News Release
 January 13, 2022
CONTACT: Kathy Sautter
716 635 5577

Williamsville, N.Y. – Since the onset of COVID-19, Tops has been at the forefront of protecting the communities that it serves and one year ago today the largest private, for-profit employer in Western New York hit the ground running by opening vaccination clinics across its imprint and conducting vaccinations through its 51 pharmacies.

Rapidly Tops Pharmacists and the support staff in Tops pharmacies were brought up to speed on the policies and procedures in order to be able to provide the Moderna vaccine to anyone who met the state qualifications for vaccination and later, once approved, Pfizer and Janssen.

“We hit the ground running as soon as we learned that we had an earlier opportunity to be part of the solution against the pandemic,” said Tops director of Pharmacy, Matthew Hamed. “We had to prepare our pharmacies to properly administer and store the vaccines, while setting up scheduling software in order to effectively and efficiently roll out vaccine clinics at our stores. It was a quickly moving target and required all hands on deck and I’m extremely proud of what we’ve accomplished.”

Looking back a lot has changed since the onset of the vaccination rollout. From the types of vaccines that were administered to the ages in which they were administered to, the Tops pharmacy teams were constantly shifting gears. “I was beyond impressed with all areas of our pharmacy team,” said Kristen Hanson, vice president of center store, our brands & pharmacy. “From those on the front lines in our pharmacies to those behind the scenes, not only are they juggling the ever changing parameters that are synonymous with COVID-19, but also still caring for our customer’s day to day needs of filling prescriptions, administering flu vaccinations, conducting DMV eye exams and more. Their ability to flex on a dime is amazing!”

And the community has been recognizing the efforts being made by the Tops pharmacy team. From tears of joy after being given their vaccination cards to notes of gratitude from patients and partners alike, the accolades have been plentiful.

“I just wanted to give a compliment for one of your employees. I had an appointment to get the Covid-19 Vaccine at store #220. It was a really great experience. There is always some apprehension when getting shots, but this was one of the best experiences I have had. I really want to give kudos to your pharmacist, Katie Marcheson, who administered it. She was very friendly and nice. She explained everything thoroughly and made sure we didn't have any follow up questions. She made me feel at ease through the whole process. I just wanted to pass along this compliment so you know how awesome of an employee you have.” - Sincerely, Michael L.

“We are committed to keeping our team members safe and healthy, and Tops Pharmacy is a great partner in this effort, said Joe Duscher, chief operating officer for Upstate Niagara Cooperative, Inc. “Scheduling vaccination clinics at as many of our worksites as possible is just one way of ensuring that all our employees and their families have easy access to the vaccines, be it the Covid-19 series, boosters, or flu vaccines. It is the right thing to do for our employees, and it also allows us to continue to supply delicious and nutritious dairy products to our communities.”

### About Tops Friendly Markets Based in Williamsville, NY, Tops Markets currently operates 162 grocery stores in New York, Pennsylvania, and Vermont, including five that are run by franchisees. As the largest private, for-profit employer in Western New York, with more than 14,000 associates, the company is dedicated to providing sustainably sourced, high-quality products, while helping its communities flourish via support for programs that eradicate hunger and disease, educate youth and reduce environmental waste and energy consumption. For more information, visit


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