Sunkist Growers has brought on Anne Goltz as senior manager of business development. Most recently, Goltz  was in charge of the Wonderful Citrus foodservice program, a position she has been in for the last 14 years. Before that, she was in sales at Bee Sweet Citrus and was a buyer at Kroger.

Ippolito International recently added Ty Schurman and Kyle Narciso to its sales team, located in Salinas, Calif. Schurman brings 30 years of experience in the produce industry and most recently was with Ocean Mist in Castroville, Calif. Narciso began his produce career on the shipping dock at Mann Packing, and worked his way into a role within the sales department. In that position, he managed an array of retail and foodservice customers, and worked as a commodity manager.

Eric Kalasz has joined the FMC North America leadership team as the U.S. marketing director. He will also lead product strategy, product planning and pricing stewardship for the company. Kalasz previously worked for the BASF Corporation as the brand manager for the BASF U.S. crop division. He focused heavily on market introductions for new products, strategic planning for active ingredients and establishing brand awareness. He has also held positions in marketing, strategic account management and sales for companies such as Dow AgroSciences and Bayer.

AC Brands hired Evan Pence to serve as the new vice president of international procurement. Pence previously worked for Dole Diversified as the director of sourcing and before that was the director of purchasing for Berry Fresh Produce LLC and North American blueberry operations manager for California Giant.

Annette Jones

Annette Jones

Mission Produce has promoted Stephen Fink to vice president of North American Sales. Fink most recently served as senior director of sales and brings over eight years of experience in avocado sales.

Brian Faseler has joined the sales team at Legend Produce as a sales associate. He joins the company after working 12 years at Custom Pak, a Lipman Family Farms division. Brian Faseler returns to Legend Produce in sales.

The Fresh Produce Association of the Americas has elevated Georgina Felix to director of operations and foreign affairs and Emmis Yubeta to director of membership and events. Felix has been with the association for more than 14 years and Emmis joined the group in 2015.

At the virtual annual meeting of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture, Dr. Annette Jones, California State Veterinarian at the California Department of Food and Agriculture, was awarded the 2020 NASDA James A. Graham Award. The award recognizes an individual for outstanding work in providing service to agricultural producers. Jones was chosen for her leadership and contributions to the eradication efforts in the 2018-2020 virulent Newcastle Disease (VND) Incident in Southern California, and the management of additional animal diseases.

Agricultural economist Spiro Stefanou has been selected to serve as the new administrator of USDA’s Economic Research Service. For the past five years, Stefanou has taught economics at the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agriculture. Before that, he served 30 years as an agricultural economics professor at Penn State University. To read more on Stefanou’s appointment, click here.

Spiro Stefanou

Spiro Stefanou

USDA has appointed 10 new members to the National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection (NACMPI) and one new member to the National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMCF). The new NACMPI members appointed to serve two-year terms are as follows: Jimmy Avery, Mississippi State University; William Battle, Pride of the Pond and Battle Fish North; Tina Conklin, Michigan State University; Patricia Ann Curtis, North Carolina State University; Jennifer Eberly, Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry; Casey Lynn Gallimore, North American Meat Institute; Joseph Jay Harris, Southwest Meat Association; Curtis Lynn Knipe, Ohio State University; Byron Williams, Mississippi State University; and Sherri Williams, JBS USA, LLC. Shannara Lynn with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has been added to NACMCF.

Debora Hamernik has joined the National Institute of Food and Agriculture to serve as the division director of the Division of Animal Systems of the Institute of Food Production and Sustainability. Hamernik previously worked at the University of Nebraska, where she served for two years as associate vice chancellor for research in the Office of Research and Economic Development and nine years as associate dean of agricultural research and associate director of the Nebraska Agricultural Experiment station.

Kevin Kramp has been selected to be the Farm Credit Administration's deputy general counsel, a position he was actively serving in since March 1. Kramp joined FCA in 2015 as executive assistant to board member Jeff Hall, and served in that capacity until he was appointed acting deputy general counsel. Before coming to the agency, Kramp worked for many years on Capitol Hill, including serving on the staff of Reps. Jim Nussle, R-Iowa, and Bob Goodlatte, R-Va. In 1996, Kramp joined the staff of the House Agriculture Committee and was named chief counsel in 2003.

Bayer has tapped Sara Boettiger to lead its global Crop Science Public Affairs, Science and Sustainability organization effective Sept. 1. She is responsible for driving the divisional strategy for sustainability, stakeholder engagement and public affairs. Boettiger joins Bayer from McKinsey & Company, where she was a senior adviser and co-leader of the McKinsey Center for Agricultural Transformation. In this role, she focused on issues in agriculture, climate change, food security and nutrition to help advise companies and governments around the world. Before that, she served as the deputy director at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Paul Schlegel, vice president of public policy for the American Farm Bureau Federation, will be retiring at the end of October. Schlegel joined AFBF in 2005 as director of public policy and has handled a variety of issues. Before joining AFBF, Schlegel served for more than 20 years in senior staff positions in the House of Representatives for several members of Congress. In retirement, Schlegel hopes to volunteer in his community, pursue personal interests and travel internationally when conditions allow.

Paul Schlegel

Paul Schlegel

Jared Henderson has been promoted to deputy chief of staff for Rep. TJ Cox, D-Calif. Henderson was the legislative director for Cox and handled the portfolio for agriculture and food, labor and employment, foreign trade, and international affairs.

PepsiCo, Inc. has hired Roberto Azevêdo, formerly the director-general of the World Trade Organization, for the newly created position of executive vice president and chief corporate affairs officer. Azevêdo has been director-general of the WTO since September 2013. From 2008 to 2013 he was Brazil's ambassador to the WTO, and from 2006 to 2008, he was vice minister for economic and technological affairs at the Foreign Ministry in Brasilia, where he was Brazil's chief trade negotiator for the Doha Round and represented Brazil in Mercosur negotiations. PepsiCo has also elevated Jim Andrew to chief sustainability officer, effective Sept. 1. He will succeed Simon Lowden, who has decided to retire after 24 years with the company.

The Cotton Board elected new officers at its 2020 annual meeting. Outgoing Chairman Jeff Posey handed the gavel to newly elected chairman Jimmy Webb, a cotton producer from Leary, Ga. Webb is a past recipient of the Georgia Farmer of the Year award, former chairman of Cotton Council International, and has served as a member on The Cotton Board since 2011. Other elected members include: Sonja Chapman, importer from Boonton, N.J., vice chairman; Mark Nichols, producer from Altus, Okla., secretary; and Akiko Inui, importer from New York City, treasurer.

Todd Hubbs is leaving the University of Illinois and has taken a new role in a senior outlook position at USDA’s Economic Research Service. At the U of I, Hubbs performed outlook analysis and research for commodities of importance to Illinois farmers and wrote the weekly grain price outlook on farmdoc daily.

Larry Schnell, co-owner of Stockmen’s Livestock Exchange, has been installed as president of the Livestock Marketing Association, serving a two-year term. Schnell has been involved in a variety of other organizations including serving as chairman of the North Dakota Beef Council, regional vice president for the Federation of State Beef Councils, president of the North Dakota Auctioneers Association and president of the North Dakota Livestock Marketing Associations.

Nooley Reinheardt, a USDA rural development staffer during the Carter Administration and later a consultant who specialized in rural housing programs, died Aug. 18 at Beaufort Memorial Hospital in Beaufort, S.C., after a brief illness. He was 73. Before becoming assistant to the undersecretary of agriculture for rural development, Reinheardt was assistant vice president for regional and community development at the University of New Mexico, a member of the Bernalillo County Commission in Albuquerque, and associate editor of Golf World magazine. He was a member of the National Democratic Club in Washington. His Nooley Reinheardt & Associates consulting operation was based in Hilton Head Island, S.C.

David Sandretti, director of legislative and public affairs for USDA’s undersecretary for rural development during the Obama Administration, died June 23 at his home in Washington of congestive heart failure. He was 59. He earlier was communications director for the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources and served on the staffs of Senators Russell Feingold of Wisconsin, Ron Wyden of Oregon and Barbara Boxer of California.

Former California Senator Tom Berryhill passed away on Aug. 29 at the age of 67. Berryhill was a farmer and small business owner, representing the 25th Assembly District from 2006-2010 and the 8th Senate District from 2010-2018.

On Aug. 26, Albert Garnica passed away in his home in Yuma, Ariz., after fighting a courageous battle with cancer. He was 57 years old. Garnica was the vice president of agricultural operations at Taylor Farms. He started out as a lettuce cutter and loader and worked in field operations at Taylor Farms before being promoted to iceberg harvest manager. Before joining Taylor Farms in 2004, he worked for Church Brothers, Fresh Co., and Fresh Express.

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