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Jun 10, 2014

This vocational award recognizes individuals who, through their profession, have made the community a better place to live and work. Their contributions may have been in the form of important leadership activities or in the advancement of ideas, products or services.

Nan Gardetto is the Owner and Chief Executive Officer of Baptista's Bakery, a Franklin-based company with 375 employees that was recognized in 2013 by the Wisconsin Business Journal as one of southeastern Wisconsin's fastest growing firms. Recently, Snyder's-Lance, the snack manufacturer that produces Snyder's of Hanover pretzels, announced it entered into a letter of intent to acquire Baptista's Bakery for $195 million.

From 1975 to 1999 Nan served as executive vice president of Gardetto's Bakery, Inc., a family business her grandfather founded as an Italian bakery in 1932. The family sold Gardetto's Bakery to General Mills in 1998 after tremendous growth. Immediately following the sale, Nan started Baptista's Bakery in the former Gardetto's Franklin facility, keeping the new venture in Southeastern Wisconsin.  In 2012, the company invested $75,000,000 in an approximately 125,000 square-foot expansion to the existing Franklin production facility.

Nan is an entrepreneur, who, while having opportunities to start a company elsewhere, chose to remain in Southeastern Wisconsin. Through innovation, leadership and determination, she expanded the enterprise and made Southeastern Wisconsin a better place to live and work.