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Food Retail Public Policy Icon Anne McGhee Curry Receives FMI Woodard Award for Public Affairs

Curry Receives Honor on Eve of Her FMI Retirement
January 21, 2013
Anne Curry
SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. – January 21, 2013 –
Food Marketing Institute (FMI) today honored its own, Anne McGhee Curry, with the Glen P. Woodard, Jr. Award for her contributions to public affairs over the last three decades. Curry, vice president of government relations, will retire from FMI at the end of this month.

President and CEO Leslie G. Sarasin reflected on Curry’s tenure at FMI and her legacy within the food retail industry, saying, “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. 
 
 “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.

“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 in the front office for a Member of Congress on Capitol Hill, so from the very beginning, she was piecing together puzzles among the delegation. Her diplomatic skills were further developed working over the next several years for Louisiana’s former Sen. J. Bennett Johnston (D) and Mississippi’s Congressman Sonny Montgomery (D) and Sen. Thad Cochran (R).

In her early years, Curry demonstrated her political influence through her efforts to elect Sen. Cochran to the Senate, working on his campaign in her home state of Mississippi and ensuring his 1978 win with 45 percent plurality as the first Republican to win a Mississippi election.

Curry carried that confidence to Washington, and when Curry joined FMI in 1979, her personal growth at the association was nurtured by the mentor for whom she receives the award today, Glen Woodard. While Curry was on the FMI government relations staff, Woodard was a lobbyist for FMI member company Winn-Dixie. “Their relationship was a match made in political heaven,” remarked Curry’s longtime colleague, FMI Senior Vice President, Member Services, Dagmar Farr. Farr continued, “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 is a renowned political strategist, working over her career on issues as diverse as nutrition assistance (then-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.

Among some of her most notable 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-SC) 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 from a rash of adulterated products. 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.

Remarking on Curry’s impressive career, Sarasin noted, “After 34 years championing our vote and voice on Capitol Hill, Anne is retiring on January 30, leaving a legacy of honor and decency and passion reminiscent of the person for whom this award is named.”

For Media:
Woodard Award Background
See below the 2013 Glen P. Woodard, Jr. Award announcement at Midwinter:

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Food Marketing Institute proudly advocates on behalf of the food retail industry. FMI’s U.S. members operate nearly 40,000 retail food stores and 25,000 pharmacies, representing a combined annual sales volume of almost $770 billion. Through programs in public affairs, food safety, research, education and industry relations, FMI offers resources and provides valuable benefits to more than 1,225 food retail and wholesale member companies in the United States and around the world. FMI membership covers the spectrum of diverse venues where food is sold, including single owner grocery stores, large multi-store supermarket chains and mixed retail stores. For more information, visit www.fmi.org and for information regarding the FMI foundation, visit www.fmifoundation.org