READERS’ CHOICE AWARDS
Distributor of the Year
Vend Northwest Distributing Co. By Emily Refermat,
Portland, Ore. Managing Editor
V ending is not an easy business these days, but
Curtis Wokal, vice president of operations, Vend
Northwest Distributing Co. in Portland, Ore. still
loves it. “It’s different every day,” he said.
After high school, Wokal spent eight years in the military
After 15 years in
service is more
before joining Coca-Cola Co. as a driver. Sensing more than waiting for
growth opportunity at Vend Northwest Distributing Co., he operators to call
joined that company in 1994 as a warehouse employee. him. He writes
At Vend Northwest Distributing, Wokal became aware
a regular blog
that vend products and equipment were constantly evolv-
which he sends
ing as he worked his way up the ladder at the company. He
learned to appreciate the constant inﬂux of new products
available to vendors, and the large variety of snacks.
In these difﬁcult times, he works closely with manufac-
turers to bring vending operators the best deals on products.
Individual attention to customers is important to Wokal.
He monitors the number of cases his customers order, and
if they get close to qualifying for a