Meet Our Employees

At C&S, our employees are the key to our success. Each of them has a unique role in the company. Here are some of their stories:

Rahul Kalke

Senior Corporate Counsel

What is C&S?
C&S is best known as a grocery wholesale company but really it is so much more.  As a procurement company, it is a powerful buyer of products and resources. C&S is also an intricately networked warehousing and distribution company, expert in logistics and supply chain issues.  C&S is also a technology company, constantly seeking to streamline and improve.  It is an employer of thousands, and widely recognized for supporting communities in which it operates.  It is a key business partner with its manufacturers, vendors and its retail customers. And it is an industry leader and innovator.  Given the breadth and scope of C&S operations, in my role as corporate counsel, there have been many opportunities to get involved with the various business units of C&S and simultaneously gain valuable experience in several areas. 

On career growth opportunities at C&S
At C&S, I have had the opportunity to work on a number of significant projects, helping to maintain and grow our business through new or extended supply arrangements with our retail customers; working to preserve business impacted by financial hardship through deal re-structurings; addressing issues related to union pensions; working on intellectual property matters; supporting our procurement department with vendor-related matters; managing commercial litigation issues and supporting our business units on day-to-day matters. Through my work I have been able to gain ever more knowledge about C&S’s business units and contribute to the continuous improvement of our operations and our customers’ experiences.

Most useful employee benefits
My family uses the health insurance, vision (I have recently learned I have officially reached that point when I need to obtain reading glasses!) and dental care benefits.  We are also fortunate to be able to participate in C&S’s 401(k) plan through my regular contributions and the matching program, which allows my family the opportunity to maximize our retirement savings.

On the C&S corporate culture
I would describe the culture here as very demanding, due to the requirements of our customers and vendors, which flow right through to our own needs.  There is much to learn as quickly as possible, and many challenges to overcome, given the constantly changing landscape.  The people I’ve met at C&S are determined, dedicated and responsive, and also willingly helpful and well-rounded (many of my colleagues pursue personal activities and endeavors such as participating in or coaching sports, teaching classes and volunteering in the community).  The atmosphere is rigorous, energetic and dynamic.  The environment is fast paced, meetings are focused and expectations are high.  To use a sports analogy, I have found that at C&S the ball will be passed to you and you will get to shoot it.  When you look back at what you have been able to contribute to the company’s accomplishments, and the challenges that have been overcome, you will be amazed and that is rewarding. 

Social responsibility and C&S
I am proud to be associated with a company that is so dedicated to community involvement.  I am constantly amazed at the large number of events within my local community that C&S has sponsored or supported in some fashion.  These include everything from a small bike rodeo for kids to a major fundraising event to support medical research.

Ron Wright

Senior Director, Corporate Facilities Maintenance

On working for a company that nobody knows
C&S is a huge company, with 22 locations and over 17,000 employees--and yet very few people outside the grocery industry know about us. I enjoy explaining what we do to people who are new to the food industry or the company.

On the culture of opportunity
C&S has a culture of opportunity that allows for rapid learning, advancement, and professional experience. There are low barriers for entry between departments and projects, so it’s easy to get involved and participate in projects and activities that help you grow and advance. If you have the desire and ability to assist with a challenge, the C&S culture encourages involvement.  Because of this, I’ve been able to advance inside and outside of my department quickly by improving processes, identifying and fixing problem areas, and enabling individuals to take ownership of their daily tasks through coaching exercises. 

The corporate culture at C&S is demanding, but rewarding. And the C&S senior management team is quick to recognize extra effort.

My favorite thing about C&S
For me, one of the greatest benefits of working at C&S is being part of a company that cares, and goes the extra mile to help the community.  C&S is always looking to lend a hand to local charities and nonprofit organizations, and is one of the first to respond when disaster strikes, whether it’s here in the U.S. or abroad. When Katrina hit New Orleans, we had trucks loaded with ice and bottled water on the road within hours.

I always make a point to partake in the yearly United Way campaign, local environmental clean up events, and disaster assistance programs.  C&S often matches employee donations dollar for dollar

The most rewarding part of my job
The most rewarding aspect of my job is the variety. Everyday I go to work expecting to do certain activities and more often than not, I end up getting involved with a lot more.  I have never once been bored during my career here, and I’m constantly pushed to new levels.

I also enjoy working with the people here. We have people who have been here many years (sometimes decades) and newer employees who bring the best practices from their own experience.  It’s a great mix.