John Mackey, co-founder and co-CEO of Whole Foods Market, has led the natural and organic grocer to a $14 billion Fortune 500 company with more than 410 stores and 88,000 team members in three countries. The company has been included on Fortune magazine’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” list for 18 consecutive years and ranked first in the food and drug store industry as part of the magazine’s “Most Admired Companies” list in 2014. It was acquired by Amazon in 2017.
While devoting his career to helping shoppers satisfy their lifestyle needs with quality natural and organic foods, Mackey has also focused on conscious capitalism, with an attempt to build a more conscious business model. He was the visionary for Whole Planet Foundation to help end poverty in developing nations, the Local Producer Loan Program to help local food producers expand their businesses, the Global Animal Partnership’s rating scale for humane farm animal treatment, and the Health Starts Here initiative to promote health and wellness.
John Mackey has been recognized as one of Fortune’s “World’s 50 Greatest Leaders,” Ernst & Young’s “Entrepreneur of the Year Overall Winner for the United States,” Institutional Investor’s “Best CEO in America,” Barron’s “World’s Best CEO,” MarketWatch’s “CEO of the Year,” Fortune’s “Businessperson of the Year,” and Esquire’s “Most Inspiring CEO.”
A strong believer in free market principles, Mackey co-founded the Conscious Capitalism Movement and co-authored a New York Times and Wall Street Journal best-selling book entitled Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business (Harvard Business Review Press 2013) to boldly defend and reimagine capitalism, and encourage a way of doing business that is grounded in ethical consciousness. Mackey cut his pay to $1 in 2006 and continues to work for Whole Foods Market out of passion to see the business realize its potential for deeper purpose, for the joy of leading a great company and to answer the call to service that he feels in his heart.
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