When Lydia Gutierrez got in her car on Tuesday, August 31st to make the two hour drive to Grand Rapids to attend the biannual Meijer Summit, she wondered if it would make a difference if she attended or not. After all, there would be close to 2,000 Meijer employees in attendance, including the family owners of Meijer, Doug, Mark and Hank. But, Hacienda’s buyer, Kaitlyn McGahan had specifically called to make sure Lydia would be there as a valued vendor of the giant food and home goods merchant.
As the day-long Summit program moved toward its conclusion in the afternoon, Lydia was inspired by the messages delivered by company leaders and department heads about the impact they can make in the communities they serve. And then came the moment that Lydia did not see coming when the name of Hacienda Mexican Foods was announced from the stage as the winner of the Meijer Vendor of the Year!
Fighting back tears of joy and utter surprise, Lydia gratefully accepted the award on behalf of Hacienda. She is always the first person to give the credit to those around her, to her team at Hacienda and to her community.
“Our employees come from our Southwest Detroit community. They come to work every day with their game on. I am so proud of each of them and am thankful to be at the helm of this humble but strong company. Thankful, too, for our Southwest Detroit community. We could not do this without you!”