Robotic Industries Association, Ann Arbor, Mich.
Matt Wicks, vice president of product development, manufacturing systems for Intelligrated, was appointed to a 2-year term on the board of directors. Wicks maintains a background in systems integration and robotic applications in high-growth logistics markets, including experience with warehousing, distribution and e-commerce fulfillment operations. He brings more than 20 years of engineering and robotics experience in the material handling industry. His current focus is leading an interdisciplinary product development team at Intelligrated to expand the use of robotic technology to solve logistics challenges.
Canadian Meat Council, Canada
Christopher White was appointed new president and CEO, effective immediately. White maintains more than 20 years’ experience in government relations and public affairs. Previous positions include chief of staff for five federal cabinet ministers and vice president of government relations in the finance, insurance and auto sectors.
California Giant, Watsonville, Calif.
Jonathan Sparks joined the sales team, bringing almost 20 years of produce industry experience. Sparks will be managing existing trading partner accounts and developing new business relationships. Sparks was most recently the berry category manager for Robinson Fresh.
Just Desserts, San Francisco
David Baffoni was appointed vice president of engineering and production, responsible for day-to-day production activities and engineering requirements at the company’s Fairfield, Calif., bakery. Baffoni brings over 30 years of food processing management experience, and maintains a track record of increasing responsibility with fast-growing food processing operations. Baffoni began his career in engineering and capital project management at the Louis Rich Co., focused on improving productivity and developing new standards. He then spent 23 years at Diamond Foods, ultimately serving as senior director of manufacturing, where he led an operation comprised of 800 employees, a 550,000-square-foot production facility and a 75-acre site. Most recently, he was general manager of operations for Farmers Rice.
Stavis Seafoods, Boston, Mass.
Brandii Holmdahl will serve as the new director of quality, charged with overseeing the overall quality and consistency of the company’s seafood, including food safety, standards implementation and auditing and developing process and traceability controls. She will also be responsible for leading its efforts in meeting the global standards of the British Retail Consortium (BRC). Holmdahl most recently served as Northwest manager for quality operations at Icicle Seafoods, Inc., where she worked directly with harvesters to improve raw product quality and traceability through training and innovation. She also served as the quality manager at Icicle Seafoods’ Seward Fish, where she implemented database tracking and traceability programs and guided the company through BRC audits. Holmdahl also held plant manager positions at Snopak Seafoods and Snug Harbor, and served as borough assembly representative for District 6 (Kenai Peninsula, Alaska). She maintains more than 20 years of experience in seafood, and is NOAA/USDC HACCP, Lean Manufacturing, IPM and AQS independent auditor certified. Meanwhile, Charles “Chuck” Marble will serve as the company’s president, responsible for helping build the Stavis brands, develop product and channel opportunities and integrate the recently opened Peabody, Mass., facility into the operations. He will also be responsible for executing on the company’s aggressive growth strategy, which includes breaking ground on a state-of-the-art facility in Boston’s Marine Industrial Park later this year. Marble maintains more than 30 years of experience in the food industry, including senior management and executive positions at Elevation Brands, Weetabix Food Co. and Triad Foods Group. At Elevation, he rejuvenated Ian’s Natural Foods by pioneering an allergy friendly/gluten-free line and acquired Blue Horizon Wild. At Weetabix, he amalgamated three operating companies now known as Weetabix North America, while restructuring internally into a branded, private label and co-manufacturing business. Chuck also serves as chair-elect for the Cornell University Food Science Advisory Council and executive board member for the New England Celiac Organization. Marble replaces Jack Fleishman, who has held the role on an interim basis since October 2016.
Harrison Poultry Inc., Bethlehem, Ga.
David Bleth, vice president of operations, will become president and CEO, upon Mike Welch’s retirement, effective end of April. Welch began his poultry industry career in 1967, working his way up through the ranks holding management positions at several major poultry companies before joining Harrison Poultry. He provided Senate testimony on economic pressures facing the industry, and served as chairman of the National Chicken Council and a board member of industry organizations such as Georgia Poultry Federation, the Georgia Poultry Improvement Association and the World Poultry Foundation (WPF). Bleth joined the company in 2009 following a progression of engineering and operations leadership roles in Hormel, Baader, Wayne Farms, Gold N’ Plump Poultry and American Seafoods Group.
Handy Seafood, Salisbury, Md.
Mike McGrath was named foodservice business development manager for the mid-Atlantic region, effective March 17. Most recently, he was with the Core Group, and prior to that, spent 3 years with Waypoint, where he gained experience showing and selling the Handy product line in Virginia and the coastal Carolina markets.
Santa Monica Seafood, Rancho Dominguez, Calif.
Sandy Ornelas was hired as a category manager to oversee the purchasing strategy for fresh seafood. O’Brien is a bilingual, international supply chain professional with over 20 years of comprehensive sourcing, contract negotiation and inventory analysis experience. She most recently served as director of purchasing at Overhill Farms, and obtained seafood experience working at Golden Beach, Inc., Contessa Food Products and Sunfare LLC.
Hayssen Flexible Systems, a Barry-Wehmiller company, Duncan, S.C.
Dan Irod was appointed business development director, Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), responsible for developing new sales channels and supporting customers in these markets. Irod brings performance-focused expertise and creative problem-solving skills in both sales and production environments.
Seegrid, Pittsburgh, Pa.
Steven Barto was appointed chief financial officer. Barto maintains more than 30 years of experience, and has held CFO and executive positions at both privately held and public technology companies. Most recently, he was executive vice president and CFO of ITC Global (acquired by Panasonic Corp.). Prior to that, he was senior vice president, general manager and CFO of Vocollect (acquired by Honeywell). He has also served as chief financial officer of BPL Global, Ltd. (acquired by Danaher, now Fortive), and previously held executive financial leadership positions at Ericsson, Marconi and RELTEC. Barto is also a CPA who began his career and worked through senior manager at Price Waterhouse (now PwC).
Flash Global, Mountain Lakes, N.J.
James (Jay) Lynch was promoted to vice president general manager of Flash Parts. Lynch, who has been with Flash since November 2015, will create optimized, scalable business plans that drive consistent execution of all sales and repair services. Ryan Miller was promoted to vice president, global marketing. Since joining Flash in July 2015, Miller has provided the vision and direction of all global marketing efforts to ensure company growth. In his expanded role, he will also focus on new product/service development, continue to create and refine the company’s identify and positioning and foster unity/inspire focus for employees worldwide. Kara Jones was promoted to global vice president, human resources. Jones has been global director of human resources since joining Flash in March 2016, and will continue to build an empowering HR infrastructure.
Ascent Global Logistics, Cudahy, Wis.
Aaron Brott was appointed vice president of strategic accounts for Marisol International, responsible for increasing business opportunities and generating revenue from key national and strategic customers. Brott joined Ascent Global Logistics’ parent company Roadrunner Transportation Systems in 2014, and maintains 21 years of diversified management experience in operations, customer service, marketing and sales in the supply chain and logistics industry spanning domestic airfreight, international freight forwarding as well as warehousing and distribution. Previously, Brott has held positions with APL Logistics, UTi Worldwide, UPS Supply Chain and Emery Worldwide.
Plastic Technologies, Inc. (PTI), Holland, Ohio
Craig Robinson joined as director of business development and innovation. Robinson brings more than 30 years of business development experience in a wide variety of industries, including packaging, orthopedic products and medical devices. Most recently, Robinson was director of business development for Kaleidoscope Imaging, and spent more than 20 years as president and COO of Vantage Orthopedics.
Superior Uniform Group, Inc., Seminole, Fla.
President Alan Schwartz will retire, effective March 31.
CX North America Information Services Inc., Canada
Irvin Banut was named regional marketing manager. Banut brings a wealth of digital marketing knowledge. Previously, he worked as a digital marketing manager at Web Geeks, Inc., and as a digital account coordinator at Momentum Digital Solutions. Julia Reznikov was named client engagement manager. With more than nine years of experience in providing customer service in a variety of businesses, Reznikov possesses a keen ability to cultivate and maintain positive client relationships. And, Dawn Allman was appointed a sales executive. With more than 17 years of account management experience, Allman has consistently met or exceeded her sales goals for companies like USA Mobility and Arch Wireless. Her expertise extends to new business development, product and sales training development and client nurturing.
Action Technology, a Tekni-Plex company, Wayne, Pa.
Peter De Cock was promoted to global sales director, responsible for the worldwide sales efforts of a variety of aerosol and pump dispensing components used to dispense food and beverage products, among others.
U.S. Xpress Enterprises, Inc., Chattanooga, Tenn.
Eric Fuller will assume the role of chief executive officer. Fuller has worked for U.S. Xpress for nearly 20 years in various management roles, including regional operations manager and senior vice president of operations. For the past 5 years, he has served as president and COO, responsible for operations including over-the-road, dedicated services, customer service and planning. Lisa Quinn Pate was named new president and chief administrative officer. Quinn Pate has worked for U.S. Xpress since 2002 in critical functions such as information technology, human resources and safety. Prior to being named president, Pate served as general counsel and the chief administrative officer of U.S. Xpress. Max Fuller will take on the role of executive chairman. Fuller, co-founder of U.S. Xpress, will focus on the company’s long-term strategy, industry innovation, talent development and equipment.
IN MEMORIUM: GEORGE BELL, STAR FOODS
George L. "Lem" Bell, retired owner and past president of Star Foods, Inc., Beachwood, Ohio, passed away March 13.
A native of Mecklenburg County, he was the husband of the late Jean Hamilton Bell and the son of Monroe Patterson Bell and Lena Smith Bell, both deceased.
Bell was a veteran of the U.S. Army, serving during the Korean Conflict. He was also a member of the Burlington Kiwanis Club and the Alamance Wildlife Club, and was a member of the Refrigerated Foods Association.
Survivors include a daughter, Jeanie Bell Burris and husband Brad of Whitsett; grandchildren, Taylor Ward, Tanner Baker and Sarah Patton, all of Whitsett; three great-grandchildren, Cassidy Patton, Chance Patton and Camryn Patton; his best friend, Scooter; a special friend and helper, Victor Snead; nieces and nephews, Aurelia Curtis, Lee Harless, Charlie Caudle, Clinton Bell and Lina Soares; and more.
Bell was preceded in death by a son, M. Patterson "Pat" Bell; six sisters, Margaret Bell, Lenora Bell, Mary Bell, Kathryn Bell, Louise Bell Caudle and Lina Bell; and three brothers, Monroe Bell, James Bell and Hugh Bell.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to:
The March of Dimes, 1275 Mamaroneck Ave, White Plains, NY 10605
Spina Bifida Research, 1600 Wilson Blvd, Suite 800, Arlington, VA 22200
American Cancer Society , 4-A Oak Branch Drive, Greensboro, NC 2740