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BASD Distinguished Alumni: Carole Bitter (Friedman) Ph.D.

Carole Bitter (Friedman) Ph.D.

Carole Bitter (Friedman) Ph.D.
Class of 1963.

Carole Bitter earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and psychology at Case Western Reserve University in 1967. She went on to earn a Masters in Business Administration from Northeastern University in 1974. Two years later, in 1976, Bitter became the President and CEO of Friedman’s Supermarkets and BiLo Foods as one of the first women to manage a grocery chain.

She completed a Doctorate in Agricultural Economics from Cornell University 1981. During her time at Cornell, she held research and teaching assistant positions and as a consultant on electronic funds transfer systems, the subject of her dissertation.

Bitter has received numerous awards from the food industry. Some of those awards include: Women Grocers of America’s 2003 Woman of the Year, chosen as one of Pennsylvania's Best 50 Women in Business by the Business Journals of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, recognized as one of the “top women in grocery” by the Progressive Grocer, and numerous Grocers Care Awards from the National Grocers Association for commitment to the community.

As a community leader and active supporter of local schools, civic organizations, hospitals, and charities, Bitter served on the Board of Butler Memorial Hospital, Butler County Historical Society, and Butler Area Health Resources Development Corporation. She was the president of the Butler Area Chamber of Commerce, co-founder of the Butler County Labor/Management Committee and Vice Chairman of the Butler Downtown Renaissance Commission. She has worked closely with United Way of Butler and the Butler Road Race.

In 2000 Bitter was presented with the True Citizen Award by the City of Butler. She has also served on the Board of the National Grocers Association, the Food Marketing Institute, The Pennsylvania Food Merchants Association, the Nash Finch Company and Nextier Bank.





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