NAME:
Tom Burkemper

CURRENT POSITION:
Sr. Director, DMM Beverages and Perishables

COMPANY:
Walgreens

TENURE WITH CURRENT COMPANY:
4 years

YEARS OF INDUSTRY EXPERIENCE:
25

GIVE US A BRIEF HISTORY OF YOUR CAREER
I started my full-time career at the age of 18, working the evening shift as a union laborer for an industrial manufacturer and during the day as a grocery bagger/stock person. This experience, combined with my family, friends, and formal education, has provided me the opportunity to earn positions of increasing responsibility leading industrial, consumer package goods, and retailer organizations across a variety of industries. Professionally, I have held roles in market research, category management, shopper insights, ecommerce, sales, trade and brand marketing, and retail merchandising. Currently, I have merchandising and P&L accountabilities for a $3 billion dollar business within a large multi-national drug retailer.

WHY ARE YOU EXCITED TO BE PART OF THE CMA?
I have been very fortunate to learn from and work with a great team of category management professionals at the CMA. I find their dedication, commitment, and passion for the customers they serve both inspiring and rewarding. I look forward to working with the CMA to elevate the customer value we deliver for the benefit of the industry and next generation of business leaders in the field.

WHAT DO YOU HOPE TO ACCOMPLISH WITH THE CMA BOARD?
My objective is to contribute to the growth and development of the CMA through thought leadership and initiatives that drive performance, solutions, and customer value for the industry and members we serve.

WHAT ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF?  Career or personal or both.
Professionally, I am most proud of the teams, partners, and business associates that I have had the privilege to work with throughout my career. Personally, I most proud of my family and friends who have contributed, brought meaning, and sacrificed so much on my behalf. I am forever grateful to have had the honor to have them in my life.

WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING THAT NEEDS TO BE ADDRESSED IN THE CATMAN DISCIPLINE GOING FORWARD AND WHY? 
The most important aspect that needs to be addressed in the CatMan discipline is its evolution for the next generation of category management leaders. Technology is impacting every aspect of our traditional ways of living. Changes in how we work, live, shop, and engage are occurring at a phenomenal rate. Our ability to bring thought leadership, create value, and activate differentiated solutions through our discipline will be critical for the future success of practitioners and our industry.