President & Owner
Arway Confectioners/Long Grove Confectionery
Chicago/Buffalo Grove, Ill.
Craig Leva is the president and owner of Arway Confections (Chicago) and Long Grove Confectionery (Buffalo Grove, Ill.). He began his confectionery journey in 1991 at Arway after graduating from the University of Wisconsin.
At the time, Arway was a small, relatively unknown regional candy maker specializing in high quality, bulk-packed panned and enrobed chocolate specialties as well as open fire copper kettle-cooked nut products. Leva started his career in sales, but his role quickly expanded to include many facets within the small company, including sales management, purchasing, operations and general management.
Nine year later (2000), Leva was given the opportunity to purchase a minority stake in the company, and over time continued to increase his ownership stake and responsibilities. Leva eventually took total control of the company in 2009.
Throughout his career Leva has been extremely successful with surrounding himself with an all-star team of employees, whom together have helped the business grow and prosper. In 2013 the company found itself in need of more space and capacity. Coincidentally, the opportunity to purchase Long Grove Confectionery, which was on the verge of collapse, presented itself.
Leva and his team took over the operations while working alongside with most of the existing employees, and managed to successfully turn the business around. During his 26-year tenure, the company has grown more than ten-fold, enabling Leva to make significant investments in additional space, equipment and infrastructure.
Today, Arway Confections and Long Grove Confectionery operate out of two manufacturing facilities totaling about 160,000 sq. ft. with more than 200 full time employees, along with an additional significant seasonal labor force.
Under Leva’s leadership, Arway and Long Grove have a well-deserved reputation for producing high quality confectionery products, delivering extremely dependable service and offering very competitive prices. Leva is married to his wife Monette of 24 years and they have 4 children (Ellee, Alex, Rachel, and Eli).