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Dollar General making its way to the Golden State

BY Allison Cerra

GOODLETTSVILLE, Tenn. — Dollar General announced its plans to expand its operations to California in 2012.

The California announcement comes on the heels of the company’s planned expansions into three new states in 2011 — Connecticut, Nevada and New Hampshire. California would be Dollar General’s 39th state.

The company said it plans to serve shoppers in rural, suburban and metropolitan markets.

“Our California stores will mark a significant milestone for Dollar General, giving us a coast-to-coast presence for the first time,” said Rick Dreiling, Dollar General chairman and CEO. “Our team is excited about carrying our mission westward and delivering value and convenience, our hallmarks for over 70 years, to new customers.”

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Former Walmart executive joins SoloHealth

BY Allison Cerra

ATLANTA — Former Walmart executive Charles Leehan has taken on a new role at a self-service kiosks provider.

Leehan will serve as director of national accounts for SoloHealth, reporting to Rick Voight, the company’s VP channel development. In this capacity, he will oversee and manage relationships across national accounts to ensure SoloHealth’s partners receive the best possible service and individualized attention from the SoloHealth team.

Leehan’s career at Walmart spanned more than 18 years, mostly within the retailer’s health-and-wellness division. He was a part of the development and expansion of Walmart Vision Centers, which has grown from 40 to more than 2,500 locations, three regional processing labs and one central distribution center.

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Stop & Shop moves to head of class with A+ School Rewards program

BY Allison Cerra

FAIRFIELD, Conn., and QUINCY, Mass. — Stop & Shop will distribute $1 million to local schools in the Northeast as part of its A+ School Rewards program.

From Oct. 8, 2010, to March 24, 2011, the program, now in its second year, allowed customers to designate the points they earned for every dollar spent at Stop & Shop to the school or schools of their choice by registering their Stop & Shop card at StopAndShop.com, the retailer said. Participating schools also had the opportunity to secure additional cash rewards ranging from $100 to $1,000 through principal challenges and writing and art contests.

"We are proud to support educational initiatives and know that this year’s participating schools will be able to use these monies to enhance their students’ learning experience," said Arlene Putterman, manager of public and community relations for Stop & Shop New York Metro division.

Added Suzi Robinson, manager of public and community relations for Stop & Shop New England division, "Now more than ever, schools need our support, and the A+ School Rewards program is an easy way for customers to support their local schools every time they shop."

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