Executive Vice President, Marketing, Wilcox Fresh
“I believe it is very important to give back to the produce industry that has been so instrumental in developing and shaping my career. In addition to being able to make an annual contribution to the PMA Foundation, I am able to volunteer my time to help attract future leaders and work with them to understand why the produce industry makes a great career choice.”
Principal, Tanimura & Antle
“At this point in my life I felt strongly that it was time to give back to the industry that has been so generous to me during my 30 plus year career. One of the best ways for me to do this is by giving my time, talent and treasure to the PMA Foundation for Industry Talent Board. The PMA Foundation continues to develop impressive programs that fit all levels of a career continuum. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with and mentoring our young talent and it is my intention to continue to help these young men and women develop their skills and guide them in finding their dream career in the produce industry.
Director of Business Development, To-Jo Mushrooms, Inc.
“As a member of the Joe Nucci Memorial Golf Tournament Advisory Committee, I look forward each year to this opportunity that brings together great people from across the industry. The networking is great and my customers love it. It is also a great way to support the Career Pathways program and help the industry grow its talent pool.”
CEO & President, Frieda’s Inc.
“I love mentoring young women and men to further their professional development and the PMA Foundation provides a perfect venue for me to do that within our industry. These programs have also been a way for us to find interns for our company.”
Director of Category Management/Produce, Reinhart Foodservice
“At this point in my career, I would like to help mentor young, talented students who have the “Heart and Drive” to get into the Fresh produce Industry…as this business is not for people with weak character or a 9 to 5 work ethic. The people whom I have mentored have, in my opinion, been the “Best and the Brightest”. I enjoy the mentoring process as I take the student and totally immerse them for 4 days in our business from introductions to key industry professionals, walking the show together, being involved in all meetings and dinners to give them a flavor of how complex our business is, but also instill in them that the key to success is hard work, INTEGRITY, focus, non-normal hours and commitment. I also have them meet and work with other members or the Reinhart Foodservice Team who are also at the convention. This year my student not only worked with me, but also with Eric Cronert our VP of Marketing and Sharon Karlman, VP of Food Safety and Quality Assurance. They were exposed to multiple areas of our business, which will help in choosing which career path to take in the Fresh produce Industry.
My latest student, Colleen Valko from Michigan State, was like a sponge when it came to learning about the Fresh Produce industry. I get as much, if not more, out of being a mentor and seeing the excitement and hope in the eyes of those lucky enough to become part of the Pack Family Career Pathways. Working with the future leaders in the Fresh Produce Industry, give me hope that the next generation will build upon what those going before them have built.
I’m truly Blessed to be part of the Greatest Industry, with the greatest and most conscientious and giving people on the face of the earth.”