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SNAC International Board Approves Cochran To Succeed Avery As CEO

Christine Cochran

SNAC International’s Board of Directors has approved the appointment of Christine Cochran as its next president and CEO. Cochran will replace Elizabeth Avery, who previously shared her plans with the board to retire following the conclusion of SNX, the association’s new education and collaboration forum, on March 27-29, 2022.

The news comes after a five-month competitive search.

“Christine Cochran is a dynamic leader of membership organizations with a deep knowledge of nutrition and a proven track record in government advocacy, coalition-building and strategic planning,” said Mike Harper, CFO of Rudolph Foods and chairman of the SNAC CEO Search Committee. “We believe Christine is the right leader to build on the momentum established by Elizabeth’s highly successful tenure.” 

Cochran has served as executive director of the Grain Foods Foundation for the past nine years. Previously, she was president of the Commodity Markets Council, having been promoted to that position in 2010, after leading the organization’s government affairs program. She holds a juris doctorate from Georgetown University Law Center and a bachelor’s degree in agricultural economics from the University of Missouri.

“Elizabeth has led SNAC International with a relentless focus on member value for five years as CEO,” said Rob Sarlls, chairman of the SNAC Board of Directors and president and CEO of Wyandot Snacks. “Under her leadership, SNAC has grown in every dimension and has never been in a stronger position. Her innovation and growth agenda led to a tripling of investment in education and professional development; increased effectiveness and recognition for advocacy leadership; greater inclusivity across the industry for participation by new companies and diverse leaders; and a bold restructuring of the industry’s convention that meets the need for new opportunities for snack industry collaboration. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, membership is at a record high, and the organization is on extremely solid financial footing.”

To ensure a seamless transition, Cochran will join SNAC on Feb. 1, and will take the reigns as president and CEO on April 1, at the conclusion of SNX.

The board thanks the search committee for its service to the industry.  In addition to Harper, the committee was comprised of Fritz Kohmann, CFO of Shearer’s Foods; Leanne Oliver, general counsel for PepsiCo Foods N.A.; Greg Pearson, CEO of Pretzels Inc.; David Read, SVP of sales for Printpack; Sarlls; Dan Sifer, SVP of supply chain for Herr Foods; and Lisa Stern, SVP of sales and marketing for LifeSpice.

Founded in 1937, SNAC International (formerly Snack Food Association) is the leading international trade association for the snack industry, representing more than 400 companies worldwide, including suppliers, marketers and manufacturers. For more information, visit snacintl.org.

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