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So far Bronte Johnson has created 8 blog entries.

Coke Consolidated Stays Plugged In Esports

2023-09-18T11:12:25-04:00September 18, 2023|Company News|

Carolina Esports Hub announced a multi-year agreement with Coca-Cola Consolidated to become an Official Partner of its Charlotte Phoenix professional esports team and Stay Plugged In (SPIN), the premier recruiting platform for esports scholarships.

Over the past year, hundreds of students have accepted offers to play varsity college esports through the Stay Plugged In platform. The students received nearly $10 million in scholarship support with 40 best high school esports competitors in Rocket League and VALORANT to make up the inaugural 2023 Stay Plugged In All-Stars team.

“With the backing of a great partner like Coca-Cola Consolidated, the Stay Plugged In Coca-Cola All-Stars campaign will raise awareness of opportunities for high school students in esports,” said Scott Hollingsworth, Chief Operating Officer, Stay Plugged In.

All-Stars will be chosen by a Selection Committee consisting of leading industry figures and representatives of Coca-Cola Consolidated. The Committee is looking for the next college player – selection will focus on in-game technical skills, performance in competitions, evaluation of submitted gameplay clips, as well as intangible traits like teamwork and sportsmanship.

“Coca-Cola Consolidated is proud to join Stay Plugged In in recognizing gaming’s growing role in collegiate sports. We want to see gamers succeed in competition and life and look forward to having the spotlight shine on them” said Dan Holmes, SVP of Commercialization and Brand Marketing with Charlotte-based Coca-Cola Consolidated.


All-Star Weekend takes place December 14 – 16 where All-Stars will meet college recruiters and show off their skills in combine-like challenges and cap the weekend off with the official All-Star tournament.

The tournament features $20,000 in prizing available with a format that sees that every player receive a minimum of $250.

“The All-Stars campaign serves as a testament to the growing opportunities in college esports”, said Sergio Brack, Director of Esports at University of Maryland. “By bridging the gap between high school and collegiate esports, this campaign introduces an unprecedented opportunity for students to showcase their talents and potential.”

Students can nominate themselves or receive nominations from their peers until November 1st, 2023.

Learn more about the competition here.

Coke Consolidated Revives Charlottesville Ghost Mural

2023-09-19T14:19:24-04:00September 18, 2023|Community Engagement|

Charlottesville Ghost Sign Mural

Recently, the city of Charlottesville, Va., celebrated the unveiling of a Coca-Cola Ghost Sign Mural. Coke Consolidated Teammates, Friends of Cville Downtown, and community members came together to commemorate the restoration of a 100-year-old mural on the Charlottesville Downtown Mall.  

Prior to the revamp, the Coca-Cola ghost sign was faded, vintage and was disappearing rapidly. The old advertisement had begun fading away, its colors dull, becoming almost ghost-like and washed out.  

The first Coca-Cola wall mural was painted on the side of a drug store in Cartersville, GA in 1894. A Coca-Cola syrup salesman saw the potential of the exterior wall – its length and adjacency to the busy bus depot made it the ideal location for a billboard. The concept caught on and as many as 16,000 wall murals were painted by The Coca-Cola Company and its local bottlers, like Coca-Cola Consolidated. Murals waned in popularity in the 1970s, but in recent years, artists have restored and repainted vintage Coca-Cola murals, giving these “ghost signs” a second life. 

Scott Allred Painting Coca-Cola Ghost Sign

Scott Allred, an artist with Brushcan Custom Murals and Design from Asheville, North Carolina, repainted the mural utilizing a special technique maintaining the vintage character of the sign while enhancing visibility. Over the course of two weeks, the sign was repainted and restored to a better version of itself. 

This project not only revived the sign but also helped create a sense of unity and pride among the community members of Charlottesville. 

“As a local Coca-Cola bottler, Coca- Cola Consolidated is committed to supporting the communities in which we live and work,” said Wayne Tyree, Coke Consolidated’s Community Relations Manager for the Charlottesville-area “Restoring this mural is a nod to Charlottesville and Coca-Cola’s past but also represents a shared vision for a vibrant downtown for our customers and consumers.” 

Learn more about Coke Consolidated community engagement efforts here.  

Coke Consolidated Recaps 2023 S.O.A.R. Scholars Program

2023-09-08T10:26:18-04:00September 5, 2023|Company News|

2023 S.O.A.R. Scholars Video

This summer, Coca-Cola Consolidated welcomed 10 scholars from 6 Historically Black Colleges and Universities into its highly touted HBCU S.O.A.R.(Scholarship, Opportunity, Advancement, Recruitment) Scholars Program. Led by S.O.A.R. Scholar program managers, Allie Butler and Valerie Williams, these scholars had the opportunity to learn from industry professionals, gain hands-on experience and develop their professional skills at Coke Consolidated’s headquarters in Charlotte, NC.

The Class of 2023 S.O.A.R. Scholars

Throughout the one-week program, scholars were exposed to various departments, while gaining a comprehensive understanding of our operations. The scholars were encouraged to push themselves and strengthen their networking, leadership, and professional skills by engaging in intensive interview discussions.

S.O.A.R. Scholars Engaging in Intensive Interview Sessions

One highlight of the S.O.A.R. program was the opportunity for scholars to practice their networking and interviewing skills. Each scholar was coached on how to professionally conduct and partake in the interview process. Scholars learned lessons on preparedness, punctuation and the importance of making a good impression.

2023 S.O.A.R. Scholar Antonio Arrington Jr.

At the end of the week, the S.O.A.R. scholars concluded the program by participating in a case study presentation, where they touched on topics learned throughout the program, their experiences, as well as shared data collected and their own professional recommendations on how to better Coca-Cola Consolidated’s business. Each participant was awarded a $1,000 scholarship to be utilized in their academic studies, and acknowledgement of program completion.

Learn more about the S.O.A.R. program here.

Coke Consolidated Celebrates Top Women in Grocery

2023-09-11T15:35:02-04:00August 31, 2023|Company News|

Chelsea de Leon, VP of Customer Managementand Morgan Hamel, Director of Customer Development, Target &eCommerce, were recently added to the distinguished Top Women in Grocery Honoree list for their perseverance, hard work, commitment to excellence, and their personal imperative to give back to co-workers, colleagues, and members of the wider community.

Chelsea received recognition in the ‘Senior-Level Executive’ category, and Morgan in the ‘Rising Stars’. Each are among the 17 Consolidated women who’ve been recognized by Progressive Grocer since 2017. For both leaders, this recognition reinforces the support the Company seeks to provide to its customers.

“The retail landscape has changed drastically over the last few years and the Customer Management team has remained focused on creating value added solutions with our customers that are recognized across the Coca-Cola System,” shared Chelsea. Morgan describes, “It’s an incredible honor and truly humbling to receive this recognition. It represents the accomplishments of the teammates I get to work with across the entire company to support our customers.”

The TWIG award supports a movement of empowered women who, through their dedication and willingness to transcend barriers, are helping to make the grocery industry more inclusive and equitable. Chelsea, a 13-year Consolidated Servant Leader, has sought to empower the Customer Management team to become thought leaders with customers, across the Company and the Coca-Cola system. Hamel, a 4-year Consolidated Servant Leader, has sought to encourage, advocate, and develop other talented women that she gets to work with.

Congratulations to Chelsea and Morgan on receiving this special recognition, but most importantly, for living Our Purpose every day.

Chelsea and Morgan’s Top Women in Grocery nominations can be found here.

Coke Consolidated Gears Up for Back to School

2023-09-11T15:37:29-04:00August 24, 2023|Community Engagement|

Teammate Backpacking Event in Richmond, VA

As summer starts to wind down and the scent of freshly sharpened pencils fills the air, it can only mean one thing: back-to-school season is upon us. For many students and families, this time of year can bring both excitement and anxiety. The promise of new beginnings and fresh opportunities can mingle with the stress of preparing for the upcoming school year.  

Coca-Cola Consolidated is committed to supporting students, teachers, and staff across our 14-state territory. We teamed up with our customer and marketing partners as well as non-profits to provide nearly 13,000 backpacks and teacher totes during the 2023 back-to-school season.  

Teammate Backpacking Event in Louisville, KY 

“We feel it’s important for our schools to be healthy and its an important piece of our business to invest in our local communities,” said Dave Katz, Coca-Cola Consolidated President and Chief Operating Officer.  

In addition to providing practical support, our teammates are also deeply invested in the communities where they live and work. Organizational Capability Manager Justice Morton is a former educator who now takes advantage of stewardship opportunities to stay connected to her former school.  

After leaving the classroom I taught in for five years, I quickly felt disconnected from my school community, said Morton. Coke Consolidated encourages me to stay connected to my former school through stewardship opportunities. I am proud to work for a company that values education and supports teachers, school staff, and students! 

These somewhat simple acts of kindness can boost a student’s self-esteem, motivating them to excel, and helping them develop a positive attitude towards learning.

Coke Consolidated Donates $1M to Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis

2023-08-16T23:22:02-04:00August 16, 2023|Company News|

Coca-Cola Consolidated’s One Million Dollar Check to BGCM

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis (BGCM) today announced that Coca-Cola Consolidated is contributing $1 million to support job readiness programs through the Juice Plus+ Technical Training Center for students ages 16-24.

“This gift will help advance our mission to enable all young people to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens,” said Keith Blanchard, President and Chief Executive Officer of Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis. “Coca-Cola Consolidated is providing life enhancing programs for our members to learn skills for success.”

Coca-Cola Consolidated is the nation’s Coca-Cola largest bottler and has served the region since 2017. Coca-Cola has also been designated the city’s Official Soft Drink. The company employs more than 475 teammates and serves more than 4,000 customers in Memphis.

“Our purpose to serve others includes meeting the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of the communities we serve,” said Frank Harrison, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Coca-Cola Consolidated. “We’re grateful for our partnerships with the Boys & Girls Club and Mayor Jim Strickland to make this critical job readiness program possible.”

Mayor Strickland joined BGCM and Coke Consolidated at today’s announcement. The city and Memphis Shelby County Schools have collaborated with BGCM to open new clubs inside 10 schools since 2021.

“This partnership is a best-in-class example of how the private sector can support local non-profits,” said Mayor Jim Strickland “This program will not only provide safe alternatives for Memphis youth, but provide them with job readiness skills to enter the workforce.”

In addition to the donation, Consolidated teammates distributed 300 backpacks filled with school supplies and personal hygiene items to Club members to help prepare for back to school.

“We’re committed to investing in the city’s youth through mentoring, character development and job readiness programs like this,” said Keith Burnette, Market Unit Vice President in Tennessee for Coke Consolidated.


Coke Consolidated Shares Summer Internship Experience

2023-07-27T10:19:47-04:00July 27, 2023|Company News|

The Class of 2023 Applied Learning Interns

This summer, Coca-Cola Consolidated welcomed 31 interns from 20 schools across the U.S. into its highly touted Applied Learning Internship Program. Led by the company’s talent development managers, Molly Lynch and Skipper McInerny, these interns had the unique opportunity to gain practical experience and develop their professional skills at the Coke Consolidated headquarters in Charlotte, NC.

Throughout the program, interns were assigned to various departments within the company, allowing them to explore different areas of the business and gain a comprehensive understanding of its operations. But what truly set this internship program apart was the weekly Cohort Connects. Every Friday, the interns would come together to engage in a series of activities designed to foster camaraderie, personal growth, and a deeper connection with the company.

One highlight of the Cohort Connects was the opportunity to volunteer at Samaritan’s Feet—an organization dedicated to providing shoes and support to those in need. Through this experience, the interns not only gave back to the community but also got to see Consolidated’s Purpose in action.



Applied Learning Interns Volunteer at Samaritans Feet


“I have a passion for volunteering, so it was wonderful to have the opportunity to volunteer at Samaritan’s Feet alongside my cohort,” said Lauren Kimball, Cybersecurity Intern. “Together, we successfully processed over 8,000 shoes. It is incredibly heartening to see the company I work for truly values making a positive difference beyond its own walls.”

Another memorable Cohort Connect activity was a special tour of Bank of America stadium, where interns got an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the operations of a world-class sports facility. This visit provided insights into the business aspects of the sports industry, demonstrated the partnership between the stadium and Consolidated, and highlighted the importance of collaboration, teamwork, and strategic planning.

Applied Learning Interns Visit Bank of America Stadium

“My favorite experience throughout the internship was the Bank of America stadium tour,” said Branson Walters, Equipment Services Intern. “Despite being from Charlotte and having visited the stadium numerous times, I had never had such an immersive experience. It was truly fascinating to witness the behind-the-scenes aspects and gain insights into how Coca-Cola Consolidated is connected with the stadium.” 

In addition to these external activities, the Cohort Connects also featured sessions with senior leaders from Coca-Cola Consolidated. These leaders shared their experiences, insights, and valuable advice, inspiring the interns and providing them with invaluable guidance for their future careers. The interns had the chance to ask questions, engage in meaningful discussions, and learn from the wealth of knowledge and expertise these leaders brought to the table.

“The weekly intern Cohorts Connects, along with the insightful speakers, have played a significant role in my professional development,” said Connor Burns, Business Intelligence Reporting Intern. “Many of the speakers left a lasting impact on me. What stands out is that numerous individuals took unconventional paths to reach their current positions, which has taught me the valuable lesson that there are multiple routes to achieve success in life.”

Coca-Cola Consolidated’s commitment to nurturing the next generation of diverse servant leaders through programs like the Applied Learning Internship Program exemplifies its dedication to building a bright future.

“Throughout the internship, I experienced remarkable personal and professional growth,” said Harpreet Gujral, Data Management Intern. “The Applied Learning Internship lives up to its name in every sense. It provides ample learning opportunities and allows me to apply that newfound knowledge to real-world projects.”

Coca-Cola Consolidated’s Applied Learning Internship Program has not only provided these young professionals with a platform to develop their skills but has also empowered them to embrace their potential. As they embark on their respective career paths, the interns will forever carry the lessons, connections, and memories from this transformative summer—a summer that propelled them into a future of limitless possibilities.




This article was written by Ava Milholin. She is part of the 2023 Coca-Cola Consolidated Applied Learning Internship, supporting the Corporate Communications department. She currently attends North Carolina State University, where she is completing her Bachelors of Science undergraduate studies in Business Administration – Marketing.




Coke Consolidated Partners with Charlotte FC to Express Gratitude to Our Military Members

2023-07-10T10:37:41-04:00July 10, 2023|Community Engagement|

The Military Cup Tournament, hosted by Charlotte FC and Coca-Cola Consolidated, took place on Saturday, July 8, honoring some of our esteemed military heroes. The event brought together members from three branches of the military for a day of camaraderie and friendly competition.

Before the games began, everyone was invited to participate in giveaways, games, as well as photo opportunities with varying teams, allowing families to capture memories with players. Attendees were treated to boxed lunches provided by Harris Teeter.

As the competition took place, the event fostered a sense of community and togetherness. Families were able to enjoy time together, bonding over shared experiences and stories, with many spouses and partners of players lining the edges of the soccer field, along with their children, cheering them on.

Chiquita Griswell, an Army veteran and Coca-Cola Consolidated teammate, spoke about her experience volunteering at the tournament, as well as what the event means to her. “Today was awesome. I made a lot of connections and was able to be out in the community serving people and serving others.”

The Military Cup Tournament served as a heartfelt tribute to the brave men and women who serve our nation, reminding us of their sacrifices and the importance of their service.

Dustin Swinehart, Director of Community Engagement for Charlotte FC, expressed the importance of the Military Cup Tournament and why this tradition continues, Military support is one of our club’s key community pillars, and we are thrilled to invite these families to enjoy the tournament and the match so that we can express the depth of our gratitude for their service to our community and to our country.

As the day ended, all participants attended Charlotte FC’s military appreciation match against FC Cincinnati. The winning team was invited down to the field to be recognized during the half-time field presentation at Bank of America Stadium.

The Military Cup Tournament is hosted annually and continues to be a remarkable celebration of our military members and their service.

Learn more about our military appreciation efforts here

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