WASHINGTON, Jan. 25, 2016 – Connie Tipton, president and CEO of the International Dairy Foods Association since January 2004, announced today at IDFA’s annual Dairy Forum in Phoenix that she will step down at the end of the year.
Tipton succeeded her late husband, Linwood “Tip” Tipton after his retirement as head of the trade association of dairy manufacturing and marketing industries and suppliers. Together they substantially enhanced the association’s membership and influence in Washington by consolidating its previously separate components, the Milk Industry Foundation (MIF), International Ice Cream Association (IICA) and National Cheese Institute (NCI) in the 1980s.
“It’s time for that change,” she said, earning a standing ovation from the Dairy Forum audience. “Just to add a point, with my late husband Tip it’s been a Tipton dynasty for over 50 years. It’s been a great thing.” She said she has not decided future plans but joked, “I may call up John Boehner and we’ll open a lobbying shop.” The former Speaker of the House was a strong ally of IDFA on legislative issues for many years.
Connie Tipton joined the joint MIF-IICA staff as an administrator in 1981 and assumed increasingly important leadership roles in the association’s legislative and international affairs, economic analysis, public relations, marketing, education and training and trade shows.
According to the IDFA website, she helped launch the annual Capitol Hill Ice Cream Party and encouraged legislation that created the famous “Milk Mustache” campaign.
IDFA noted that Tipton is a board member of the National Association of Manufacturers’ Council of Manufacturing Associations, U.S. Capitol Historical Society, Sewell-Belmont Museum & House, Bryce Harlow Foundation, Capitol Hill Day School and BIPAC, which it describes as “a broad business-oriented political activation organization.” She is also past chair of the Bryce Harlow Foundation Board, a group that provides scholarships and leadership in professional advocacy.
In 2009, Tipton was honored by Association Trends magazine as the Association Executive of the Year and was selected by Capitol Hill publications as one of the top trade association lobbyists in 2002. In September of 2011, Tipton was selected as a “Top Association CEO” by CEO Update.”
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