If you have not yet cruised through Gelson’s Markets’ fresh departments with Paul Kneeland, you need to add this to your retail wish list. From produce to deli and prepared foods, this man can make sales into poetry and vice versa. His fresh acumen, experience, passion, and knowledge have allowed him to reinvent and re-envision the way Gelson’s Markets speaks about and executes its fresh food strategy. From organic produce to local artisans, there is no territory that does not inspire this retail trailblazer. But, accolades aside, he is also just an awesome person to know. So, we thought we would let Paul share a little bit more of himself with you in our renowned IF List…
IF you could join a musician, dead or alive, on stage to sing along or play an instrument with, who would you choose and why?
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Just a smooth vibe.
IF you wrote an autobiography, what would be the title?
Hey, There Is the Easy Way Right There! Let’s Go This Way Instead.
IF you could be a character in any book, who would it be?
The Cat in the Hat.
IF you could have any actor play you in a movie, who would you want?
Ben Affleck. We grew up in the same city.
IF you could have dinner with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be?
Winston Churchill—on leadership and decision making.
IF you could have been born in another century or decade, which would it be and why?
The 1940s, so I could experience the ’50s and ’60s—muscle cars and music!
IF you had to choose now, what would your last meal consist of?
Short ribs, mushroom risotto, a California Cabernet, and tiramisu.
IF you could imagine yourself in a different industry, what would it be?
The restaurant business. I love when people enjoy my food!
IF you were another species in the animal kingdom, what would you be?
A panther. They are so cool.
IF you had $10 million that you had to donate to someone else, who would you choose and why?
Elon Musk, if he focused on curing cancer. He finds a way to get stuff done.
IF you had to choose one song to be the soundtrack of your year, what would it be?
“We Are the Champions” by Queen.
IF you could redo one moment or event in your life, which one would you choose and why?
Nothing. I learned a lot from my mistakes.
IF you could give your younger self one piece of advice, what would it be?
Do what you love to do.