Coca-Cola Consolidated Has Been Good to Erlanger Since Moving In Former Theater Site
The City of Erlanger views Coca-Cola Consolidated as a good neighbor since it moves its massive operations into the old Showcase Cinemas site.
The 300,000-sq. ft., $33 million distribution facility has brought jobs, tax dollars, and a close relationship with the city.
The city noted that Coke Consolidated has been a frequent and enthusiastic supporter of Erlanger's first-responders, businesses, residents, students, and the city itself.
“We have really built a tremendous relationship with the City of Erlanger,” said Morris Howard, Coca-Cola Consolidated’s culture and engagement manager. “We want to do what we can to help out and be part of the community, and Mayor Jessica Fette and the city have repeatedly reached out to ask if there anything they can do for us. It’s a true partnership.”
“Coke Consolidated has been a tremendous Company to work with and has already become a leading business partner with the city,” Mayor Fette said. “Whenever I call Morris, he is ready to help.”
The company donated and delivered bottled water and Powerade to the First Responder Appreciation Celebration, which it also co-sponsored along with the City of Erlanger.
“We spoke to the mayor to let her know that we really wanted to support and encourage the first responders and others with the city who are on the front lines,” Howard said. “They deal with circumstances and situations - COVID issues or not - that a normal person never has to walk into, and they can’t refuse. So, we wanted to show them some love and appreciation for what they do every day.”
Coke Consolidated also participated in the summer's drive-thru grill out, donating drinks for the event that benefitted the city's E-Angel program, which connects Erlanger Police Social Worker Becky Strouse to residents in need.
“Morris recognized how important the E-Angel program is to our city and our residents, and he offered to help,” Fette said. “Coca-Cola Consolidated is continuing a wonderful traditional in Erlanger, where the city and the business community work together to help make this a great place to live and work.”
A Youth Development Platform was also created at Coke Consolidated as a program that visits schools and assists students in preparing for jobs.
“I generally talk to the kids about the learning skills they will need, resume building, interview skills, and more,” Howard said. “It’s really fun getting in front of actual students and giving them a chance to ask questions because we have a lot of good information to share. But also, you just never know what a student is going to ask!”
Coca-Cola Consolidated is the largest Coca-Cola bottler in the United States, a company that distributes more than 300 brands and flavors across 14 states to more than 66 million customers.
The company prides itself operating more as a small business in a local community, said Jennifer Richmond, the company's director of government affairs.
“When we have a facility in a local community, we work hard to make local connections and become an active part of that community,” Richmond said. “But we don't come in with a cookie-cutter approach. We talk to local stakeholders, work to identify the community’s needs and position ourselves to fill those needs and opportunities. For us, it is all about being a good neighbor and building long-lasting relationships with the community. And that's we are doing in Erlanger.”