some of the most productive grocery stores in the country in terms of sales per square foot.
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