Erin Sharp

Erin started her food career at a young age, working in a family-owned grocery store from age 14 through her years in college. After obtaining her sciences degree and then her MBA, Erin began her almost 40-year career in the food industry. It was with several large consumer products companies that Erin found her passion for manufacturing and supply chain but most of all for leading people.

Erin spent decades leading manufacturing operations for Frito Lay, Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream, and Sara Lee Baking Company. As her career progressed, Erin took on bigger roles but her passion for people continued to be her north star and her ability to motivate her teams to continuous improvement her biggest accomplishment. During her years at Sara Lee, Erin was introduced to the American Bakers Association and was extremely impressed with the impact that they had, not only within the baking industry, but also the food industry at large.

Her final role, one she held for the last 10 years of her career, was head of manufacturing and enterprise sourcing for The Kroger Company. Kroger operated 35 manufacturing plants across the country, many of them fresh and frozen bakeries. Erin led her team through a transformation to a culture of high performance with the development of a Continuous Improvement process that drove improvement in all areas of the business.

Part of her responsibilities in her leadership role at Kroger included leading the company’s representation within various industry associations. For 10 years Erin served on the ABA board of directors, many as Executive Committee Treasurer and ultimately as the first woman Chair of the Board. Erin also served on the National Feeding America organization’s board of directors for 8 years, having a personal mission to serve those who are food insecure.

Erin retired from her role at Kroger in 2021 but continues to serve as an Independent Board Director and Advisor to companies within the food industry. She and her wife Gloria live in Elmhurst, IL, but love to travel and explore new and favorite wine regions.