Picture of Nicholas A. DiRenzo

Nicholas A. DiRenzo

Class of 2015

Acclaimed for his honesty, business acumen and listening ability by his colleagues, Nick says he entered the industry because “you have the ability to make people feel good when you sell candy.”

He remains in the business because, as he explains: “There’s always something new on the horizon: new items, new programs, new deals. I love the look on people’s faces when they find out I sell candy.”

Born in Norristown, PA, on June 5, 1958, to Lena and Nicholas, Nick grew up with brothers Frank, Robert and John and sister Debbie. He graduated from Norristown Area High School in 1976.

In 1977, he enrolled in Montgomery County Community College to study business management, but left the following year to help his family open a supermarket.

Nick joined DiRenzo Foods Inc. as director of purchasing, a job he held until 1985, when he was tagged as company president.

DiRenzo Foods was sold in 1989, and Nick joined Genuardi Family Markets as an assistant store manager, working his way up to director of deli/bakery/foodservice.

In 2001, Nick accepted the position as director of food services with Klein Wholesale Distributors, but the following year his career took him to convenience store distributor Cooper-Booth Wholesale Co. as vice-president of purchasing and marketing.

In 2008, he joined Thayer Distribution, Inc. as director of sales and marketing, the position he holds at the time of his induction. He is responsible for candy and snack sales and marketing in the convenience and vending channels.

A graduate of the Dale Carnegie program, Nick attributes his success in the industry to being able to adapt to ever-changing market conditions and ensuring his team understands the importance of working in a profitable, ethical manner.

He is an ardent advocate for those entering the industry to participate in its associations and events, saying: “The people you’ll meet are filled with knowledge you’ll never find in a book or college course.”

He practices what he preaches: Nick is a member of the Convenience Distribution Association (formerly American Wholesale Marketers Association), the Maryland/DC Vending Association and the Tri-State Vending Association, of which he served on the board of directors.

Nick married Mary McDonald on October 6, 1979. They have two daughters, Danielle Short and Gina DiRenzo, and twin four-year-old granddaughters, Lena and Sophia.

In his free time he enjoys gardening, cooking, making wine and Italian sausage and spending time with family and friends.