Feb 26, 2020
2020 Leadership Class picked by Eastern Produce Council

The Eastern Produce Council has chosen 20 up-and-coming produce professionals for its 2020 Leadership Class, a professional development experience for those with less than 10 years of experience in the industry.

The respected program delivers a dual-medium learning environment. “The goal is to provide those selected for the program the opportunity to gain valuable knowledge from both classroom and field experience,” said Susan McAleavey Sarlund, Eastern Produce Council (EPC) executive director.

Participants selected for this year’s program include: Rich Arduini of FreshPro Food Distributors; Sam Bartley of Aero Farms; Casey Boles of Protech Advisory Services; Andrea Brenner of Four Seasons Produce; Kevin Carroll of Wonderful Citrus; Frank Ciammaruconi of Wakefern Food Corp.; Dylan Dembeck of Minkus Family Farms; Phu Din of FreshPro Food Distributors; Rachel Fabrizio of Four Seasons Produce; Michael Harwood of New York Apple Sales; Andrew Hernandez of LGS Specialty Sales; Brian Kenny of Wakefern Food Corp.; Justin Kerner of Ballard Spahr LLP; Hailey Krinsky of  Robinson Fresh; Mattie Leid of Hess Brothers Fruit Co.; Michael Paolino of Wakefern Food Corp.; Annie Pape of Frank Donio Inc.; Gabrielle Procacci of Procacci Brothers Sales Corp.; Kelsey Rose of John Vena Inc.; and Tori Wong of PRO*ACT.

The 2020 Program will start off in March with a visit to the Philadelphia Produce Wholesale Market (PWPM) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, followed by Holt Cargo Systems at the Port of Gloucester, New Jersey. “Participants will gain first-hand knowledge of the in’s and out’s of these crucial logistics hubs,” said McAleavey Sarlund.

In April, the group will participate in a Food Safety and Modernization Act (FSMA) seminar aimed at presenting and discussing significant food safety issues. Combined classroom and field experiences will take place at Hionis Greenhouses in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey, in June, and at Rutgers’ Syder Research Farm in Pittstown, New Jersey, in September.

The program will wrap up with a seminar at the New York Produce Show in December. In addition, participants will network at the show’s Opening Cocktail Reception and be recognized at the Keynote Breakfast. “We look forward to engaging with this group of talented industry professionals and continuing the valuable contribution of this program,” said McAleavey Sarlund.

EPC 2019 Leadership Class field experience. Photo: EPC

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