The PMA Foundation recognizes industry members, who value our vision, take pride in our work to attract, develop and retain talent and plan for our future by including the PMA Foundation in their estate plans.
- Membership is offered when a contributor lets us know that they have named the PMA Foundation as a benefactor in their will, trust, life insurance, retirement or other estate plans, such as charitable gift annuities. Membership is open to all friends of the PMA Foundation.
Legacy Club Member Benefits Include:
- Being listed “forever” in the Annual Report of Contributors
- Lifetime invitation to the PMA’s President’s Reception at PMA’s Fresh Summit and Foodservice Conference
- Receive special publications/reports on PMA Foundation progress
- Recognition in industry publications when appropriate
- Legacy Club ribbon to be worn at PMA Events
- Recognition on the PMA Foundation Web site
Carole and Dick Spezzano
What roles have you played in the industry?
DS: I spent my career at the retail level and for many years led the Vons Produce and Floral team. I like to think that we did some pretty cool and innovative things both in the fresh produce and floral arenas. During my time at Vons I served on many committees and boards and led PMA in 1993 – 1994 as Chairman of the Board. In 1997, I retired from Vons and opened my consulting business (Spezzano Consulting Service, Inc.) and have been very active both in the production, association and retail side of produce and floral.
For the PMA Foundation, I currently serve as the Chair of the Fundraising Committee and the Chair Elect of the PMA Foundation Board of Directors. I assist this great group of volunteers in raising funds and developing new initiatives that will grow our industry in the ever-evolving fresh produce and floral industry both on the domestic and international fronts. In addition, for over seven years, I have served as a Career Ambassador to university students participating in the Career Pathways program.
Why is it important to leave a legacy?
DS: I believe everyone would like to be remembered in their personal life as a great spouse, parent, neighbor and community member. I also think professionally, people would like to be recognized for what they contribute to their industry.
I have been blessed in my personal life and in my career. It is important to me that my time and monetary contributions help grow the industry by attracting talent that will share my same passion for the industry. In addition, as people – like myself – are rounding third and headed for home in their careers, they can look at how they can do long-term financial planning that includes the PMA Foundation. My wife and I are proud to be in a position to include the PMA Foundation in our gift planning.
Why is it important for our industry to focus on talent?
DS: Our industry is not an industry with a lot of large, publicly-traded companies and on the supply side most of the companies have their family name on the front of the building. As we emerge from the current economic situation, and as I read the labor pool projections, the industry will see a significant loss of talent in the years ahead. Many of our companies may not have the resources necessary to attract young talent or provide professional development to retain current employees. These companies rely on outside resources, like the PMA Foundation, to develop opportunities that will grow talent across the career continuum.
How have financial contributions to the PMA Foundation benefited the industry?
DS: The benefits are enormous on a ROI basis, as the PMA Foundation’s programs continue to prove their worth and positively impact the industry. In addition, the PMA Foundation is developing future programs to address critical talent challenges that lie ahead for the industry. If you believe in and have a passion for our industry, then you and your company have to have skin in the game.
In what ways can industry members get involved and support the PMA Foundation’s mission to attract, develop and retain talent?
Everyone can make a difference, regardless of where they are in their career and what their position is within their company. Whether they or their company choose to make a financial commitment or they choose to contribute time as a volunteer, they will be supporting our industry’s efforts to secure the best and brightest.