Mar 11, 2013
Brannen resigns from VOC

Wendy Brannen, who served as executive director of the Vidalia Onion Committee (VOC) since July 2005, recently resigned to take a position with the U.S. Apple Association in Washington, D.C.

“This has not been a job. This has been a joy,” said Brannen of her time at VOC. “These growers and packers, the industry, and the Vidalia community have been beyond good to me. While I look forward to working in a new industry in a new place, I will always be thankful for this tremendous adventure, and without a doubt will continue to be a Vidalia onion ambassador.”

“She has really helped us to become a major marketed commodity and shown great leadership and focus in helping to ensure our marketing strategies were successful,” said Jason Herndon of Herndon Farms in Lyons, Ga., vice chairman of VOC. “We will sincerely miss her, but wish her the best in her new position with USApple.”

During her tenure with VOC, Brannen redeveloped the industry’s website, introduced the group to social media strategy and expanded retail outreach through broad-based consumer programs including online contests and giveaways, downloadable coupons and paid advertising. She also has developed numerous major promotional partnerships.

In 2012, Brannen directed the Sweet Vidalias & Country Music promotion with Universal Music Group in Nashville. During that program, VOC launched a new Vidalia Facebook page that garnered almost 36,000 fans in the four-monthpromotional window.

Brannen also spearheaded the popular Shrek “Ogres & Onions” partnership with DreamWorks Animation. That promotion earned VOC attention with the national media, and drove sales of consumer packs up almost 30 percent, according to VOC.

Brannen also spearheaded the Vidalia Onion Museum. The museum opened in Vidalia, Ga., in April 2011, and has had visitors from more than 45 states and 12 countries.

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