In Memory of Ann Maynard

By: Jim Roddy, President & CEO at the RSPA

Our community is mourning the loss of Ann Maynard, one of the most beloved members in the 75-year history of the RSPA and the first woman inducted into the RSPA Retail Technology Industry Hall of Fame. Ann passed away of a heart attack Aug. 2, the morning after RetailNOW 2023, our association’s annual trade show and conference. Ann and her husband B.J. were the principals of reseller Merchant Data Solutions in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

It’s difficult to put into words what Ann meant to our community – and what our community meant to her. She was a driving force behind raising funds for the RSPA Scholarship Program. Every RetailNOW, including this year, she could be found at the RSPA booth and in the show hallways raising money for kids. To date, the RSPA Scholarship Program has awarded nearly $3 million to families of RSPA member companies.

Last year at RetailNOW 2022, a team of on-site member volunteers led by Ann raised a record of nearly $8,000 for the RSPA Scholarship Program. Ann created handmade butterfly magnets and gave them to each donor. Each magnet included this quote: “The Butterfly Effect: A moment that redefines Philanthropy one butterfly at a time by allowing us the opportunity to give to our cause.” Also, Ann was on stage when Terry Zeigler of Datacap Systems announced a $50,000 donation to create the Datacap Systems Scholarship.

In 2023, Ann was unable to travel to Hawaii for the RSPA Inspire leadership conference, but she was there in spirit as volunteers raised nearly $6,000 for the Scholarship Fund and donors were rewarded with more butterfly magnets. At this year’s RetailNOW, 20 member volunteers raised a record of just over $20,000 for the Scholarship Fund. Ann coordinated a silent auction of an 1875 vintage cash till box that raised $1,300. It was her final act of kindness in 78 years filled with kindness for others.

Ann was the very definition of kindness. Before I left this year’s show, I wanted to make sure I said goodbye to Ann. When I stopped by the RSPA booth moments before the expo hall closed, I found her autographing one of her butterfly magnets for a temporary worker RSPA had hired to help with registration. That worker was one of dozens (maybe hundreds) of RetailNOW attendees who made sure to find Ann at the show, give her a hug, and hold her hand.

Poet Maya Angelou wrote, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Ann Maynard made us all feel loved.

Ann’s family has asked, in lieu of flowers, to donate to the RSPA Scholarship Fund: Follow this link to read Ann’s obituary in the Myrtle Beach Sun News: Ann Maynard 1945-2023

Our condolences to B.J. and the Maynard family. May Ann’s memory be a blessing!

Jim Roddy is the President and CEO of the Retail Solutions Providers Association (RSPA). He has been active in the retail IT channel since 1998, including 11 years as the President of Business Solutions Magazine, six years as an RSPA board member, one term as RSPA Chairman of the Board, and several years as a business coach for VARs, ISVs, and MSPs. Jim has been recognized as one of the world’s Top Retail Influencers by RETHINK Retail, a Leading CannaTech Influencer by The CannaTech Group, and is regularly requested to speak at industry conferences on SMB best practices. He is author of two books – The Walk-On Method To Career & Business Success and Hire Like You Just Beat Cancer – and is host of the award-winning RSPA Trusted Advisor podcast. For more information, contact