Southern Wine & Spirits of America Announces Retirement of Tom Collins, EVP, GM of South Carolina

Dec 14, 2015, 11:00 ET from Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc.

MIAMI, Dec. 14, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc. (Southern)--the nation's leading wine and spirits distributor with operations in 35 markets--today announced the retirement of Tom Collins, Executive Vice President, General Manager of the company's South Carolina division. Collins retirement will be effective February 1, 2016.

The 40-year industry veteran joined Southern Wine & Spirits of South Carolina (SWS-SC) in 1993 as Vice President, General Sales Manager. Collins was promoted to Executive Vice President, General Manager in 2007. Upon retirement, he will continue providing valuable support to Southern as a consultant on legislative matters in South Carolina.

"It has truly been an invaluable experience working at Southern and with the Chaplin family. I'm honored to have spent much of my professional career with Southern, and know that the company has a wonderful future ahead in the state of South Carolina," commented Collins.

Expressing his personal thanks to Collins for his over two decades of service to Southern, Harvey R. Chaplin, Southern's Chairman, said, "We extend our deepest gratitude to Tom for his dedication to the industry and commitment to his colleagues, team members, and the many suppliers and customers in South Carolina. As a founding member of the South Carolina team, Tom was instrumental in laying the foundation for Southern's continued success in the market. We wish him the very best in retirement."

"On behalf of the senior leadership team and Tom's many colleagues across Southern, we thank him for his decades of professionalism and accomplishments," added Wayne E. Chaplin, Southern's President & CEO. He continued, "With retirement comes new horizons, and we hope that Tom will enjoy this next journey in life. Congratulations and thank you, Tom."

Brad Vassar, Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, remarked, "We are tremendously thankful for Tom's considerable length and high quality of service to the company. His loyalty and value to Southern will extend into his retirement as we look forward to continuing to leverage his industry knowledge and market insights. And, for that continued commitment, we are immensely grateful."

Collins has had a well-conceived leadership team succession plan in place for South Carolina for years, and Steve Baker, Vice President, General Sales Manager for SWS-SC, will step into the General Manager position following Collin's retirement. Baker has been with SWS-SC for 22 years serving in various positions with increasing roles of responsibility in wine and spirits—including roles overseeing the company's business in Hilton Head, Charleston, Myrtle Beach and Columbia areas before assuming his current role. A native of Charleston, Baker received his Bachelor degree from the College of Charleston in South Carolina. Baker is married to Julie and they have three children.

About Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc.

Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc. is the nation's largest wine and spirits distributor and broker with operations in 35 markets. The multi-state distributor currently operates in: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Kentucky, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wyoming. Southern also holds operating licenses and permits in Nebraska and Texas. On a national basis, Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc. employs more than 14,000 team members. Southern urges all retail customers and adult consumers to market, sell, serve and enjoy its products responsibly.

For more information about Southern and its responsible consumption program, see:

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SOURCE Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc.