Wegmans Food Markets today announced the local leadership team managing its Montvale store, which opens Sunday, Sept. 24 at West Grand Avenue and Mercedes Drive. This group consists of the store manager, executive chef, pharmacy area manager, and three area managers who each supervise several departments. Altogether, they bring 89 years of experience working for the family-owned company. Hiring and training are ongoing, and those who are interested should apply online at wegmans.com/careers.
The Wegmans Montvale leadership team is as follows:
Store Manager Paul Jordan
When Paul Jordan talks with new employees about working at Wegmans, he tells them, “this is the only job I’ve ever had.” That’s because he began working for Wegmans in upstate New York as a part-time Helping Hand (parking lot attendant) in 1989 while he was still in high school. He went to college with tuition assistance from the Wegmans Employee Scholarship Program and graduated from John Carroll University, staying on with Wegmans afterward as a night manager and then relocating to New Jersey as a produce management trainee. From there he rose through the ranks as a produce manager, service area manager, and perishable area manager before a promotion to store manager in 2014 at Wegmans’ Princeton location. Today, Jordan prepares to open the company’s 94th store and lead a team of 500 employees in Montvale.
Executive Chef David Lopatynski
David Lopatynski grew up in Oradell – just seven miles away from the Montvale store – and he attended college at the State University of New York at Buffalo, where he majored in communication studies. While there, he began cooking in a Japanese restaurant. He enjoyed it, but didn’t view cooking as a career for himself right away. After graduation, he took a marketing job but found himself drawn back to the kitchen. He finally made the jump into the restaurant scene and honed his skills, working his way up through some of the top gastropubs of Rockland County, N.Y. He joined Wegmans in 2015 as a sous chef at the Ocean store and was named Executive Chef at Woodbridge shortly afterward. Returning to his roots in the Montvale area, he will oversee the culinary team of more than 100 that provides Wegmans’ restaurant-quality prepared foods, with mix and match self-serve food bars, artisan pizza, subs, hot soup, fresh sushi, The Burger Bar, and more - all for in-store dining or takeout.
Pharmacy Area Manager Maria Lockwood
A graduate of the Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in New York, Maria Lockwood joined Wegmans in 1993 as a pharmacy intern. From there she grew her career as a pharmacist, pharmacy operations manager, and pharmacy manager. Lockwood is a licensed pharmacist in five states and now in Montvale, she will lead the pharmacy and its staff, helping Wegmans employees and customers live healthier, better lives. Wegmans pharmacy services include immunizations, auto-refill of prescriptions, free home shipping, pet medications, competitively low prices on select generic prescriptions, and free text alerts.
Perishable Area Manager Chrissy Kreber
Chrissy Kreber is a graduate of the State University of New York at Oswego and began working at Wegmans in 2003 as a part-time cashier. She brings prior experience in a variety of positions, including cheese shop, front end manager, employee representative, café manager, service area manager, and merchandising area manager. As perishable area manager in Montvale, Kreber will oversee the produce, floral, bakery, seafood, meat, cheese, and deli departments, ensuring Wegmans’ high standards for the freshest ingredients are met and employees are prepared to share in-depth food knowledge with Wegmans customers.
Merchandising Area Manager John Pastorella
John Pastorella became a Wegmans employee in 2007 when he began working part time as a cashier and Helping Hand. He went on to work in the deli and in seafood before learning through various full-time roles as a management trainee, seafood manager, employee representative, and overnight operations manager. In his current role as merchandising manager, he’ll supervise several departments, including grocery, dairy, frozen foods, Nature’s Marketplace and home and entertaining. Pastorella will work collaboratively across the store to ensure that the thousands of products that Wegmans offers are well displayed and well stocked.
Service Area Manager Emily Reynolds
Emily Reynolds has been a Wegmans employee since 2006. A graduate of the State University of New York at Oneonta, she started with Wegmans as a part-time cashier before taking on roles in produce and bakery, a store operations internship, as management trainee in the Cheese Shop and produce, bakery manager, and employee representative. At Montvale, she will lead the front end, service desk, maintenance, Helping Hands and accounting office. Reynolds’ priority is to ensure that incredible customer service is delivered every day. She will also oversee local community giving, carrying out Wegmans’ commitment to make a difference in every community it serves.
Wegmans Montvale is a 108,000 sq. ft. supermarket, plus 14,000 sq. ft. leased to a third-party owner for a wine, beer, and spirits shop. The store includes a Market Café with indoor and outdoor seating for nearly 250, as well as The Burger Bar, an in-store restaurant counter that serves delicious burgers, fresh salads, flavorful sandwiches, specialty milkshakes, soup and sides. Visit wegmans.com/montvale for store information, including Wegmans Shoppers Club sign up and driving directions.