Grocery Industry Icons & Innovators
VP, Own Brands, Innovation, Regulatory and Product Management
Nancy Cota is the Vice President of Own Brands Innovation, Product Development and Regulatory Affairs for Albertsons Companies. She has 47 years’ experience in the Supermarket industry including Corporate Strategy, Marketing, Innovation, Retail Operations as well as Private Label Brand & Product Management. Nancy started her career as a Courtesy Clerk in Safeway Stores to work her way through college. She quickly advanced through the backstage operations where there were very few women in leadership positions. At a very young age of 36 she became the 1st Corporate Vice President of Deli Foodservice where she led the effort to reengineer their operations as well as the launch and partnership with Starbucks in their stores.
In 1999 she recognized the opportunity for private label in the Fresh Departments and led the expansion of their portfolio of brands into Deli/Foodservice, Meat, Seafood, Produce and In-Store Bakery. Within Own Brands Nancy has held a multitude of leadership roles including V.P of Innovation where their team was recognized as Innovator of the year from Store Brands Decisions. Additionally, she led the team that developed and launched many new brands from concept to launch including Open Nature, O Organics, Primo Taglio, Waterfront Bistro, Signature Café, Debi Lilly, & Value Corner to name a few.
Nancy has many Industry affiliations: she has been inducted into the Hall of Fame for both Top Women in Grocery, Hall of fame for PLMA (Private Label Manufacturers Association), as well as was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award for Top Women in Store Brands. She is currently on the Board of Directors for WISE, (Women Impacting Storebrand' Excellence), as well as the Albertson’s National Chairperson for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion representing their Women’s Inspiration & Inclusion Network Associate Resource Group.
On a personal note, Nancy is a huge advocate for Adoption (3 of her 7 children are adopted) as well as for Breast Cancer as a 10-year survivor herself. She is involved in several mentorship programs with a focus on the Advancement of Women.