NC Retail Merchants Association Awards 2015 Retailer of the Year

Raleigh, NC (May 8, 2015) – The North Carolina Retail Merchants Association (NCRMA), the voice of retail in North Carolina, honored four leading retail businesses  today with Retailer of the Year awards. The awards were presented during NCRMA’s Annual Retail Refresh “lunch and learn,” this year held at the Marriott in Winston-Salem, NC.

“We are proud of all of our retail members, who work day in and day out to provide superior value to their customers, and these four award recipients have served North Carolina’s retail industry with distinction,” said NCRMA President and General Counsel Andy Ellen. “They deserve statewide recognition because they are helping to sustain local economies, changing to meet the needs of their customers, and giving back to their local communities.”

Recipients of the 2015 Retailer of the Year Awards were:

  • Lowes Foods Stores – Founded in 1954, North Wilkesboro, NC
  • Monkee’s – Corporate Office in Winston-Salem, NC; Founded in 1995 in Wilmington, NC
  • Ray Price Harley Davidson – Founded in 1972, Raleigh, NC
  • Walgreens – District Office in Morrisville, NC; Founded in 1901 in Chicago, IL


NCRMA’s Retailer of the Year Awards is an annual recognition to celebrate retail excellence, from the smallest independent retailers to the largest chains across all sectors.  Entries are reviewed by a selection committee consisting of retailers, retail educators, retired retail executives and suppliers to the retail industry. Businesses are evaluated according to their contributions to the state’s economy, their business innovations, as well as their impact on local communities. The awards are annually presented during NCRMA’s Retail Refresh, a business development lunch and learn event that gives business owners opportunities to engage and discover new strategies to succeed in one of the most dynamic sectors of North Carolina’s economy.

This year’s event featured Inmar’s Mobile Commerce Expert Greg Kerr, who offered insights into how retailers can promote and protect their businesses online. A panel discussion addressed reputation management, cyber liability and how to use social media effectively. Panel participants included SnapRetail’s Dan Bressan, JB Media Group’s Rich Owings, and Cranfill Sumner & Hartzog’s Rupen Fofaria. Last year, NCRMA introduced This is Retail North Carolina, a statewide campaign to counter common misconceptions about the retail industry.

“NCRMA was formed in 1902 to represent the interests of retailers before the various bodies of state government, and more than one hundred years later, we are still walking the halls of the legislative building and regulatory agencies to make sure North Carolina is a good place to do business,” said NCRMA President and General Counsel Andy Ellen. “What many do not realize is that the retail industry is the number one private employer in our state, employing 1 in 4 North Carolinians. I am proud to work for the retail industry and prouder still that this industry boasts 23 of North Carolina’s 100 largest private employers including four of the top ten.”

About the North Carolina Retail Merchants Association

The North Carolina Retail Merchants Association (NCRMA) is a nonprofit trade association organized in 1902 to improve the business climate for retailers in North Carolina. Over 100 years later, NCRMA remains the voice of the retail industry for North Carolina. NCRMA represents the interests of individual merchants before the General Assembly and serves as a vital link to state government. Its credibility lies in its longevity and commitment to serving the ever-changing needs of its members. The Association’s membership includes more than 25,000 stores from across the state whose business represents 75 percent of North Carolina’s retail sales volume.  NCRMA serves both large and small retailers from multi-state chains to local “mom and pops,” and all types of merchants including antique, apparel, art, automotive, book, carpet, department, drug, electronics, floral, furniture, grocery, hardware, jewelry, paint and variety stores. For more information, visit

Think You Know Retail? Think Again. This is Retail North Carolina.