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President’s Message – March 2019

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” ~ Margaret Mead

The above quote from Margaret Mead, a well-know and greatly respected American cultural anthropologist, perfectly sums up the essence of FPSA's annual meetings and reflects the opportunities and expectations that all of us bring to our upcoming gathering March 19th – 21st in San Antonio, Texas. As an attendee to the conference you will hear from a great array of prominent speakers who will inspire you, educate you, and have you considering a different approach to some of your everyday work activities. Let me also inform you of some of the highlights and great happenings that will take place at our conference.

First, we are indeed fortunate to have as our keynote speaker Dawn Hudson, former President & CEO of Pepsi Cola North America & PepsiCo Foodservice and Chief Marketing Officer for the National Football League. While with Pepsi she helped create lasting and effective partnerships between the Pepsi brand and the biggest organizations in all of sports such as the MLB and NFL. Additionally, Dawn was brought into the NFL at a time of many controversies and was trusted to take on some of the most talked about issues: “deflategate”; domestic violence; and the rising concern around CTE. Dawn's knowledge and experience and her lessons on embracing change and driving innovation through strong leadership will be both inspiring and invigorating.

Second, for the Council Breakout sessions, each of the Councils has secured unique and outstanding speakers for the many education/networking sessions that will have processors and suppliers talking. There will be representatives and presentations at the conference from Treehouse Food; Land O'Frost; Sargento Foods; Taylor Farms; Tyson Foods; HPP Fresh; Darigold, CocoCanna; Thurswood Farms; Epstein Architecture, Engineering& Construction; CBM Global; Eurofins Scientific; Gray Construction, and more. This is an excellent opportunity for you to learn from these important food industry professionals and make new connections with those companies you are currently doing business with, or those you would like to do business with.

Third, this year marks a change in one of the most valued and enjoyed activities at Annual Conference – our annual auction. A newly created industry-wide event will not only serve to

support all our Council's activities but also is guaranteed to be an evening filled with great entertainment. The host and emcee for the night is comedian, James Cunningham, from Eat St. on the Cooking channel. We are still seeking donations for our auction. The donations range from electronics to thrilling life-changing experiences. There is still time for you and your company to submit a donation by completing the FPSA Auction 2019 Contributions Reply Form and sending it to Alaina Herrera at [email protected] by no later than Friday, March 8th.

Lastly and best of all, the upcoming Conference will provide what attendees seek most of all –
– networking opportunities. And, at this year's conference you will be able to take part in the Association's new Network structure efforts – where the goal is to allow members to achieve a “deeper dig” into a variety of substantive issues at our scheduled meetings and roundtables.

Click HERE for a full schedule of events, and registration information. I hope you will be joining us in sunny Texas where you will not only hear what your Association and Foundation are doing during our Annual Business Meeting and Foundation Update – but, also be able to take part and provide input into the shaping of our future.

As always, please feel free to reach out to me at [email protected] or at 703/663-1200 with any questions about our upcoming Annual Conference or how the Association can be of assistance to you. I look forward to seeing you soon in San Antonio.

David Seckman
President/CEO, FPSA