Meat Department associate holding Mr. George Gold Coin award in front of Meat department

Meat manager Ken Edney from Store #172 in Naples, Florida, is the latest Publix associate to be recognized with a Mr. George Gold Coin Award for going above and beyond. We pride ourselves on providing customers with premier service every day, and associates who exceed their job expectations can be honored with a Gold Coin Award.

Mr. George first introduced this program in 1955 when he presented associates with a 25th anniversary coin. One of the biggest changes to the program was when the coin was switched from silver to gold to emphasize the importance and honor associates feel when presented with the award. Check out a recap on the history behind our Mr. George Gold Coin Award and take a look at some of the past Gold Coin Award stories. Not only do award recipients receive the Gold Coin, they also get a message from our CEO and a Publix gift card.

The Story

Publix customer Julie went to Publix to pick up food for her husband, who was a patient in the local hospital. While walking through the meat department, associate Ken approached Julie and asked her how her day was going. She let him know that, unfortunately, her day was lousy. “I asked her what was wrong, and she told me that her husband was in the hospital for an operation to remove a cancerous tumor from his lung,” Ken shared with us. “Immediately, I felt awful for what she and her family were going through. I knew I had to help in any way I could.”

Ken told Julie, “Let me help you,” and walked her to the bakery, where she was getting a donut for her husband. He also helped her get the soda that her husband requested. After Ken helped her find those items, he brought Julie to a bench so she could sit down and rest while he helped finish her shopping. “It was unbelievable,” Julie recalled. “He went to the deli to get the fried chicken I ordered and was so helpful.”

When Ken returned with the rest of Julie’s groceries, she took out her credit card to finish paying for everything. Ken told her, “No, put that away. It’s been taken care of.” Ken paid for all of Julie’s groceries and finished her trip by helping her to her car with her groceries. Julie ended her story by saying: “Ken is the nicest person, and his generosity and kindness meant everything to me during this difficult time. Publix is our favorite and it’s because of the wonderful associates like him.” Ken’s kindness and willingness to go above and beyond for Julie is why he was awarded the Mr. George Gold Coin Award.

Have you ever witnessed an associate going above and beyond at your local Publix? Share your story with us on Facebook or Twitter, via our Contact Us page or by phone at (800) 242-1227. To read the stories of other recipients of the Mr. George Gold Coin Award, check them out here.


Matthew L.

Written by

Matthew started with Publix in 2009. After working his way up to a Publix Manager, Matthew decided to make a change from retail and pursue his passion for writing. Matthew enjoys hearing stories from the people he's writing about and loves the Publix culture. Outside of work, Matthew enjoys spending time with his wife, son and their dog. They love to explore all that Central Florida has to offer.

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