June 22, 2015
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William Beech throws the first pitch at the June 10 Blue Wahoos game.​

Winn-Dixie No. 507 Director William Beech, who just celebrated his 45-year anniversary with Winn-Dixie, got to top off the celebration by throwing a minor league baseball game first pitch in front of friends, familyand local fans.

The words “hardworking,” “dedicated” and “fair” describe many associates at Winn-Dixie, but they epitomize Beech. When Beech started with the Pensacola district of Winn-Dixie in 1970, he was a young man bagging groceries. Throughout the last four decades, there’s not much Beech hasn’t seen.

”I’ve watched Winn-Dixie grow and evolve over the past 45 years,“ he said. “Many of the store directors in this district got their start working on my team. I’ve seen associates grow up from teenagers to adults with their own children who now work for me.”

Beech has been at store No. 507 for 25 years and takes great pride in his work. Throughout his tenure, he has won many district and region-wide sales competitions, including four President’s Club awards. He is very involved in the community and has assisted many schools and churches throughout the years with back-to-school programs and other charitable campaigns. Because of his love for the Pensacola area, the Blue Wahoos, Pensacola's minor league baseball team, invited him to celebrate his 45-year milestone by throwing out the first pitch at the team’s June 10 game.

"William is a dedicated associate and a leader inside and outside store walls," said David Logan, Pensacola district director. "However, more importantly, William is a great person and a mentor who leads his team with respect, and as a result, is highly regarded by customers and associates alike. I am proud to have him on my team."

Beech credits his longevity with the company to keeping up with the changing times and listening to customers and associates. “In this position, you’re not only a store director,” said Beech. “You're also a counselor. It’s important to listen to your team and your community, and help them in times of need.”

In his free time, Beech enjoys camping and fishing. However, his most valuable pastime is spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren and his wife of 41 years, Janet.

“I would not be where I am today without my wife,” he said.

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Pensacola district director David Logan presents store director William Beech with a Blue Wahoos jersey to honor his 45-year anniversary with Winn-Dixie.

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