In Remembrance: Earl Holton
May 14, 2024

Earl Holton, former long-time Meijer President, passed away peacefully Friday. Holton began working for Meijer soon after graduating high school in 1952 as a store clerk, served as President from 1980-1999, and remained a trusted advisor through this year.

“The entire Meijer family is saddened by the loss of Earl, who played a key role in the growth and development of Meijer and was a trusted confidant of my father during a pivotal period in our company’s history,” Executive Chairman Hank Meijer said. “The impact Earl made on Meijer was only exceeded by the impact he made on this community, which he loved dearly and supported through numerous philanthropic initiatives. Our thoughts and prayers are with Earl’s family during this difficult time.”

Holton started his career at Meijer as a store clerk in Cedar Springs, Mich., before becoming a Store and then District Manager. In 1961, he became the first Thrifty Acres Operations Manager and was then named Vice President of Operations in 1966. Holton continued earning additional responsibility as a Senior and then Executive Vice President before being named President in June 1980.

“Without Earl’s leadership, Meijer would not be the company it is today,” Meijer President & CEO Rick Keyes said. “His impact on our business can still be seen, and his impact on our culture will last even longer. He was never satisfied with just meeting customers’ needs, he always wanted to exceed them. Earl’s counsel has been truly invaluable to me, but I will miss our friendship the most.”

The entire Meijer organization is forever grateful for the contributions Earl made to the company and the Grand Rapids community.