Top 10 Nominees for 2014 Nicholas J. Tocco Award Honored

Modesto, Calif., January 14, 2014 – Save Mart, S-Mart Foods, Lucky, Maxx Value Foods, and FoodMaxx stores –honored George Bettencourt, manager of Save Mart in Ceres, Calif., with the prestigious Nicholas J. Tocco Store Manager of the Year Award. This is the 20th year of the company’s coveted award.

“George Bettencourt is a top-rate store manager. He has demonstrated a continuous commitment to excellence for store performance, customer service and commitment to his community. He is a strong leader and great person,” explained Steve Junqueiro, President and COO of Save Mart Supermarkets.

Bettencourt started his grocery career at an Albertsons store in 1986, working his way up from utility clerk to store manager. Married for 13 years, he is heavily involved in the Turlock and Ceres communities. Bettencourt is passionate about running a store strong on the basics—service, freshness and value.

“Ceres is a tight-knit community and I am proud to be part of its fabric. Our shoppers are also our neighbors and friends. This award was given to me, but it also belongs to the store team who work hard every day to provide top-level customer service,” explains Bettencourt.

During the company’s annual management appreciation gala on Saturday, January 11, ten nominees for the award were presented. Al Rojewski, Kingsburg Save Mart Store Manager, and Mike Cook, Lucky Store Manger in Oakley– were named first and second runners-up, respectively.

This year’s Nicholas J. Tocco nominees also included:

  • Rich Alstad – Save Mart store on Pelandale Road in Modesto
  • Tony Angoletta – Save Mart store in Riverbank
  • John Bettencourt – Lucky store on Portola Ave. in Livermore
  • David Gonzalez – Save Mart store on N. Milburn in Fresno
  • Gerg Gilliam – Save Mart store in Hollister
  • Kevin Miyasaki – Save Mart store on W. Clinton in Fresno
  • Al Rojewski – Save Mart store in Kingsburg
  • Greg Wagenman – Save Mart store on Geer Road in Turlock

The Store Manager of the Year award, presented by Save Mart Supermarkets owner and Chairman Bob Piccinini, was created in honor of the late Nicholas J. Tocco, co-founder of Save Mart Supermarkets. Nominees for the award must meet the company’s standards for store performance, customer service, and community involvement. The winner receives an etched blown glass vase, travel certificate, and cash. Runners up receive a cash award and all nominees receive a framed certificate.