The newly elected and appointed members of the Organic Trade Association’s (OTA’s) Board of Directors for the coming year are Samantha Cabaluna of Earthbound Farm, Perry Clutts of Pleasantview Farm, Nicole Bernard Dawes of Late July Organic Snacks, Kelly Shea of WhiteWave Foods, and Marci Zaroff of Portico Brand Group.
Both Shea and Dawes were re-elected, while Clutts was chosen to fill the new Farmer seat* on the Board. Cabaluna has been appointed to a three-year seat, while Zaroff was appointed to fill a one-year vacancy.
In the recent election, an impressive one third (32.8 percent) of OTA’s trade member companies eligible to vote did so. This is a healthy sign that OTA’s membership is involved and engaged in its trade association. Regardless of size or type of operation, each trade member company has one vote in OTA elections.
“In this election, there was great interest by OTA members to serve on the Board of Directors. Those who ran for the Board had outstanding credentials, and represented many diverse sectors within our industry. It’s great to have so many members volunteer to serve our trade association,” said Matt McLean, President of OTA’s Board of Directors.
A remaining Canadian seat on OTA’s Board of Directors will be appointed by the Canada Organic Trade Association (COTA). That appointment has yet to be announced.
Board officers for the coming year will be selected at the next Board of Directors meeting, to be held Tuesday, Sept. 18, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Room 301 at the Baltimore Convention Center. OTA welcomes members to attend and observe its meetings, except during the Executive Session. If you wish to attend the in-person Board meeting, or to formally address the Board regarding a specific topic or issue, contact OTA Executive Administrator Cathleen Strong.
The new OTA Board of Directors will be officially introduced in Baltimore at OTA’s Annual Meeting, to be held between 4:30 and 5:30 p.m. Sept. 21 in Room 315 of the Baltimore Convention Center. All members are encouraged to attend.
Those whose terms on the Board are expiring are Craig Weakley of Craig Weakley Consulting and Todd Linsky of Cal-Organic/Grimmway Farms.
In addition to those elected and appointed, existing Board members continuing their terms are Matt McLean of Uncle Matt’s Organics Inc., Sarah Bird of Annie’s Inc., Gunta Vitins of Vitins Consulting, Tony Bedard of Frontier Natural Productions Co-op, Chris Ely of Applegate Farms, Melody Meyer of UNFI, Scott Nash of MOM’s Organic Market, Julia Sabin of Smucker Natural Foods Inc., and Leslie Zuck of Pennsylvania Certified Organic.
*The OTA Board established a designated Farmer seat in January 2012 to help ensure a voice for organic farmers in the organization’s leadership. One of OTA’s Core Values is the understanding that organic farms are the foundation of the organic industry.