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Updated: May 1, 2023 / Power 50 for 2023

2023 Power 50: Ralph Crowley Jr

Ralph Crowley, a gray hair\ed and older man, portrait headshot Photo | Courtesy Ralph Crowley Jr. is the president & CEO of Polar Beverages in Worcester
Ralph Crowley Jr Title President & CEO Company Polar Beverages, in Worcester Residence Worcester Colleges Bowdoin College in Maine, Clark University in Worcester Read all the 2023 Power 50 profiles here
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Polar Beverages may still be a family business led by Ralph Crowley Jr., but it has become a national player in the beverage industry. Polar is the 11th largest manufacturer in Central Massachusetts, and it’s growing. With 800 local employees, the company has 1,100 across the state and another 2,000 globally, Polar isn’t slowing down.

With the 2021 acquisition of the Temple Bottling Co. in Texas, to go along with the expansion of its factory in Fitzgerald, Georgia, and long-term partnership with Keurig Dr Pepper Inc., to distribute in the Midwest – and contract produce the conglomerate's products in the Northeast – the 141-year-old company has pushed itself further from its home in Worcester.

On top of Crowley’s work as the president and CEO of Polar, he is part owner of the Worcester Red Sox, which plays in the aptly named Polar Park. Crowley was the first Worcester-based investor in the minor league team after it announced it would leave Pawtucket for Worcester in 2018. With that spot in the ownership box, Crowley owns some control in who the WooSox sell to when ownership decides it’s time. It also means he has his hands in the ongoing redevelopment of the Canal District and Kelley Square.

Crowley and his four siblings own The Wachusett Mountain Ski Area in Princeton, which is the largest tourist attraction in Central Massachusetts with more than 655,000 annual visitors in 2022 and 1,421 employees.

How should professionals best use the power they wield? “We are thrilled with our investment in the WooSox and Polar Park. It is amazing to see what is happening in the city and the Canal District in particular.”

Orange you glad I didn't say plain seltzer? Crowley's favorite Polar flavor is Orange Dry, and his favorite seltzer is Orange Vanilla.

Read all the 2023 Power 50 profiles here.

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