The idea of a baker’s supply cooperative came from Frances E. Quigley. After serving in World War II, Fran became a bakery supply salesman in Neenah, Wis. The end of price controls had led to dramatic price rises for ingredients and supplies. The small bakers Fran served were reluctant to pass those increases on to customers. They needed a way to lower their costs. Quigley suggested they combine their purchasing power in a cooperative. This would also allow them to reduce time and expense spent on ordering, storing and delivery. To Fran’s small bakery customers, the idea made sense.
With Fran leading the way, Valley Cooperative Association was born. The idea took off and the co-op began a steady climb. VCA has been offering a cost-effective method for members to buy supplies and stay competitive ever since. Quigley attributed the co-op’s success to those he worked with:
“I must admit to a feeling of amazement and gratification at the growth and success of VCA. There are many, many people who have been responsible for making this all happen… [VBCA] has a staff of well-qualified, dedicated people in all departments, who are making contributions to VBCA’s continuing success.”
VCA membership has grown impressively over the years. Members include retail and wholesale bakeries, supermarket bakeries, donut shops, pizza restaurants, candy makers, institutional food service companies and others.
Frances E. Quigley – In 2003, Fran passed away in Mesa, Ariz. He was 87 years old. He was born in Iowa in 1915; he served in the U.S. Army in Germany during World War II. His vision and tireless energy transformed VCA from a fledgling idea into an influential force in the baking industry in Wisconsin — and beyond.
Charles T. Worthington – Chuck served as our Chief Operating Officer for nearly two decades until his unexpected death in 2001. With wife Judy by his side, Chuck was the heart and soul of VCA. His contributions included expanding our product offering, adding cold storage, and launching Bakers Supply and Progressive Warehousing. His innovation and leadership was central to making VBCA what it is today.
Mark Munroe – Mark is currently the President and CEO of Valley and has been since 2001. Mark is a great visionary and has taken Valley to new heights and has developed the Valley Family of Companies to be an industry leader in their respective categories.