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Mayo Clinic surgeon takes the wheel as Kwik Trip's new CEO

Dr. Scott Zietlow, who has worked at Mayo Clinic since the early 1990s, will take on the titles of president and CEO of the La Crosse, Wis.-based Kwik Trip at the start of 2023. He is replacing his father, Don Zietlow, who is retiring.

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Dr. Scott Zietlow.
Contributed / Mayo Clinic
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ROCHESTER — A longtime Mayo Clinic trauma surgeon and medical professor is taking the reins of his family’s Kwik Trip convenience store empire as his father retires from his role as CEO.

Dr. Scott Zietlow , who has worked at Mayo Clinic since the early 1990s, will take on the titles of president and CEO of the La Crosse, Wis.-based Kwik Trip at the start of 2023. Dr. Zietlow is also the chair of the Kwik Trip’s board of directors.

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He is leaving his position of professor of surgery in Mayo Clinic’s trauma, critical care and general surgery division. Zietlow has served in a variety of leadership positions at Mayo Clinic, including as chairman of the Mayo Clinic Medical Transport Board .

“I am honored to follow my dad’s legacy of guiding Kwik Trip. We are a very strong company and with our 36,000 phenomenal co-workers, great retail locations, and industry-leading vertical integration, our future is bright,” stated Dr. Zietlow in the announcement of his appointment.

Don Zeitlow, who is considered a founder of Kwik Trip, has worked at the company for 52 years, 22 years of that as the CEO.

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The company's roots date back to a grocery store business in 1965. The groceries evolved into Kwik Trip in 1971 and it was led by the Hansen and Zietlow families in Eau Claire, Wis. The headquarters moved to La Crosse, Wis. in 1973. The Zietlow family became the sole owners in 2000.

The company now operates more than 800 locations in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois and Michigan.

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The Kwik Trip on Scott Road NW in Rochester.
Post Bulletin file photo

Kwik Trip has 15 locations in Rochester. The 15 stores add up to 93,302-square-feet of space under the Kwik Trip signs.

That sum is larger than the 90,000-square-foot Hy-Vee grocery store on West Circle Drive. Hy-Vee built that store on land purchased from Kwik Trip's real estate arm, Northwest Investments.

Northwest Investments is also the force behind the 108-acre development at West Circle Drive and 19th Street Northwest. That development attracted Costco to Rochester and has since seen several hotels, restaurants, stores and banks built around it.

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Jeff Kiger writes a daily column, "Heard Around Rochester," in addition to writing articles about local businesses, Mayo Clinic, IBM, Hormel Foods, Crenlo and others. The opinions of my employer do not necessarily reflect my opinions. He has worked in Rochester for the Post Bulletin since 1999. Send tips to jkiger@postbulletin.com or via Twitter to @whereskiger . You can call him at 507-285-7798.
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