Sr. Director, Corporate Affairs, The Kroger Co.
Denise Osterhues leads Kroger’s sustainability, philanthropy and community engagement efforts as part of the Corporate Affairs leadership team. Her responsibilities include leading and advancing change through Kroger’s Zero Hunger | Zero Waste social impact plan, the company’s commitment to end hunger in its communities and eliminate waste by 2025. This includes developing the strategy and plans to launch Kroger’s Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Innovation Fund, which aims to identify and finance new solutions to the complex issues of food insecurity and food waste in the U.S.
Denise joined Kroger in 2007 in the Corporate Affairs Department in Cincinnati. She was promoted to director of Associate Communications & Engagement in 2011, and promoted to senior director in 2014. She took on her current role in 2017 to help lead the company’s social impact plan.
Before joining Kroger, she led community development communications at First Union National Bank in Charlotte, including efforts to serve low-income neighborhoods and customers, and served in several roles at The Dow Chemical Company in Midland, Mich., including media relations and financial communications, and environment, health and safety communications for the company and Dow Plastics.
Denise earned a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the University of Kansas. She and her husband, Craig, live in Cincinnati with their two sons. She currently serves on the board of the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati and was previously a Court Appointed Special Advocate for ProKids of Hamilton County, Ohio.
The Kroger Co.
Kroger’s Zero Hunger | Zero Waste social impact plan is our commitment to end hunger in our communities and eliminate waste across our company by 2025.
There is a fundamental absurdity in our food system: 40% of the food produced in the U.S. is thrown away, yet 1 in 8 Americans struggle with hunger. As America’s grocer, we believe we have to do something about this, and more importantly, we believe we can do something about it because of our size, scale and passionate associates.
Zero Hunger | Zero Waste was inspired by Our Purpose – to Feed the Human Spirit™ – and is a key pillar of Restock Kroger, the company’s three-year plan to change the way America eats.
Our Zero Hunger | Zero Waste plan includes accelerating food rescue to donate 1 billion meals by 2020 and 3 billion meals by 2025; achieving zero waste company-wide by 2020 and zero food waste by 2025; applying data and insights from 84.51° to identify opportunities to improve food security and apply a family-centered, design thinking approach to improving food security; and introducing Kroger’s new Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Innovation Fund to find and finance innovative solutions to reduce food waste.
We can’t do it alone, so we are inviting everyone to join us on our ‘moonshot’ mission, including our associates, customers and partners like Feeding America, World Wildlife Fund and ReFED. Follow our journey at #ZeroHungerZeroWaste.