NAMI names new president, AFFI appoints exec for legislative affairs and more
American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI), Arlington, Va.
Matthew Foley was appointed senior director of legislative affairs, effective Aug. 20, tasked with leading the institute’s federal legislative advocacy efforts, overseeing the industry’s political action committee and building grassroots engagement among AFFI membership. Foley most recently served as director of government relations for the National Grocers Association (NGA), and before that, held several managerial positions in the Grocery Manufacturers Association’s industry affairs and federal affairs departments.
NGA Foundation, Arlington, Va.
Amalea Híjar joined as director, effective July 30. Híjar maintains over a decade of experience working at professional societies and trade associations. Previously, she served as interim vice president of operations for Epic PR Group, and has held senior-level positions within professional and trade associations, where she was responsible for building membership groups, creating new products and services and leading membership recruitment, retention and engagement efforts.
Pennsylvania Food Merchants Association (PFMA), Wormleysburg, Pa.
Gary Fechter, senior vice president for Wegmans’ Pennsylvania division, joined the board of directors, taking over for Blaine Forkell. Fechter is responsible for the operations of 16 Wegmans stores across Pennsylvania. He joined Wegmans in 2013, formerly serving as regional vice president for Romano’s Macaroni Grill restaurants. Fechter has held senior multi-unit operations leadership positions spanning 20 years with companies such as Boston Market, Blockbuster Video, Panera Bread and Qdoba Mexican Grill. He also maintains corporate and franchise operations experience with both startups and turnarounds.
The U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Poultry & Eggs (US-RSPE) and the International Poultry Welfare Alliance (IPWA), Tucker, Ga.
Ryan Bennett was selected to lead both organizations as the new executive director, effective Sept. 4, tasked with building membership through recruitment within the shared value chain constituency groups, including production and processing, retail and foodservice, allied industry and research and civil society. He will also be recruiting members and engaging with poultry value chain stakeholders to recruit both U.S. and international companies and individuals for IPWA membership. Bennett previously served as senior director of industry and environmental affairs at the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF), where he managed the National Dairy Farmer's Assuring Responsible Management (FARM) Program, broadening the scope of the FARM Program from an animal care program to become a full-on farm dairy sustainability reporting platform. Under his guidance, the FARM Program became what is said to be the largest on-farm environmental sustainability reporting program. Bennett also ensured broad stakeholder engagement through the program development process by bringing together academics, veterinarians, dairy industry thought leaders, environmental NGOs, farmers and sustainability specialists. Before working on the FARM Program, Bennett led the NMPF’s government relations portfolio pertaining to environment, conservation and renewable energy, where he brought diverse stakeholders together to find new ways to finance on-farm conservation projects. Bennett also previously worked at the National Grain and Feed Association, where he managed issues related to conservation and transportation in the grain trading industry.
North American Meat Institute (NAMI), Washington, D.C.
Julie Anna Potts was named president and CEO, effective Sept. 24, succeeding Barry Carpenter, who is retiring from his president and CEO role. An agriculture veteran, Potts has served as executive vice president and treasurer for the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) since 2011, where she implemented all programs and activities for the organization, and coordinated between AFBF and its affiliated companies. Potts first joined AFBF in 2004, serving as general counsel until 2009. In late 2009, she was named chief counsel of the Senate Agriculture Committee, serving under then-chairman Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas. Earlier in her career, Potts was an associate in the environmental law groups of Mayer Brown, LLP and Sonnenschein, Nath & Rosenthal. She also clerked for U.S. Magistrate Judge John Facciola in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia from 1997-1998.
NSF International, Ann Arbor, Mich.
Karen Kreza was named vice president, global human resources, responsible for organizational development, talent acquisition and development and alignment with the business strategy. Kreza maintains 20 years of human resources experience. Previously, she worked at Honeywell, where she held various roles of increasing responsibility, most recently as global senior human resources director. She also worked at Chrysler LLC, providing leadership in all aspects of human resources, and at Robert Bosch LLC, where she developed a trainee program and a human resources web-marketing strategy, maximizing university relationships and increasing candidate flow.
Raley’s, West Sacramento, Calif.
Yvette Waters was hired to a newly created position of nutrition strategist and brand influencer, tasked with driving nutrition strategy for all brands and working alongside the merchant team to bring high-quality, healthy products into stores. Waters will also support team member education on products and nutritional content, and develop customer education pieces, attend community events and make PR appearances. Waters was first hired by Raley’s to support the development of Market 5-ONE-5. She also led the nutrition strategy, developed the category standards and curated the product assortment. Previously, Waters was a registered dietitian for the University of Nevada, a dietitian for the Nevada Diabetes Association and an intern and nutrition expert for a medical hospital.
Farm Fresh Direct (FFD), Monte Vista, Colo.
Matt Glowczewski and Roger Christensen joined in sales management and sales/business development capacities, respectively, bringing a collective 45-years’ experience in potato sales and production. Glowczewski maintains 33 years’ produce industry experience, including 20-plus years working in potatoes sold throughout North American retail, distributor and foodservice channels. He most recently worked as a sales account manager for RPE, and prior to that, as a sales rep at Canon Potato Co. and working in the warehouse of Andrews Produce (now Andrews Food Service). Christensen delivers 32 years of produce experience, including 22 in potato sales and production. He currently operates Maverick Potato Co., which he will continue doing alongside his FFD responsibilities. Before that, he worked in general management and sales at Skyline Potato, and before that, spent 10 years as a produce broker for Papazian Worldwide Distributing Inc.
W&W Dairy, Monroe, Wis.
Franz Hofmeister was named president and CEO, immediately following the acquisition by Main Street Capital Holdings, LLC. Hofmeister maintains over 35 years of experience in the perishable foods and consumer packaged goods industry. He has been a Main Street Operating Partner since the late 1990s, and has served as president and CEO of Lloyd’s Barbeque and Wisconsin Cheese Group.
Pete’s Living Greens, Carpinteria, Calif.
Brian Cook was named president. Cook has served as interim president since October, improving both top- and bottom-line results while helping the company execute its rebrand. He joined the team as vice president of sales in February 2016. Prior to joining Pete’s Living Greens, Cook served as director of sales and marketing at San Miguel Produce, and maintains over 19 years’ experience in sales and management, retail merchandising and other various produce-related positions.
F.A.B., Inc. (Frosty Acres Brands), Alpharetta, Ga.
Steve Roach was named new senior vice president, chief information officer, effective Aug. 20, responsible for IT operations and the ongoing development of technology systems. Roach has served the last 9 years in progressive management and leadership roles with Focus Brands, most recently as vice president IT and CISO.
Shari's Restaurants, Portland, Ore.
Joan Hansen was named corporate director of marketing, responsible for overseeing the promotional and marketing efforts for Shari's and its Coco's Restaurants and Bakeries and Carrows Restaurants. Hansen is a restaurant professional with more than 25 years of progressive operations and marketing experience. Her restaurant background includes long-term stints at Mimi's Café, BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse, and most recently, Marie Callender's Restaurant & Bakery. She maintains experience in taking on large-scale initiatives, including curbside take-out, online menu versioning, national sponsorships, comprehensive local restaurant marketing programs and check-boosting menu redesign projects from concept to launch.
The Greenbrier Cos., Inc., Lake Oswego, Ore.
Rick Turner, senior vice president of wheels and parts at Greenbrier Rail Services, will manage the company’s repair shops, after Greenbrier and Watco discontinued their GBW Railcar Services (GBW) railcar repair joint venture. Turner has been a leader in the railcar aftermarket business for nearly 25 years, with primary responsibility for Greenbrier's 12 wheel shops and parts businesses. Turner has served on the board of directors of GBW since its formation.
Primex Design & Fabrication (PD&F) (formerly Woodruff Corp.), Richmond, Ind.
Linda Balwinski was named territory business manager for the Great Lakes region, including Ohio, Michigan and Indiana. Balwinski maintains an extensive background in design, production and marketing. She maintains over 10 years’ experience in protective packaging, work-in-process systems and factory-to-factory shipping solutions. Previously, she worked with several manufacturers of protective packaging, interior dunnage and shipping containers.
TECSYS Inc., Canada
Jeromie Atkinson was named senior director, supply chain, tasked with leading TECSYS' supply chain product marketing team across verticals. Atkinson maintains more than two decades of strategic customer-focused experience and extensive knowledge of the healthcare supply chain, both as an internal transformation agent and external business partner. Previously, Atkinson helped transform UPMC best practices into commercially viable solutions through its subsidiary, Pensiamo. Prior to this, he helped usher in multiple supply chain transformation initiatives at Intermountain Healthcare.
Steven Leavengood joined as new vice president sales and service U.S., effective July 30. Leavengood worked for over 20 years in the material handling, automation and intralogistics fields, with a focus on sales management, business development and strategy for leading manufacturers and integrators such as Swisslog, Telelift and Knapp. Leavengood has also lived overseas, including seven years in Dubai as Swisslog’s managing director for the Middle East and Africa. He maintains broad experience in automation, and worked with a special focus on major healthcare and pharma clients worldwide.
Elkhart Plastics Inc. (EPI), Elkhart, Ind.
Hilary Welter was named to the newly created position of marketing manager. Welter has served as marketing and research coordinator for the North American Retail Hardware Association for four years, where she participated in a work and travel program called Remote Year, during which she traveled around the world to 12 cities in 12 months with a group of 70 peers while working remotely. Her responsibilities include overseeing marketing efforts for EPI and its KONG Coolers product line, including strategic initiatives, brand management and corporate identity. Welter maintains more than five years of experience creating and directing marketing campaigns, including social media, email and B2B initiatives. Welter joined EPI in June 1990.
Cloverleaf Cold Storage, Sioux City, Iowa
Curtis Mastbergen was promoted to president. Mastbergen, who grew up on a farm in Iowa, currently serves as vice president of operations, and previously served as vice president of finance and administration, where he was instrumental in selecting and deploying an enterprise‐wide warehouse management system. Prior to joining Cloverleaf in 2002, he was president of Farmers and Merchants Bank. Meanwhile, Matthew Bremer joined in the newly created position of chief financial officer. Bremer maintains a wealth of experience, having worked with both public and private companies. Previously, he spent most of his career working in the food production and processing industry, including positions at Del Monte Foods, The Bama Cos., Nash Finch, Gold ‘N Plump Poultry and Christensen Farms. He specializes in strategic planning, as well as mergers and acquisitions. Ken Smith will join as vice president of operations. Smith previously served as vice president of transportation and warehousing for ConAgra Foods, with responsibility for the distribution operation functions for the consumers foods businesses. Prior to joining ConAgra, Smith held various supply chain leadership roles with Rich Sea‐Pak, Millard Warehouse, Pepsi Cola and Sara Lee. He has also maintained responsibilities for national distribution programs, as well as end‐to‐end project management for numerous strategic initiatives across supply chain organizations, including mergers and acquisitions, network optimization and startup operations for distribution centers.
Mickey Truck Bodies, High Point, N.C.
David Perry was promoted to the newly created position of director of purchasing and product costing, responsible for the purchasing, cost accounting and product pricing teams. Perry joined the company in 2012 as a senior buyer and advanced to his most recent role of purchasing and materials manager. Perry maintains over 30 years’ experience in purchasing and materials, starting in 1989 as an inventory control analyst. In addition, Larry Henson was promoted to associate cost accounting manager. For the past 5 years, he’s served as associate purchasing manager. Also, Debra DiEdwardo joined as a purchasing agent. DiEdwardo maintains a successful track record in both sales and procurement in aerospace manufacturing. Prior to Mickey, she was supply chain manager with Beta Fueling Systems LLC, where she served as the lead buyer for critical hardware. Before that, DiEdwardo spent 7 years as the strategic lead with Honda Aero, Inc. and technical buyer for the HF120 engine, a GE/Honda joint venture. Lastly, Jim “Jimmy” Hiatt retired after a 32-year career in sales, which began in 1986 as territory sales manager in the former van body division. He was promoted to vice president sales for the van and vending team in 1995, and during his tenure, expanded from its original dry freight line to include refrigerated and full-service vending bodies and moving bodies.
Envision Solar International, Inc., San Diego, Calif.
Bob Schweitzer was named independent member of the board of directors. Schweitzer has served as a director and executive in business and financial organizations for the past 44 years, and has held board positions with five public and four private companies. He is currently chairman of the board at PetMeds, where he also serves as compensation committee chair and on the audit, nominating and investment committees. He is the lead independent board member and audit and compensation committee chair for Blink Charging Inc. and the lead independent board member and audit committee chair for OmniComm Systems. Schweitzer has also held senior executive positions at Shay Investment Services, Equinox Bank, Union Planters Bank, Bank of America, Coopers and Lybrand, First National Bank of Chicago and Wachovia Corp. Schweitzer is a retired US Navy Captain, who held six command assignments and was the FEMA representative for Florida. Previously he was a lieutenant and nuclear plant lead engineer/instructor on the nuclear-powered submarine, USS Lafayette. Since 2012, Schweitzer has served as chief executive officer of RCS Mediation & Consulting Services, where he acts as a certified circuit civil mediator for the Florida Supreme Court as well as a certified FINRA arbitrator, a certified Appellate Court mediator and a mediator for the Office of Financial Regulation for Florida. He is also on the roster of the American Arbitration Association.
10-4 Systems, a Trimble brand, Boulder, Colo.
Joe DeBoth will serve as new vice president and general manager. He maintains over 30 years of financial and consulting experience. Since 2008, DeBoth has served as divisional vice president of finance at Trimble Transportation Enterprise, the umbrella to TMW Systems, ALK Technologies and 10-4 Systems, where he helped scale the company through its double-digit growth and managed finance, business systems and integrations of newly acquired companies. Prior to joining Trimble Transportation Enterprise, DeBoth worked at Deloitte Consulting for 8 years, specializing in large ERP Fortune 1000 implementations and business process strategies, and spent 2 years at Lawson Software, specializing in financial transformations. Before Deloitte, he held various positions as a financial leader within private and publicly traded companies.
SeaCube Container Leasing Ltd., Woodcliff Lake, N.J.
David Doorley was promoted to chief financial officer. Doorley has served as SeaCube’s treasurer and vice president of investor relations since 2010. He started out as a cash manager with the organization in 2000, when the company operated under the name of Carlisle Leasing LLC. Doorley held various roles in treasury before being named vice president, treasurer in 2007, adding investor relations responsibilities in 2010. Before joining SeaCube, Doorley enjoyed a 17-year career in various accounting and treasury functions, including as corporate treasurer for Alstom USA, Inc.
Dorner, Hartland, Wis.
Todd Kaull was named vice president – global operations, responsible for overseeing Dorner’s manufacturing and assembly operations in Hartland; Jülich, Germany; Guadalajara, Mexico; and Penang, Malaysia. Previously, Kaull spent more than 20 years at Alliance Laundry Services, where he most recently served as vice president of global manufacturing. Meanwhile, Randy Meis was named director of operations for Dorner’s Hartland facility.
Port of Long Beach, Long Beach, Calif.
Richard Cameron was named new deputy executive director of planning and development, while Dr. Noel Hacegaba was appointed new deputy executive director of administration and operations. Cameron and Hacegaba have served the port in several capacities for many years, and maintain a comprehensive blend of industry experience and community relationships. Cameron joined the port in 1996 as environmental specialist, and was promoted to manager of environmental planning, where he led the division most directly responsible for the port’s signature environmental program, the Green Port Policy, and the San Pedro Bay Ports Clean Air Action Plan. He was then named director of the newly created division of environmental planning before being appointed acting managing director in 2013 and managing director in January 2014. As managing director, he oversees the Planning and Environmental Affairs Bureau that includes environmental planning, master planning and transportation planning. Hacegaba joined the port in 2010, and is the senior executive responsible for developing and executing business development strategies to drive volume and revenue growth. As managing director of commercial operations and chief commercial officer, Hacegaba also leads the port’s operations, customer service and security functions, and collaborates with customers and industry partners to drive efficiencies and optimize the supply chain. In recent years, Hacegaba led the recovery of its largest terminal following bankruptcy. He also previously served as the port’s acting deputy executive director and COO, where he oversaw the daily business activities of engineering, environmental affairs and planning, finance and administration and trade development and port operations. His first Port responsibility was serving as the Executive Officer to the Board of Harbor Commissioners. Cameron and Hacegaba will succeed Duane Kenagy, who has served as interim deputy executive director since May 2017 and will return to his previous role as capital programs executive, overseeing port capital improvement projects.
Tri-Seal, a Tekni-Plex business, Wayne, Pa.
Brian Jacobi joined as vice president and general manager of the North America operations, responsible for the North America closure liners business. Previously, Jacobi was vice president of sales and marketing for distribution, food and beverage, household and spirits at Berry Global, and held a variety of sales, production and finance roles at Rexam, Graham Packaging and O-I.