Business Week keynote to feature Festival Foods Chairman of the Board

skogen-72ppi-top-story-2The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s Business Week 2015 will feature a Wisconsin businessman with a long history of success. Dave Skogen, Chairman of the Board for Festival Foods, will share his expertise in a keynote to students, business faculty and guests on Thursday, March 26.

The Skogen family’s history in the grocery business began in 1946, when Dave’s parents, Paul and Jane, acquired an IGA store in Onalaska, Wis. When Paul Skogen passed away in 1976, Dave and his wife, Barb, took over the organization. In 1990, the first Festival Foods was opened, and the family shifted the store format to address changes in consumer buying habits. Today, Dave’s son Mark, serves as CEO and President. The family operates 20 stores throughout Wisconsin and employs more than 5,000 people.

Dave Skogen has achieved a great deal of success throughout his lifetime in the grocery business. He was named “IGA Retailer of the Year’” in 1989 and Wisconsin “Grocer of the Year” in 2005. He and his wife were named “Outstanding Philanthropists” in 2007 by the Upper Mississippi Valley Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

Skogen is the author of the book, “Boomerang! Leadership Principles that Bring the Customer Back,” about the leadership influences and philosophies that brought him success in the grocery industry. In an interview upon releasing the book, Skogen said the book uncovers what he believes are the leadership intangibles: honesty, accountability, service to a higher purpose and love.

“These things apply to business, family life, parenting,” he said.

Along with his professional endeavors, Skogen is committed to community service. He previously served as President of the Onalaska Rotary, and was named a hometown hero by President Clinton in 1998. He chaired several campaigns in Onalaska, including a campaign to build a new YMCA and the John Shelton Hardwood Floor campaign at Onalaska High School. He has been honored with numerous community awards and recognition.

The keynote address is part of the 2015 Business Week events, with events led by both the Austin E. Cofrin School of Business and UWGB Career Services. Events such as the Dine Like a Professional etiquette luncheon, Job and Internship Fair, and an elevator pitch competition, are held throughout the spring semester to help students prepare for post-University opportunities and take advantage of this year’s theme “Engaging in Public Life.”

The Thursday, March 26 dinner, networking reception, and keynote will take place in the Weidner Center and is by invitation only.

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