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Jon R. Anderson began his career with AIB International as a food safety auditor and rose to become Head of Food Safety Audit Services and later as Vice President of Audit Services.
While leading the food safety audit services department, Jon directed and managed the field inspection program for North America/South America. He assisted with the AIB International/European office and inspection program. At the time of his leadership, AIB International client list included approximately 9,500 food manufacturing and distribution sites in 102 different countries. Jon also became highly proficient and highly respected as an Occupational Safety and Health consultant and managed a profitable OSHA consulting group during and after his tenure at AIB International.
In 2003, Jon led the transition of management for the BISSC Office of Certification to his care at AIB International. In 2006, Jon once again led the transition of BISSC management to ownership by the AIB. Jon served as Director of the BISSC Office of Certification and member of the BISSC Board of Directors until his departure from AIB International in 2014.
Committed to the improvement of the ANSI/ASB/Z50.2-2015 Standard for Bakery Equipment: Sanitation Requirements; Jon served on two work group committees dedicated to the improvement of the current standard. Jon also serves the Z50 Committee by holding a position on the committee dedicated to the improvement of the ANSI/ASB/Z50.1-2006 R2016) Standard for Bakery Equipment – Safety Requirements.
A native of Manhattan Kansas, Jon R. Anderson is founder and CEO of JRA Occupational Safety Consulting Services LLC. With 35 years of experience in occupational safety and health, Jon is a highly respected and recognized safety professional with an in-depth knowledge of Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) standards. His experience extends to all 50 U.S. states and Puerto Rico and as an international consultant in England, Canada, the Netherlands, Mexico, and Brazil. Jon’s client list includes Fortune 100 and 500 companies in addition to many small to medium size manufacturing sites and start-up companies.
Sumana is the Principal Scientist at Ardent Mills (2015- to date). Previously, she established and led the Center for Grain Food Innovation, CSIRO, Australia (2008 – 2014) where she developed technologies to add value to low protein wheat and Australian sweet lupins. She had also led the research programs on food and dough rheology at Kraft and General Mills Inc., USA (1990 – 2008). Sumana holds a PhD in Polymer Physical Chemistry, from the University of Minnesota, USA and has over 25 publications in peer reviewed journals on dough rheology & structure. She has a passion for applying fundamental sciences into practical applications.
Robin Blakely is the CEO of Creative Center of America, a business development company that leverages publicity to increase business growth for brands. Robin offers a multitude of highly specialized services that include planned coaching and publicity management. She also designs and builds work infrastructures for business teams and creates the communications collateral to support them.
Robin develops comprehensive Social Media Campaigns that include set-up, strategy, and branded content. She provides full video production and frequently creates ghosted articles, press kits, bios, newsletters, and scripts. Robin has an extensive background with retail events at places that include Whole Foods, Wild Oats, Wal-Mart, and Barnes and Noble.
Robin Blakely is the author of four business books. Her favorite national clients include the American Society of Baking.
Emily’s professional career began teaching elementary school, then continued as an instructional designer at the post-secondary level. As a performance consultant, Emily specialized in project management, program facilitation, train-the-trainer, and performance improvement in a variety of business sectors including education, manufacturing, and non-profit. Prior to joining BEMA, Emily managed the learning and organizational development function for MeadWestvaco, a global leader in the manufacturing of packaging solutions. She has earned several professional certifications, as well as a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary and Early Childhood Education from Northwest Missouri State University and a Master’s degree in Curriculum Development from Baker University.
Brent Bradshaw is vice president of marketing for Flowers Foods’ cake brands — Mrs. Freshley’s, sold nationally through warehouse distribution, and Tastykake, sold through fresh direct-store-delivery distribution. His responsibilities include advertising, consumer research, new product development, and packaging design.
Bradshaw joined Flowers in 2003 and held positions within the company’s warehouse business, including product manager for Mrs. Freshley’s. In 2005, he was named brand manager for Flowers’ top specialty bread, bun, and roll and cake brands. He was named to his current position in 2011. Under his guidance, Mrs. Freshley’s and Tastykake have won numerous industry awards for innovation. He also helped manage the successful expansion of Tastykake into new markets across the country.
Bradshaw holds a bachelor’s degree in business management from the University of Georgia in Athens and a master of business administration in marketing from Georgia State University in Atlanta.
Headquartered in Thomasville, Ga., Flowers Foods, Inc. (NYSE: FLO) is one of the largest producers of fresh packaged bakery foods in the United States with 2015 sales of $3.8 billion. Flowers operates bakeries across the country that produce a wide range of bakery products. Among the company's top brands are Nature's Own, Wonder, Tastykake, and Dave’s Killer Bread. Learn more at www.flowersfoods.com.
Robert Burgh is president of Nexcor Technologies, Inc., a software provider for food manufacturing plants worldwide. He first learned the baking business in his family's wholesale hearth plant in Trenton, NJ. He has held engineer positions in several bakeries after attending K-State and AIB BME #3. He founded Nexcor in 1983 to develop a CMMS for bakeries. In 2000, the AIB contacted him to develop sanitation management software. He is a member of ANSI Z50.2 committee to update standard sanitary design of bakery equipment. He has spoken previously at ASB.
Arturo has 27 years of experience in the baking industry. He has worked in Operations, Environmental, Sanitation, Food Safety, Quality, Operations and Crisis Management.
He is currently Director of Quality and Food Safety for Bimbo Bakeries USA. Bimbo Bakeries operates 59 facilities in the United States and is producing fine baked goods under well known brands like Bimbo, Marinela, Thomas’, Oroweat, Sara Lee, Earthgrains, Arnolds, Entenmann’s, Stroehmann’s, Freihofer’s, Boboli, Brownberry and others.
He is responsible for developing and implementing standard Quality and Food Safety systems across the Organization as well as developing best practices, building capabilities, providing technical support and assuring compliance. Before moving to the US, Arturo was responsible for the Food Safety and Crisis Management area in Bimbo Mexico and Central America.
After graduating from the Ohio State University in 1994 with a bachelors of science in Food Science and Nutrition, Dr. Lin Carson headed over to the Grain Science Department at Kansas State University, where she focused her graduate curricula on baking, bread and grain product texture. She graduated from the Department of Grain Science with a master's degree in 1998 and a PhD in 2002.
During her term as the Treasurer on the Board of Directors at ASB, Lin led the launch of the Product Development Competition for the Society. She is passionate about the commercial baking industry and has mentored many young professionals and women in this industry.
In 2007, she started the R&D program and baking lab at Wendy's New Bakery Company in Ohio. In 2013, she moved to Portland, OR, to fill the position of Director of Technical Services at Dave's Killer Bread (DKB), where she was in charge of food safety, quality, co-manufacturing and R&D procedures. In 2014, Lin left DKB to start BAKERpedia to fill this gap. Today, BAKERpedia is the world's only on-line technical resource and platform for the commercial baking industry.
Mike Day is President of Banner-Day located in Saginaw, Michigan. Banner-Day specializes in custom combustion, automation and temperature control system solutions for large scale commercial bakery ovens and electric impedance pipe heating systems for commercial and industrial process piping system applications.
Mike joined Banner-Day in 1993 and during his 21 years with the company he has served in numerous roles throughout the organization including Field Service Technician, Assistant Field Service Manager, and new Equipment and After Market Sales and Service Manager. He has served as President of the company since 2011. Active in bakery industry associations, he is a current member of the Board of Directors for BEMA and has contributed to the Bakery Industry Forum as a committee member. He is also a 15 year American Society of Baking member. Mike earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Vermont in 1989.
Dean co-founded Wheat Montana Farms and Bakery in 1990. Since then the company has grown to service a wide geographical area with flour, fresh/frozen bakery products, and 4 delis.
This farm to market success story includes a 15,000 acre grain farm, flour milling operation, and intermediate wholesale bakery. Fresh bread is distributed throughout Montana and Wyoming. Frozen bread sales occur in 14 states. Recently Wheat Montana has begun growing/sourcing heirloom and ancient grains to accommodate larger bakers that want to enter these lucrative niche markets. Wheat Montana services wholesale/retail customers with mill products, and fresh/frozen bread outlets.
Hope Frahm is the Executive Chef of Love's Oven located in Denver, Colorado. She came to her position in August of 2013. Before Love's Oven, Hope expanded her knowledge by working in several fields before discovering her passion for baking. One of these fields included working as a mechanic when an unfortunate accident burned thirty-five percent of her body, including the inside of her mouth and numbing her sense of taste. Enjoying challenges and hard work, Hope enrolled in the Art Institute of Las Vegas International Culinary School baking and pastry program. During culinary school, she began working for Thomas Keller's Bouchon Bistro as a chef de partie. She strengthened her pastry skills futher by working at Wolfgang Puck's Postrio before moving to Denver, CO. At Love's Oven, Hope is responsible for developing retail and medical marijuana infused products, as well as managing a staff of classically trained chefs. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her boyfriend Walter and her dog and cate, Potato and Mr. Eko.
Marjorie Hellmer is President and co-founder of Cypress Research Associates, LLC. Marjorie is a seasoned research professional with 20 years of experience in business-to-business and consumer research. Cypress Research Associates focuses on issues affecting the grain-based foods and broader food processing industries, including brand positioning, b2b customer experience, and industry trends. Clients include ingredient and equipment manufacturers, industry trade publications, and associations.
Ms. Hellmer holds a Master of Arts degree in psychology with a specialization in applied research methodology from the University of Missouri at Kansas City. She is a long-time member of the American Marketing Association. In her free time, Marjorie is an avid runner, scuba diver and fan of living fully in each moment.
Dave has served in the baking industry for the last 37 years. He has held multiple engineering and manufacturing leadership positions with companies such as General Mills, President Baking, Nabisco and Kroger. He currently is the Senior Director of Engineering for Hostess Brands. Dave was the Chairman of ASB in 2014, and was also the Baking and Snack Operations Executive of the year for 2010. Dave has served as a Baker Representative with BEMA on the Baking Industry Forum, and has worked closely with both the safety and sanitation ANSI standards.
While there’s little grey in Paul’s sideburns, Paul has years of experience in the Baking Industry growing up going to work with his grandfather when he oversaw operations of Campbell Taggart Bakeries. His experience includes Field Service, Merchandising, Route Accounting and is now North American Lead for Field Mobility with Zebra Technologies.
Stuart Hunt is President of SG Systems LLC & Co Founder / Director of SG Systems Europe Ltd.
As one of the industry's most in demand, bona fide manufacturing traceability experts, he has helped many companies achieve practical solutions to their traceability requirements (including Fortune 500's - Sysco, PPG, ConAgra, Kroger, as well as hundreds of multinational businesses).
With more than 18 years of executive experience, he has a wealth of knowledge building winning teams and leading managers at organizations in North America and Western Europe.
He is a frequently requested speaker at conferences and exhibitions on the subject of traceability, particularly concerning complex manufacturing & legislative requirements. He is well experienced, knowledgeable & intuitive in the field of Systems Integration - operating teams that engineer solutions to link different systems together to eliminate data handling errors.
Jesse Leal is Quality Manager of Food Safety Services Training for AIB International. He has held this position since April 1, 2014. He is originally from Arizona and now lives in Los Angeles.
Prior to coming to AIB, Jesse worked at Frito Lay and Mission Foods for a combined 10 years in various positions. He joined AIB in 1996 as a food safety auditor, and later became a food defense specialist, conducting more than 1700 food safety audits related to GMPs, agricultural practices, food defense, and FSMA in 11 countries and for some of the largest multinational food manufacturers. Jesse has also served as a consultant to help El Salvador implement their country’s Good Agricultural Practices and has authored several trade press articles.
Currently Jesse travels globally providing food safety training in both English and Spanish for AIB employees, as well as food industry audiences. He leads public and private training for employees at all career levels.
Peggy is the Chief Executive Officer and an owner of Love's Oven, a cannabis infused products manufacturer based in Denver, Colorado. Peggy became a partner at Love's Oven in 2011 and retired from her 33 year mergers and acquisitions career at United Health Group in 2014.
Since joining Love's Oven Peggy has been instrumental in creating a operating model that has supported a 1200% increase in sales since 2013. That operating model reflects Love's Overn's unyeilding belief in food safety and quality in an industry that is not yet federally regulated. Peggy has direct oversight for the bakery operation and as CEO ultimate responsbility for all facets of the company.
Gilles Mur is currently Global Marketing Director of Food Enzymes business in DuPont Industrial Biosciences.
After more than 10 years of various global business management responsibilities in the food ingredients business in Danisco, Gilles joined Genencor, the Biotechnology division of Danisco in 2007 to take over a global business development position in the feed and food markets.
Further to the acquisition of Danisco by DuPont in 2011, he took over the responsibility of director of strategic marketing and business development for the Home and Personal Care business within the new strategic business unit, Industrial BioSciences, in DuPont.
Gilles is graduated from "Industrial Physics and Chemistry School of Paris" and has a MSc in Science of materials, and an executive MBA from INSEAD.
Julie is a ‘stratecutionist’ – with over twenty years of experience in strategy, design and execution of Brands, Marketing Programs, Selling Programs and New Product Innovation ranging from start-ups to multi-million dollar brands.
Every great achievement starts with a story. Julie has a passion for, and the unique ability to connect the needs of the company to their desired customer and consumer, developing solutions and programs that deliver results. Delivering the story that makes the difference.
An MBA graduate with a continual passion for learning, she likes to read and take on-line courses.
Dr. Kirk O'Donnell has been a member of ASB for over 25 years. He has earned Bachelor's degrees in Milling Science and Management as well as Bakery Science and Management from Kansas State University. He went on to earn an MBA from Texas A&M at Corpus Christi and then a Doctor of Education degree from Kansas State. Kirk has worked as a production supervisor, technical troubleshooter, superintendent, plant manager, instructor, school leader, consultant, and author over the course of his professional career. He has had opportunities to travel throughout Asia, Europe, Africa, and Latin America in his role as an instructor and consultant. He currently is Principal of Bakers Growth LLC, which provides educational products and services to the baking industry.
Priya Rathnam, M.P.H. is a Supervisory Consumer Safety Officer in the Division of Enforcement/Office of Compliance at FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN). As a team leader in the Food Adulteration Assessment Branch, and subject matter expert, she routinely reviews regulatory actions related to microbial contamination in food. Priya has worked at CFSAN for over 15 years, and works closely with FDA’s Office of Regulatory Affairs and Office of Chief Counsel in determining regulatory strategies for follow up action. She currently is serving as a co-lead for the FSMA Phase 2 workgroup for implementation of the Preventive Controls in Human foods regulation.
David is Director of Consumer Insights at Ardent Mills LLC, the nation's largest provider of flour and grains. Prior to joining Ardent Mills in June 2014, David had been Director Consumer Insights for the Commercial Foods Division of ConAgra Foods in Omaha NE. David is a career CPG foods market researcher. He was previously at Quaker Oats and Keebler Company and The NPD Group, Inc., all in Chicago. David has a PhD in Consumer Psychology from Purdue University. He applies his training and curiosity about social values, emotions and decision making to further enhance his insights about consumers and the marketplace.
Ryan joined Kerry in 2012 and currently holds the position of VP & General Manager responsible for developing the Dairy & Bakery end use markets. Additional responsibilities include the technology owner for Kerry's complete emulsifier and texture system portfolio. Prior to joining Kerry, Ryan worked for Associated British Foods in a similar leadership capacity. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois with a degree in Print Journalism. Ryan and his wife Melissa live in Sycamore, IL with their two children Louise (4) and Charlie (2).
Ashin (Ash) Soti hails from a small town in India and has been in the US since 2009. He is currently the Corporate Maintenance Manager with Bimbo Bakeries USA and has been with the company for 5 years. He is on H1-B work visa which is the most common type. He has been a student, volunteer worker, a trainee and an employee so he is very knowledgeable and aware of the subject matter. He is a passionate baker!
Richard J. Starke, Director of Reading Thermal, holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology (Rochester, NY) and a Master of Business Administration from St. Joseph’s University (Philadelphia, PA). Richard has more than 35 years of professional experience, covering a broad range of leadership positions, with demonstrated expertise in electrical engineering, bakery production, business management, and marketing. Before joining Reading Thermal in 2002 Richard held positions as Member of Technical Staff for AT&T Bell Laboratories, and Business Manager for Unique Pretzel Bakery. He also served as President / Owner of Uncle Ernie’s Cookie Company. Richard’s responsibility is to direct the company’s operations and communicate technology associated with commercial oven profiling.
Over 30 years of active membership at ASB. Chairman of the Z50 Safety and Sanitation Committee.
Brian Strouts is employed by AIB International as Vice President of Baking and Food Technical Services. He has more than 35 years of experience working in the baking industry. He is a graduate of Kansas State University with a degree in Bakery Science and Management. The first part of his career was spent working for wholesale bakeries producing a wide range of products focusing on sweet goods, cookies and crackers. Facility positions included production, quality assurance, research & development, and food safety.
In his current position at AIB International Mr. Strouts leads a group of baking and food professionals providing training and technical assistance to the cereal grains industry. Service offerings of AIB International include public and private training, contract research and development, in-plant technical assistance, analytical services, and food labeling services. Mr. Strouts has frequently traveled across the U.S. and around the world consulting with private companies on manufacturing challenges and employee training.
Mary is the Regulatory Affairs and Quality Assurance Director for AB Mauri North America. She leads the Quality Assurance team at their North America Headquarters office in St. Louis, MO and has functional responsibilities for quality control, quality assurance and regulatory compliance within all 5 manufacturing plants in the region.
Prior to joining AB Mauri, she most recently held the role of Corporate Regulatory Compliance Manager at Kraft Foods where she had spent 11 years at various roles of increasing responsibilities. Prior to her career with Kraft Foods she held the role of Quality Assurance Manager for Five Star Food Base Company, St. Paul, MN and Quality Specialist for Guinness Packaging, Runcorn, England.
Mary is an AIB Certified Baker. She has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Food Science and Technology and a Master's of Science degree in Food Safety and Quality Management from the University of Lincolnshire and Humberside, UK. She has a second Master’s degree in Software Information Systems from the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN.
Todd was attending Hanover College when he was offered a position with Ellison Bakery. He began his career with Ellison Bakery in 1982 and has served in various positions of increasing responsibility including distribution director, plant manager, sales & marketing as well as vice president/general manager. His current role with Ellison Bakery is president. Ellison Bakery, owned by the Ellis family, manufactures cookie products for the food service industry, private label grocery trade, and ice cream and confection industries.
Todd completed the AIB Certified Baker Program in 1990 and has worked in the baking industry for more than 34 years. He has been a member of the Biscuit & Cracker Manufacturers Association and has served as treasurer, is on the board of directors and the executive committee, and currently serving as chairman of the board. He is also involved in his community and serves as president of a local non-profit organization. He is married and has five children, two of which are married, and has three grandchildren.
Rasma Zvaners serves as Policy Director for the American Bakers Association (ABA) and joined the organization in September 2006.
As Policy Director Ms. Zvaners is the primary liaison for both ABA’s Energy and Environmental Health Committee and the Safety Committee. Ms. Zvaners is responsible for managing ABA’s Energy Star initiative and sustainability work as well as the ABA Safety Recognition Program. She also works closely with Ms. Sanders on implementation of the food safety regulations and some ingredient specific issues. Prior to ABA she was with the American Chemistry Council (ACC) where in her last post, Ms. Zvaners served as Director of Regulatory Policy. She managed and led member companies on significant regulatory and policy issues including environment, energy, public health and products.
She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the Michigan State University and she attended The George Washington University where she earned an American Bar Association Legal Assistant’s certification.