February 28, 2014
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Black Heritage Festival group oratory award winners.(photo courtesy Anniston Museum of Natural History)​

Winn-Dixie stores in Central Alabama celebrated Black History Month by participating in several local events that recognize the important people and events in the history of African-American culture.

Store No. 447 in Anniston, Ala. participated Feb. 15 in the Anniston Museum of Natural History’s 34thannual Black Heritage Festival. It featured a children’s oratory competition, a way to experience African-American heritage and culture through the spoken word and song. Children from Pre-K to 12thgrade recited works of poetry and prose by noted African American authors, with the hope of building public speaking skills, poise and confidence. Store No. 447 associate Britt Kristjanson served as one of the judges for the competition.

“I really enjoyed hearing the kids have such passion for the different works that they were reciting,” Kristjanson said. “They all did a great job.”

Winn-Dixie provided lunch for more than 60 members of the Miles College Choir, who provided live entertainment for attendees.

On Feb. 25, Winn-Dixie also participated in the Best in Minority Business Awards (BIMBAs). The annual award ceremony celebrates the spirit, creativity and resourcefulness of Birmingham’s brightest minority and female business leadership.

Winn-Dixie’s District Director for Birmingham West, Jim Rossetti spoke about the importance of diversity and inclusion at Bi-Lo Holdings.

We know that we can’t be a great company unless we take advantage of the creativity that comes from multiple perspectives, and we take pride in providing an environment that allows our associates the ability to contribute, learn, grow and be heard,” Rossetti said. “I’m pleased that here in Alabama, we hire associates from a diverse range of skills and backgrounds. That’s important to us; it is important to you – and that is why we are here,” he said.

Winn-Dixie sponsored the Community Justice Award, which recognized individuals who are leaders in advocacy, law and community groups.

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From left, Eugene Okorley, 445 store director; district director Jim Rossetti, and Regional HR generalist Britt Pietruszewski at the Best in Minority Business Awards in Birmingham.

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