MHI, Charlotte, N.C.

Chris Becker, president of G.W. Becker, Inc., and Eddie Murphy, owner/president of SpaceGuard Products, Inc., were elected to the roundtable advisory committee, effective Jan. 1, 2018. Additional members include Kevin Ambrose, chief executive officer, Wynright/Daifuku; Steve Diebold, president, WireCrafters, LLC; Bill Ferrell, CICMHE liaison, Clemson University; Sal Fateen, chief executive officer, Seizmic, Inc.; Rick Fox, president, Fox IV Technologies; Don Frazier, emeritus, Frazier Industrial Co.; John Hill, emeritus, director, St. Onge Co.; Bryan Jensen, vice president, St. Onge Co.; Jeff LeClair, vice president, manufacturing and supply chain, Basin Holdings; Brian McNamara, president and CEO, Southworth International Group, Inc.; Brad Moore, vice president of sales, viastore SYSTEMS Inc.; Dan Quinn, emeritus, HAMACO Industries; Brian Reh,  president and CEO, Gorbel Inc.; Shana Relle, YPN liaison, marketing and operations, Intralox, LLC; Pat Sedlak, principal, Sedlak Management Consultants; Clark Skeen, president, CubiScan; and Jim Vandegrift, president, R&M Materials Handling, Inc. Meanwhile, Kevin O’Neill, president of Steele Solutions, was elected MHI vice president, while Gregg Goodner, board member, Hytrol Conveyor Co., Inc., will be MHI chairman, and Brett Wood, president and CEO, Toyota Material Handling, North America, as MHI president. Additional members of the 2018 MHI board of governors include Jay Anderson, president, Steel King Industries, Inc.; Steve Buccella, vice president corporate sales and business development, Dematic Corp.; Bryan Carey, president, Starrco Co., Inc.; Brian Cohen, chief executive, Hanel Storage Systems; David Lippert, president, Hamilton Caster and Mfg. Co.; John Paxton, vice president and general manager, Demag Cranes & Components; George Prest, chief executive officer, MHI; E. Larry Strayhorn, president, WEPCO, Inc.; Colin Wilson, president and CEO, Hyster-Yale Group; Dave Young, president, EGA Products, Inc.; and Arthur Stroyd, Jr., partner, Del Sole Cavanaugh Stroyd, LLC as general counsel.

The Fresh Produce Association of the Americas (FPAA), Nogales, Ariz.
Erika Dominguez was selected as the new policy analyst/communications coordinator, responsible for coordinating FPAA’s communications activities, including outreach to reporters, overseeing the website and social media and more. She will also focus on some specific policy issues that the FPAA monitors on behalf of the members. Previously, Dominguez was FPAA’s membership programs coordinator, and has helped the FPAA with specific projects related to the Unisource utility rate case.

Organic Trade Association (OTA), Baltimore, Md.
Kim Dietz, senior manager, environmental, natural and organic policy of The J.M. Smucker Co., was tapped as president of the board of directors, succeeding Melissa Hughes, who served as president since 2014. Dietz was first appointed as an OTA director in 2014 for a 3-year term, and served as vice president of the board since 2016. Other new members include Britt Lundgren, director of organic and sustainable agriculture at Stonyfield Farm, and Mark Squire, owner of two Good Earth Natural Food stores. The board also named Bob Kaake, director of innovation, technology and quality at Annie's Inc., and Mike Menes, vice president, food safety and technology of True Organic Products. Completing the board are Perry Clutts, owner of Pleasantview Farm; Doug Crabtree, farmer at Vilicus Farms; David Lively, marketing director at Organically Grown Co.; Kelly Shea, vice president of trade relations for DanoneWave; and Leslie Zuck, executive director of Pennsylvania Certified Organic. Retiring from the board are Melody Meyer, vice president of policy and industry relations of UNFI; Tony Bedard, chief executive officer of Frontier Natural Products Co-op; Sarah Bird, founder and CEO of Bhakti Chai; and Jesse Laflamme, chief executive officer of Pete and Gerry's Organics.


The Fresh Market, Inc., Greensboro, N.C.
Larry Appel was appointed president and CEO, effective immediately. Appel maintains nearly 30 years of experience in retail, legal and corporate strategy. From 2002-2012, Appel served at Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc. in a variety of senior leadership roles, including chief operations officer, chief human resources officer, head of strategy and chief legal officer. After leaving Winn-Dixie, Appel served as chief executive officer of Skeeter Snacks, LLC. From 1997-2002, Appel was senior vice president of legal at The Home Depot, Inc. Meanwhile, Brian Nicholson, the company’s chief financial officer who served as the company’s interim CEO, will remain in his role as CFO.

My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream, Los Angeles
Craig Berger was appointed chief executive officer. Berger maintains over 25 years of experience in the food sector, most recently serving as the company's chief financial officer. Previous to that, he spent 20 years at McCormick & Co., Inc., progressing through the finance function, where he was chief financial officer at Mojave Foods Corp., McCormick Fresh Herbs and Tubed Products. More recently, Berger was chief financial officer at ACTIVATE Drinks and Fuji Food Products. Berger brings a wealth of operational expertise to the position, and since joining the company in March 2016, has been an integral part of launching the My/Mo Mochi Ice Cream brand.

The Procacci Cos., Philadelphia
Joseph M. Procacci was named chief executive officer of Procacci Holdings LLC, taking over for Joseph G. Procacci, who is stepping down as CEO after nearly 70 years with the company and transitioning to the role of CEO emeritus. J.M. began his career in Produce at the age of 10, working alongside his father and learning Procacci Brothers’ business operations from the ground up. He joined the company full-time in 1974, making immediate contributions to Procacci’s tomato repack operations and spearheading improvements in labor efficiency, quality assurance and food safety. J.M. then led Procacci’s tomato sales desk, where he developed supplier networks and capitalized on logistical opportunities in the distribution network to land major foodservice and retail accounts. J.M. also held a central role in human resources functions, including talent acquisition, employee healthcare and labor relations. He most recently served as chief operating officer of Procacci Brothers Sales Corp. and president of Santa Sweets Inc., where he centralized strategic production planning, created higher yielding and disease-resistant varieties and oversaw significant advancements to the company’s farming operations in Mexico, including the development of greenhouse operations.

Hain Celestial Group, Inc., Lake Success, N.Y.
Steven Liedtke was named chief information officer, effective Sept. 11, responsible for overseeing the information technology strategy and all related departmental operations and initiatives to support the company's enterprise goals. Liedtke spent the last 10 years with The WhiteWave Foods Co. and its affiliated entities, most recently as chief information officer, a position he held for five years, where he was responsible for the enterprise information technology organization, including management, infrastructure, security and controls, solution delivery, master data management and business integration. He also played an instrumental role in the commercial separation of WhiteWave Foods from Dean Foods and its initial public offering, as well as the eventual integration with Group Danone. During his tenure at WhiteWave Foods, Liedtke also conducted all aspects of SAP ERP implementation and transformation, launched a digital strategy framework to improve consumer brand experience and customer experience and implemented a balanced and scalable IT security program. Previously, Liedtke was segment CIOr at Dean Foods, working in the WhiteWave, Morningstar and Alpro divisions. Prior to joining Dean Foods, he spent over 10 years working in leadership capacities in foodservice and high-tech industries.



Universal Logic Inc., Nashville, Tenn.

Dr. Goutham Mallapragada was named chief technology officer, responsible for overseeing the expansion of the company’s Neocortex artificial intelligence platform, including engineering, research and development, and providing technical leadership for the software development team. Previously, he was chief scientist and machine learning scientist, where he was instrumental in developing the Neocortex and Spatial Vision software products into a reliable platform. Mallapragada maintains expertise in artificial intelligence, machine learning, computer vision and robotics, and was a member of Penn State’s Networked Robotics and Sensor Intelligence laboratory.

Butler Automatic, Middleborough, Mass.
Industry veteran Phil Johnson joined as vice president sales and marketing, responsible for leading the company’s North America and European-based sales teams. He maintains 26 years of experience in innovation and value-added packaging equipment solutions. Johnson has held senior sales, product and market development posts for German, French and U.S. packaging equipment companies serving international beverage, food, pharmaceutical and consumer goods manufacturers. In North America, Lou Pelnar will serve as sales director East, responsible for regional and key market segments and OEM machine builder partners in the eastern and central regions of the United States and Canada. Pelnar brings several years of experience in both automatic splicing and controls solutions for various packaging applications in the packaging, converting, dairy, food and pharmaceutical sectors. Mark Austin was tapped sales director West, where he will focus on providing sales and application support to customers in the western United States and Canada. Austin maintains many years of experience in the packaging industry, with an extensive background in both technical and sales roles for packaging equipment, including vertical form-fill-seal (VFFS) and horizontal form-fill-seal machine (HFFS) equipment, as well as labeling, cartoning, case packing and numerous other technologies. Loris Médart was appointed sales director EMEA, where he will build close partnerships with brand owners focused on improving OEE on their packaging lines, as well as OEM machine builders for VFFS, HFFS, flow wrap, bag making and printing applications. Médart joined Butler Automatic four years ago as UK sales manager, and maintains a deep understanding of how Butler Automatic solutions can be used across a broad spectrum of industries in the EMEA countries. For more than 10 years, he has held senior sales and business development positions for a market leader in the adhesives application sector. Also, David Steines will now serve as technical sales manager Europe, where he will focus primarily on Germany, Benelux, Austria, Switzerland and key OEM machine builder customers. Steines has been in the packaging industry for more than 20 years. Prior to joining the sales team, he gained international experience as a field service engineer, machine designer and service manager.

Coveris Holdings, Chicago
Dimitri Panayotopoulos
was appointed chairman and interim CEO, effective immediately, taking over for Dave Mezzanotte, who announced his retirement. Panayotopoulos spent 37 years with Procter & Gamble (P&G), where he led multiple businesses and served as vice chairman. During his time at P&G, Panayotopoulos gained vast knowledge of best business practices and fast-moving consumer goods across multiple geographies such as the UK, Switzerland, Germany, Egypt, China and the United States.

Global ID Group, Fairfield, Iowa
Brad Riemenapp was appointed chief executive officer, succeeding Ken Ross, who is stepping into a strategic advisory role after 11 years of service as CEO. Riemenapp previously served as global vice president and general manager of Covance, Inc.’s food solutions division, where he was responsible for all operational and commercial aspects of the business globally, including analytical testing services in inorganic chemistry, proximate/lipids chemistry, vitamin chemistry, microvitamin chemistry, microbiology, food packaging, pesticides, product development and food consulting services. Riemenapp joined Covance in 2010 as vice president of operations, where he was responsible for driving cultural change, making the food solutions business more customer-centric and improving its processes. Prior to joining Covance, Riemenapp spent 13 years at Kimberly Clark Corp. 

ITS Logistics, Reno, Nev.
Jim Dingman
was named president of fleet operations. Dingman maintains more than 25 years of experience in the truckload space. For instance, he started his career in operations at Crete Carrier, and moved on to sales in 1999. He joined Gordon Trucking in 2002 as director of regional sales, and made several moves within the organization, ending his tenure as area vice president of operations. In 2016, Dingman joined Interstate Distributor as Western regional vice president.