IRI, Chicago

Nishat Mehta was named president of the IRI Media Center of Excellence, effective June 19. Mehta will work closely with IRI’s CPG, retail and media clients to transform their use of media and promotions to deliver growth, increased return on advertising spending and improved consumer engagement. Mehta most recently led the customer communications team at 84.51º, where he helped The Kroger Co. and its CPG brand partners create relevant and personalized communications with consumers. Before leading this team, he served as 84.51º’s head of brand media, leveraging the power of data and other retail assets to improve CPG advertising. Prior to his roles at 84.51º, Mehta was responsible for developing strategic partnerships at dunnhumby Ltd., where he led the elevation of the company’s digital media measurement and targeting business, transforming the way CPG brands bought, sold and measured their media.

Food Marketing Institute (FMI), Arlington, Va.
Stephanie Barnes was promoted to chief regulatory officer and legal counsel, to include legal oversight of FMI’s bylaws and antitrust guidelines. After over three years as the industry’s regulatory point person, Barnes has helped member companies craft compliance strategies on a broad range of regulations, including the FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). She has also compiled dozens of regulatory comments, represented the industry on a number of food law panels and hosted informational webinars. Since 2009, LeAnn Chuboff has dedicated her career to the division of FMI responsible for developing, maintaining and promoting the Safe Quality Food Institute’s (SQFI) code. She was promoted to vice president, SQFI technical affairs, tasked with directing all technical aspects of the SQFI program, including the food safety standards, guidelines, training materials and audit and certification protocols. Sarah Malenich was promoted to director, Safe Quality Food Institute sales and marketing, a role focused on promoting and elevating all SQFI programs, which include the SQF food safety and quality certification program as well as the SQFI Ethical Sourcing Certification. Malenich is responsible for leading and directing the development and implementation of SQFI’s strategic sales, marketing and business development plans and initiatives. Her duties also include managing communications, websites and marketing materials to stakeholders, including suppliers, certifying bodies and training centers, to help implement increased SQF recognition and site and training registrations. Dr. Hilary Thesmar was promoted to chief food and product safety officer and senior vice president, food safety programs, responsible for supervising food safety programs, initiatives, activities and resources for FMI and its members. She represents FMI to a wide audience of stakeholders and professionals, including various governmental, Congressional, scientific, consumer and industry audiences on issues related to food safety and government regulatory compliance. Under Thesmar’s direction, the FMI food safety team also updated and created several critical resources, including a Food Allergen Resource Document, a Listeria Action Plan for Retailers and a sample FSMA Distribution Center Food Safety Plan to assist with FSMA compliance.

USA Poultry & Egg Export Council (USAPEEC), Stone Mountain, Ga.
Marc Killebrew
, vice president of international sales at Tyson Foods, was elected chairman of the board for 2017-18, succeeding outgoing chairman Steve Monroe, manager of export sales at Sanderson Farms. As chairman, Killebrew will head the 30-member board of directors, which sets policy and gives direction to USAPEEC. Elected to the executive committee were Butch Johnson, director of Globex International USA, as first vice chairman; and Ryan Downes, sales manager at Farbest Foods, as second vice chairman. Joel Coleman, vice president and general manager of international and industrial commodity sales at Butterball, was re-elected secretary-treasurer. Rounding out the executive committee are Mark Barrett, vice president of Lamex Foods, as new at-large member; Chaz Wilson, chief operating officer of Grove Services, as new at-large member; Scott Chapman, vice president of industry relations at Lineage Logistics, as associate member-at-large; and Gary Berg, District 13 director at the Illinois Soybean Association, as commodity member at large. Thierry Murad, global product manager-poultry at AJC International, was named chairman of the marketing committee. New board members elected are Ashley Bahceci, director at Hakan Foods; Kenny Raney, vice president of commodity sales and logistics for Simmons Prepared Foods; Paul Sauder, president and CEO of Sauder Farms; Jen Ehresmann, senior vice president of commodities and supply chain for Jennie-O Turkey Store; Jeff Jorgenson, president of Iowa Soybean Association; Jim Bauman, director of market analysis of National Corn Growers Association; Keith Truckor, chairman of Ohio Corn Marketing Council; and Bob Metz, director at the United Soybean Board. Board members elected to 3-year terms ending in 2020 are Bahceci, Chapman, Johnson, Murad, Raney, Wilson, Oleg Kovalev, director of export sales at Mountaire Farms; Sujith Niyangoda, managing director at e&e Global; Jay Simpson, director of global commodity and trading exports at Perdue Foods; and Greg Tench, sales manager at Mar-Jac Poultry. Board members elected to terms ending in 2019 are Barrett, Downes, Sauder, Mike Briggs, partner at Vilas & Co.; Bill Duggan, vice president at Maersk Line; Daniel Fripp, manager of commodity and international sales for Foster Farms; Tyson Hall, president and CEO at Pilgrim’s; Thomas Isaf, vice president of Interra International; Kent Puffenbarger, sales manager at Prestage Foods; and Bobby Wilburn, director of sales and marketing for Peco Foods. Board members elected to terms ending in 2018 are Coleman; Ehresmann; Killebrew; Monroe; Mark Blanchard, president and CEO of New Orleans Cold Storage; Greg Hinton, vice president at Rose Acre Farms; John Patchoski, sales coordinator at Koch Foods; Martin Piffaretti, vice president of export sales for Eastern Quality Foods; Saher Rizk, chief executive officer of Mirasco; and Jim Wayt, managing director at Intervision Foods, LLC.

BJ's Wholesale Club, Inc., Westborough, Mass.
Scott Kessler was named executive vice president, CIO, taking over for Peter Amalfi, who plans to retire later this year. Kessler maintains extensive experience leading information technology at multi-billion dollar retailers and e-commerce companies. Most recently, he was executive vice president, CIO at Belk, and prior to that, was senior vice president, products technology at GSI Commerce. He also held a leadership position at Accenture, working for a variety of global clients. In addition, Rafeh Masood joined in the newly created role of senior vice president, chief digital officer, responsible for driving the strategy and vision for the company’s e-commerce and omnichannel efforts. He will also focus on programs and initiatives that drive sales, showcase value and enhance convenience for members. Previously, he was vice president, customer innovation technology at Dick’s Sporting Goods, where he was responsible for all digital platforms, enterprise architecture and the use of technology to improve the customer experience.

Tyson Foods, Springdale, Ark.
Scott Spradley was hired to become chief technology officer, effective June 26, taking over for Devin Graham, who served as interim chief technology officer and will remain with the company as vice president, technology. Spradley has been chief information officer at Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) since 2008, where he led efforts to separate IT functions when Hewlett Packard split into two Fortune 50 companies. He previously worked at Chevron, where he led North American shared services. He also held several leadership positions at Intel Corp., including director of greater Asia shared services.

TreeHouse Foods, Inc., Oak Brook, Ill.
Robert Aiken, Jr. was appointed president and COO, effective July 10, taking over for Dennis Riordan, who had previously announced his retirement. Aiken most recently served as president and CEO of Essendant Inc. Prior to Essendant, Aiken served as chief executive officer of Feeding America. From 2004-2010, he served as president and CEO of US Foods, where he led efforts to drive more than $1.2 billion of private label sales growth and profitability improvement through reorganization, information technology consolidation and cost reduction. He also served as president and CEO of Metz Baking Co., a subsidiary of Specialty Foods Corp.

Naturipe Farms, Salinas, Calif.
CarrieAnn Arias was named vice president of marketing, effective June 9, responsible for leading the brand, consumer and trade marketing efforts for the entire Naturipe portfolio of products. Previously, Arias was vice president of marketing for Dole Fresh Vegetables and Berries.

Mission Produce, Oxnard, Calif.
Stephen Fink was promoted to director of sales planning, responsible for working with sales, operations and sourcing teams on overall demand management and managing the company’s short- and intermediate-term sales planning activities. He will also focus on ensuring optimal inventory levels at Mission’s nine North American distribution centers. Fink has been with Mission Produce for the past five years, most recently as a sales representative, after previously serving as an inventory analyst.

Essendant Inc., Deerfield, Ill.
Richard Phillips, group president of industrial, was appointed interim president and CEO, effective immediately, succeeding Robert Aiken, Jr., who resigned to pursue an opportunity outside the company. Phillips joined Essendant in 2013 as president of online and new channels. He was named president, ORS Nasco in November 2015, and his most recent position in August 2016, when he added responsibility for Essendant's automotive and e-commerce businesses. Prior to joining Essendant, Phillips spent 14 years at McKinsey & Co., where he was elected partner in 2005 and worked across industry sectors, with a functional emphasis in strategy, commercial performance and operations. He previously spent six years at Baxter Healthcare in various finance and sales roles. 

FirstFruits Marketing, Yakima, Wash.
Joe Vargas was named new marketing coordinator, effective May 15. Vargas maintains 10 years of experience in sales-focused customer service and a diverse background in agriculture, foodservice, sales and account management.

CarbAmericas, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Darrell Genthner joined as a strategic mango sales manager, responsible for growing the category and serving as a consultant and category management advisor to all customers. Genthner maintains over 40 years of produce experience. He began his career as a produce field merchandiser for A&P, and later held positions at Shop Rite/Big V and Farm Fresh. He later returned to A&P as the director of fresh/sales category management. Most recently, Genthner was the market and business development director at Noble Worldwide Citrus.

Sargento Foods Inc., Plymouth, Wis.
Kevin “Michael” Roslen became associate marketing manager-shreds in the consumer products division, responsible for the development and execution of marketing plans for the shredded cheese business as well as helping build the Sargento brand. Roslen most recently served as an associate brand manager at Anheuser-Busch InBev, where he was responsible for brand building, consumer marketing program development and strategic analysis.

The Honey Baked Ham Co., LLC, Atlanta
Jo Ann Herold was named new chief marketing officer, effective June 12, responsible for leading strategic marketing directing development and execution for retail, franchise and e-commerce. She will also look to define the lunch and catering category for the brand, and work cross-functionally across multiple segments of the business to ensure profitable growth. Herold returns after previously working with the brand for 16 years. Previously, she served as chief marketing officer at Interface, Inc. & FLOR; interim chief marketing officer at Tropical Smoothie Café & Asian Tin Drum Kitchen; and vice president of brand strategy and communications at Arby's Restaurant Group. She also consulted for Intercontinental Hotels after leading strategic marketing for HoneyBaked Ham.

JBS S.A., Brazil
Denilson Molina
was elected director of the company, taking over for Wesley Mendonça Batista, who announced his resignation as a director, effective immediately. Molina is currently the chief financial officer of JBS USA Food Co. Previously, he spent 20 years at Banco do Brasil, where he held several executive positions leading projects and transactions in the corporate, commercial wholesale and retail sectors.

George Weston Ltd., Canada
Effective Jan. 1, 2018, Richard Dufresne will become president, retaining his current CFO responsibilities. As part of this transition, Darren Myers will join Loblaw on Sept. 1 as executive vice president, finance, and on Jan. 1, 2018, he will be appointed chief financial officer, Loblaw Cos. Ltd. Dufresne joined George Weston in 2012 and Loblaw in 2014, holding parallel responsibilities as CFO at both companies. This followed prior experience as chief financial officer at a large food distributor and a career in investment banking. Myers comes from Celestica, where he was most recently executive vice president and CFO, building on prior finance roles in the organization, and with Bell Canada and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Hostess Brands, LLC, Kansas City, Mo.
Andrew Jacobs was promoted to executive vice president and chief commercial officer, leading all commercial activities for the company. Previously, Jacobs was senior vice president and chief customer office at Hostess Brands, and prior to that, he served as senior vice president of strategic channels.

Campbell Soup Co., Camden, N.J.
Bob Furbee became senior vice president, global supply chain, effective June 1, responsible for creating an integrated global supply chain organization designed to deliver new capabilities and efficiencies to drive growth. In his most recent role as senior vice president, supply chain, Americas simple meals and beverages, Furbee oversaw all facets of the division’s supply chain organization, operations quality, safety, engineering and environmental activities. Furbee was also responsible for manufacturing, distribution logistics, procurement and customer service for the Americas division. Furbee joined Campbell in 1984, and has held various roles of increasing responsibility across manufacturing, operations and quality. Jim Sterbenz will assume the role of senior vice president, U.S. sales, effective June 15, tasked with creating a single, integrated U.S. sales organization for retail sales across all of Campbell’s U.S. business units — Americas simple meals and beverages, U.S. biscuits and bakery and Campbell Fresh. Sterbenz will also be responsible for driving sales capability, customer focus and joint business planning excellence and lead industry affairs. In his most recent role as senior vice president, U.S. retail sales, Sterbenz was responsible for sales strategy and execution for Campbell’s Americas simple meals and beverages division. Sterbenz joined Campbell in 2006. Lastly, Emily Waldorf was promoted to vice president, corporate strategy, effective June 15. Waldorf will direct enterprise strategy development, planning and measurement, manage key initiatives and develop comprehensive external development strategies. Waldorf joined Campbell in 2012 as director-corporate development, responsible for business development and merger and acquisition activity, primarily for Campbell’s North American businesses. In this role, she helped lead acquisitions in the health and well-being space, including Bolthouse Farms and Plum Organics, as well as the sale of Campbell’s European simple meals business. She served as vice president and chief of staff-office of the CEO from 2013-2014. Previously, Waldorf held corporate development roles at Discovery Communications and AT&T Corp., and served as a special advisor at the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Ahold USA, Carlisle, Pa.
Nick Bertram, senior vice president of merchandising, will be appointed as the new GIANT/MARTIN’S president in January 2018, taking over for Tom Lenkevich, who has been GIANT/MARTIN’S president since 2014. Lenkevich is retiring at the end of the year. Bertram maintains more than 20 years of retail experience, including several years at Ahold USA, which he joined in 2013. Prior to Ahold USA, Bertram oversaw store operations for Jewel-Osco across Illinois, Indiana and Iowa. In addition, Bertram previously served as senior vice president for Supervalu, and held other store operations positions of progressing responsibility with Walmart in Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania.


Papa Murphy's Holdings, Inc., Vancouver, Wash
Industry veteran Weldon Spangler was named chief executive officer and director, effective July 17. Jean Birch, interim chief executive officer, will remain as chair of the board of directors. Spangler joins Papa Murphy's after spending seven years with Dunkin' Brands Group, having most recently served as senior vice president, Baskin-Robbins U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico, where he had complete oversight of the brand. Prior to this role, Spangler spent five years working on the Dunkin' Donuts U.S. and Canada business, first as a regional vice president and then as vice president of operations. During his time at Dunkin Brands, Spangler worked closely with franchisee leaders and played an integral part in the launch of several company initiatives. Prior to Dunkin Brands, Weldon held significant leadership roles at Starbucks Corp. and YUM Brands. Meanwhile, chief financial officer Mark Hutchens was promoted to executive vice president, and will retain his CFO title.

Noodles & Co., Roomfield, Colo.
Dave Boennighausen was promoted to chief executive officer, effective immediately. Boennighausen has served as the company's interim CEO since July 2016 and as chief financial officer since July 2012.  He joined the company's board of directors in August 2015. Boennighausen has held various roles since joining Noodles & Co. in 2004, including vice president of finance and executive vice president of finance. Additionally, Paul Murphy was appointed executive chairman, effective July 10, taking over for Robert Hartnett, who will step down as chairman of the company's board. Murphy currently serves as chief executive officer of Del Taco Restaurants, Inc., a position he’s held since February 2009. He resigned from this position, effective July 7, to permanently relocate to Denver, Colo. He held various roles with Einstein Noah Restaurant Group from 1996-2008, including president and CEO from 2003-2009. Also, Sue Daggett was named interim chief financial officer. Daggett has served as the company's vice president of finance since August 2016, and previously served as president of Smiling Moose Deli Franchise Co., as well as in various executive positions at Einstein Noah Restaurant Group.


Vulcan, Troy, Ohio
Kimberly Robinette joined as new business development manager, tasked with overseeing the sales and marketing of Vulcan’s steam cooking equipment. A certified foodservice professional and a ServSafe food protection manager, Robinette brings a wealth of foodservice equipment sales experience. Previously, she was the corporate manager for equipment and non-food items at Reinhart Foodservice. Prior to Reinhart, Robinette was regional sales manager for US Foods after earning multiple promotions from roles in accounting, purchasing and an equipment and supplies specialist.

Bunting Magnetics Co., Newton, Kan.
Carlos Chamorro, Jr. and Nolan Lamb were appointed new sales representatives. Chamorro will manage the sales growth in Eastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and parts of Virginia and West Virginia, while Lamb will support customers in Southern California, Southern Nevada (including Las Vegas) and Arizona. Both have garnered a decade of territory sales experience in business-to-business manufacturing, including supporting distributors, OEMs and end-users alike. Prior to joining Bunting Magnetics, Chamorro was Eastern regional sales manager for CECO Environmental Corp., while Lamb was key account manager for Southco Inc.

Greenyard Logistics, Belgium
Steve Marinello was hired as vice president of the Northeast U.S. operations. Marinello joined the company in May during the final phase of construction of its new 152,200-square-foot, state-of-the-art packing and cold storage facility in Swedesboro, N.J. John Garret, general manager, will continue to handle the day-to-day operations while Marinello will focus on business development. Marinello maintains 30 years’ of experience in the fresh produce industry, having worked in various sectors, including facility management, imports, foodservice and sales and marketing. Previously, he was vice president of fresh produce for Flagler Global Logistics, and before that, director of imports for Seald Sweet International.

Birko, Henderson, Colo.
John Flynn joined as new vice president of sales, charged with leading the company’s chemical sales division, driving strategy and performance and directing a team of technical managers and technical sales representatives. Birko maintains more than 25 years of senior leadership experience in sales and marketing for the protein and further processing industries. Most recently, he was vice president of beef sales and marketing at JBS, where he developed revenue-generating strategies and played a key role in helping the company navigate through challenging market conditions. Prior to JBS, he was vice president of beef sales at Cargill, and earlier, a regional sales manager at Johnsonville Sausage. Flynn was a member of the Colorado Beef Council’s board of directors, a role he held from 2012-2016, and sits on the board of the Luca John Foundation.

Johnson Controls, Milwaukee, Wis.
Lynn Minella was appointed vice president, chief human resources officer, effective June 14, succeeding Simon Davis, who is leaving the company to pursue other opportunities. Minella most recently served as group human resources director at BAE Systems Plc, where she was a member of the executive committee. Prior to BAE Systems, she was senior vice president of human resources and communications at Air Products & Chemicals. Earlier in her career, she held a variety of human resources leadership roles at IBM. Meanwhile, W. Roy Dunbar was elected to serve as a director, effective immediately. Dunbar is founder and CEO of private companies focused on renewable energy and real estate development. Previously, he served as chairman and CEO of Network Solutions, which was subsequently acquired by Dunbar also was president of global technology and operations at MasterCard, and spent over a decade at Eli Lilly, where he served as president intercontinental region and chief information officer.

Choptank Transport, Preston, Md.
Marcia Wood was promoted to chief financial officer. Previously, she served as Choptank’s vice president of finance, where she helped the company grow to five regional locations handling over 150,000 shipments per year with approximately 300 employees. Wood is also a licensed certified public accountant and a designated chartered global management accountant. 

The Opus Group, Minnetonka, Minn.
Kelli Justesen was promoted to vice president, human resources. Justesen joined Opus’ human resources team six years ago, bringing with her extensive experience and knowledge in human resources in the design-build industry. In March 2016, she was promoted to director of human resources, where she created a business partner structure to better serve the businesses in The Opus Group, spearheaded learning and development efforts, built a program that supports the development of future leaders, worked to help ensure a safe and respectful workplace, rolled out new benefits and provided input and insights to the executive leadership team.

tna, Dallas, Texas
Shuntaro Yamasaki
, who recently joined the business as general manager - tna Japan k.k., will head up the company’s new office in Japan. Yamasaki will be instrumental in supporting local food manufacturers with tna’s vast array of start-to-finish food processing solutions. Yamasaki brings with him over eight years of experience in the packaging and processing industry, having started his career in the vertical form-fill-seal market.

Oakland Invicta Ltd., UK
Robert Hardy, former director of P&O Ferries and EurotunnelPlus, joined as operations director. Hardy has spent the last 5 years developing and running the customs clearance and truckstop facility at the Port of Dover, and has worked closely with the leading government agencies involved with international trade, including Border Force, DEFRA, Environment Agency and FSA.