2016 SQF International Conference


Download the final agenda

Schedule | Program Details | Speakers | Speaker Resources

The SQF Conference offers a robust education program designed to meet the needs of food safety and quality professionals in the manufacturing, retail and third party certification industry. In addition to industry-specific breakout sessions, attendees will have the opportunity to hear compelling keynotes by guest speakers, focusing on personal development topics.


FMI is joining forces with SQFI to bring you enhanced retail food safety education. In lieu of the annual Retail Food Safety Forum,the SQF Conference will offer a dedicated retail food safety track.You’ll get the latest updates on retail food safety issues, share ideas and best practices with your retail food safety peers and take home practical food safety solutions to implement in any size retail operation. You’ll also get updates on the new SQF Retail Code.


Key: FSMA = FSMA-related | RET = Suggested/Recommended for Retailers


Captain Mark Kelly, Commander of Space Shuttle Endeavour's Final Mission & Space and Aviation Contributor for NBC News/MSNBC | Bio

Mark KellyOn January 8, 2011, Captain Mark Kelly would face the toughest challenge of his life when an assassination attempt was made on his wife, former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. His dedication to family and Giffords's road to recovery would captivate the nation. For Mark Kelly, focus equals success-even in the face of adversity. Personifying the best of the American spirit, Kelly is a homegrown hero who was a combat pilot in Iraq, an astronaut on four space shuttle missions, and commander of the final flight of Space Shuttle Endeavour. He has combined teamwork, leadership, communication, and family in an unwavering commitment to succeed. Kelly shows audiences how to accomplish their mission while maintaining the love and devotion to family that is the foundation of true success.


Curtis Zimmerman, Author and Speaker, Curtis Zimmerman Group, LLC | Bio

Join us for a dynamic experiential session that will give you tools to ignite your ultimate potential. You will have an innovative and interactive learning experience that is guaranteed to entertain and energize, while inspiring you to "Live the Dream." You will learn that empowered individuals can build cohesive, productive companies with forward momentum that create lasting outcomes.



Rod Wheeler, Founder and CEO of the Global Food Defense Institute, Senior Law Enforcement Contributor/Crime Analyst, Fox News Channel. | Bio

The prospect of a terrorist attack on the U.S. food supply is not just an implausible plot in an action movie. The threat of intentional contamination is real, and according to FDA’s proposed food defense rule under FSMA,  food facilities will be required to prepare and implement a Food Defense plan to assess vulnerability, identify actionable process steps and implement mitigation strategies to prevent the intentional adulteration of the food supply. Get an overview of the types and scope of threats that food facilities face and how to identify the difference between intentional and unintentional contamination. Learn the key steps to complying with FSMA and SQF Code food defense requirements, review best practices for developing a food defense plan and focused mitigation strategies and see what’s in store for the future of food defense. Participants will leave with a better sense of how to  recognize risk, enhance readiness, improve resiliency and use their best offense for good defense.

Crazy for Cupcakes: How Food Trends Impact the Way We Eat and the World Around Us | RET

David Sax, Journalist and Author of “Why We’re Crazy for Cupcakes but Fed Up with Fondue” | Bio

In today’s interconnected world, food trends are popping up quicker, growing bigger, and having a greater impact on more of what we eat than ever before. Journalist and Author David Sax explores where these trends come from, how they grow, and what impact they have: on marketing, business, and the consumer. In doing so, he helps us not only understand why some foods become popular while others don’t, but he reveals how the power of consumer behavior takes it way beyond just what we eat. From the cronut craze to the impact of social media on food to world-changing trends (third-wave coffee, anyone?), Sax opens our eyes to the economic and cultural impact of what’s on our plate and in our pantry.

Environmental Monitoring meets Whole Genome Sequencing: Changing The Rules of Epidemiology | RET

Dr. Marc W. Allard, Division of Microbiology, Food and Drug Administration | Bio
Hilary S. Thesmar, PhD, RD, CFS,
Vice President, Food Safety Programs, Food Marketing Institute | Bio

Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) is a complex and cutting-edge technology that enables foodborne bacteria to be linked to outbreaks with greater accuracy and speed, allowing them to be investigated and solved sooner. And it’s rapidly changing the rules of molecular biology and epidemiology. Get an overview of the essential components of WGS and how this technology is being used to support investigations of foodborne illnesses and solve the most challenging outbreaks. Uncover the wealth of information now available on pathogens that allow accurate DNA fingerprints and more precise and rapid investigations and discuss the importance of and best practices for designing environmental monitoring plans in food production facilities.

SQF 2017 and Beyond: A Town Hall Meeting | RET

LeAnn Chuboff, Senior Technical Director, Safe Quality Food Institute | Bio

From the new retail code and the release of Edition 8 of the SQF Code, what does SQFI have in store for 2017? Get answers to your questions on changes and improvements to the SQF Code at this interactive town hall-style session.

Best Practices for a Supplier Approval Program for FSVP and SQF Compliance | FSMA | RET

Jennifer L. McCreary, Technical Manager Training and Education Services, NSF International | Bio

The Foreign Supplier Verification Program Rule (FSVP) requires businesses that import food from foreign suppliers to assume more responsibility for the safety of the products they bring into the market. Customers and importers will be required to become their own risk managers and ensure that imported products comply with FDA standards for preventative controls. Gain insight into how SQF supplier approval requirements align with the FSVP program. Discover best practices for developing a supplier risk assessment program that complies with both SQF and FSVP and learn how to assess and mitigate any gaps in your current program. Take home ideas for developing your own risk-based supplier approval program.

A Recall Plan: Be Prepared or Be Sorry

Roger Roeth, Executive Technical Officer, EAGLE Certification Group | Bio

Recalls continue to plague the food industry. Will you be prepared if it happens to you? Find out in this valuable session, where you’ll gain insight into the key elements of a robust recall and withdrawal program and discover if you measure up. Learn from real-life case studies how to avoid common failures in a recall plan, understand the difference between a mock recall and a trace exercise and equip yourself with the key tools to perform and document a successful mock exercise that will prepare you for a real-life situation.

Hit the "Easy" Button: Introducing a Faster, Smarter and Easier Audit Experience

Karen Sickles, Marketing Director, ReposiTrak, Park City Group | Bio
Dylan Calmes, Specialist SQFI IT Systems, Safe Quality Food Institute

ReposiTrak and SQFI have partnered to make audits easier and faster for suppliers, certifying bodies and auditors.  Pilots have proven  that audits are now completed in half the time.  Join this session to learn about all of the upgrades that have been made to improve the SQF Assessment Database user experience, from registration to the audit process, including the uploading of results and improved reporting.

Workshop: Problem Solving Solutions Beyond The 5-Whys and The Fishbone Diagram

Tammie Van Buren, TreeHouse Private Brands | Bio

Do you feel as if your problem-solving process could use a make-over?  Are you stuck in a rut, using the same tools to approach all problems? Attend this session to get acquainted with problem- solving tools that go beyond the fishbone diagram and 5 Whys. Learn how to prioritize problems, understand the issue, get to the root cause of the problem and eliminate it.  Discuss solutions for improved implementation and reoccurrence prevention, discover a variety of useful problem-solving tools and be exposed to real-life situations where they can be implemented.

The What, Why and How of SQF Retail/Wholesale Grocery Certification | RET

Gina R. (Nicholson) Kramer, RS/REHS – Executive Director, Savour Food Safety International, Inc. | Bio

The SQF Retail/Wholesale Grocery GFSI Certification is an industry-driven initiative of continuous improvement in food safety management systems to ensure confidence in the delivery of safe food to consumers worldwide. It provides a “Gold Standard” for retailers as a foundation to further food safety initiatives. This session will give you a basic overview of what the code is and how to design and implement it

Intentional Adulteration of Food: What Would YOU Do? (2-Hour Workshop) | RET

Rod Wheeler, Founder and CEO of the Global Food Defense Institute, Senior Law Enforcement Contributor/Crime Analyst, Fox News Channel. | Bio

Your food facility has been comprised. Someone, whether internally or externally,  has deliberately tampered with your products and you're in crisis mode. What do you do mitigate the damage?  Where do you start with your investigation? Whom do you notify at FDA or FBI?  What do you tell your employees and customers and when? Do you need to do a recall and when can you consider this crisis "over."  Using a real-life case study,  discuss these questions and share your ideas during this engaging 2-hour workshop designed to help prepare you to handle and mitigate a product tampering crisis.

FDA's Inspector-to-Investigator Shift: Managing Your Risk & Liability | RET

Shawn Stevens, Legal Counsel, Food Industry Lawyer, Food Industry Counsel LLC | Bio
Jeff Chilton, SQF Auditor, VP of Professional Services, Alchemy Systems | Bio

Following the recent Peanut Corporation of America decision, the FDA has overhauled its approach to inspections, shifting the role of an inspector to the role of investigator. This session provides an overview of the new regulatory structure, guidance concerning risk management, and information on protecting your company and your team members from personal liability. Attendees will walk away with a deeper understanding of the high stakes involved in personal liability for food safety issues, and understand how to handle future FDA assessments to mitigate risks.

The Role of PCQI in an SQF System | FSMA

Presenter: Gary Smith, Director, Food Safety Systems, Eurofins Scientific | Bio

Dyane Burke, Senior Director, Food Safety and Quality Audits, ConAgra Foods, Inc. | Bio
Jeff Chilton, SQF Auditor, VP of Professional Services, Alchemy Systems | Bio
Tatiana Lorca, Senior Manager of Food Safety Education and Training, Ecolab
| Bio

Under new FSMA rules going into effect in late 2016, food facilities are required to have a written food safety plan managed by a Preventative Controls Qualified Individual (PCQI) who has the appropriate training and experience. What does this mean for an SQF Practitioner? Do they qualify as a PCQI or are other qualifications and training required? What is the difference between the two? Get clarification on the role of the PCQI in relation to the SQF Practitioner and advice on how to comply with PCQI requirements. Then participate in a panel of SQF stakeholders to discuss how an SQF plan aids in FSMA compliance, best practices for FDA assessment and potential new training requirements.

Leveraging The Power of Your SQF Assessment Database

Neil Bogart, SQF Practitioner, Assistant Vice President Quality Systems, Red Diamond, Inc | Bio

What if you could leverage SQFI’s main assessment database to not only manage your audit results in a more efficient, smarter and faster way, but also to save time and money by automating your recordkeeping? What if you could keep all your vendors’ documentation and audit results in one place? What if your new system could make reporting for your annual audit a snap, by providing your auditor with instant access to your records? During this case study, an SQF-certified supplier will demonstrate how he has leveraged ReposiTrak, the system that powers the SQF assessment database, to solve challenges with compliance management. You’ll take home valuable tips on how you too can leverage the power of your assessment database to meet audit requirements while further reducing brand risk throughout your supply chain.

Best Training Methods for Fresh and Fresh-Cut Produce in Retail Environments | RET

Jay Neal, Ph.D., Assistant Provost, Academic Affairs and Operations, University of Houston  | Bio

The retail food industry has worked diligently with regulatory agencies to develop and implement food safety training materials for supervisors and managers; however, we have not seen significant reductions in food borne illnesses from produce. Is the training material too generic for employees who work with fresh and fresh-cut produce and does it fail to change their attitudes or behavior? Get answers and compare behavior-based to knowledge-based food safety training to determine which is most valuable in terms of time, money and effort.

Great ExSPECtations: The Ins and Outs of Supplier Specifications | RET

Jorge Acosta, SQF Auditor, Director of Professional Services, Alchemy Systems | Bio

The integrity of food products starts with high quality raw materials. Let your supplier specifications be one of your gateways to success. By attending this session, you’ll understand the elements of a robust supplier approval process, be able to conduct and document risk assessment for new suppliers and know how to identify and respond to the types of errors found in supplier specifications. Using real world examples from an auditor’s perspective, you’ll learn how to implement a system to ensure that your suppliers measure up to your quality and safety standards, meet SQF requirements, and fulfill customer expectations.

Inside FSMA's Produce Safety Rule |  FSMA

Samir Assar, Director for the Division of Produce Safety, US Food and Drug Administration Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (FDA CFSAN)
Bob Whitaker, Chief Science & Technology Officer, Produce Marketing Association | Bio
Carrie Porterfield, Director, Division of Fruit and Vegetables, Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services | Bio
Michelle Danyluk, Associate Professor and Extension Specialist, Food Microbiology, University of Florida | Bio
Amy Duda-Kinder, Senior Director Food Safety & Sustainability, Duda Farm Fresh Foods | Bio
Michael Roberson, Director of Corporate Quality Assurance, Publix Super Markets, Inc.| Bio

The FSMA Produce Safety Rule establishes science-based minimum standards for the safe growing, harvesting, packing, and holding of fruits and vegetables grown for human consumption. With its implementation comes new regulatory challenges that will impact on-the-farm food safety programs. Join this informative session to gain understanding of how the rule will impact the produce industry, regulators and academics engaged with food safety training and research.

Food Safety Has No Borders

Lizeth Quintero Posadas, General Manager of Mexico Calidad Suprema | Bio

México Calidad Suprema is a nonprofit organization composed of producers, packers,
and their organizations. Learn how this organization works together with the Mexican
Government to boost productivity and competitiveness of the agribusiness by being an
umbrella of private certifications. Hear how MCS helps Mexican growers to comply with
SENASICA´s national food safety regulations and with any standard recognized by the Global
Food Safety initiative (GFSI).

The Rise of the Conscious Consumer: Meeting Demands for Ethical Retailing | RET

Stephen Brown, President, Certified Safety Resources | Bio
Robert Garfield, Chief Food Safety Assessment Officer & SVP, SQFI | Bio

Consumers want safe, quality products, but they also care about employee welfare and environmental conditions throughout the supply chain. As such, consumers are putting increasing pressure on retailers to implement ethical sourcing practices and be more transparent about their supply chains. Get an overview of SQFI’s voluntary Ethical Sourcing Program and how grocery retailers can benefit from it. You’ll learn why requiring suppliers to be assessed against the Program can help you respond to consumer demands for more transparency and enhance your ethical sourcing capabilities while keeping an eye on the bottom line.

It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad (Social Media) World

Amy Philpott, Vice President, Watson Green, LLC | Bio

Social media can’t be ignored - for better or worse, in good times and bad, until unfriending and unfollowing do us part. For food companies, it can be a powerful marketing, sales, relationship-building tool, or it can be an even more powerful destroyer of brands and reputations. Explore the state of social media and the ups and downs of using it to communicate about food.

Workshop: Crisis Communication Strategies For Technical Food Safety Staff

Amy Philpott, Vice President, Watson Green, LLC | Bio

As an expert in food safety, you may feel you have nothing to do with your company’s communications strategy. However, technical food safety staff are critical to a company’s ability to communicate effectively before, during and after a food safety crisis; in addition to communicating with regulators, they influence consumer, customer and even employee communications. This hands-on workshop will focus on food safety communications best practices and help prepare technical staff for the role they will play in a food safety crisis.

Best Practices for an Effective Pathogen Control Program | FSMA | RET

Doug Marshall, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer, Eurofins Microbiology Laboratories, Inc. | Bio

Proper implementation of FSMA required preventive controls requires a sound understanding of best practices to control pathogens in a number of different food processing scenarios. Understanding the nature of Salmonella and Listeria under such varied situations is key to designing and executing proper control programs.  Discover the essential scientific elements for successful pathogen control and review the value of using advanced microbiological test methods for program validation and routine verification. Participants will leave with the skills they need to be able to structure raw material and supplier verification programs, understand how to validate and verify pathogen kill steps and communicate the fundamentals for effective environmental monitoring programs.

Effective Supplier/Retailer Partnerships | RET

David Guilhaus, Supply Chain Food Safety Manager, Publix Markets | Bio
Holly Mockus, Senior Product Manager, Alchemy Systems | Bio
LeAnn Chuboff – Senior Technical Director, SQFI | Bio
Neil Bogart, SQF Practitioner, Assistant Vice President Quality Systems, Red Diamond, Inc | Bio

As a supplier, you must provide the retailer with sufficient information and timely communications to remain a vendor of choice. As a retailer, your careful attention to suppliers is crucial to providing consumers with quality products. Learn to implement effective procedures, risk management techniques, and rapid communications in order to protect both public health and your brand.

Measuring Business Culture - The BCA Approach

Bill McBride, Former Chair, Auditor Competence Scheme Committee, GFSI – SQFI Asia Pacific Representative, SQFI | Bio

"Culture" - it's the buzzword du jour. Yet, while the need for a positive organizational culture is well-recognized, many lack the knowledge of how to go about identifying and changing the culture within their own businesses. Learn how a business culture assessment model that uses a guided organizational self-assessment approach can help businesses measure the “health” of their business culture, identify gaps and focus on improvement. Discover how this approach can document and assess the most important attitudes and behaviors generated by business leaders and measure the implementation and effectiveness of improvement initiatives within the business over time.

Safe Food Transportation under FSMA: What You Need To Know to Comply | FSMA | RET

Tom Scollard, Vice President of Dedicated Contract Carriage, Penske Logistics | Bio

Through real-world examples, this informative session will present best practices and actionable insights for the safe transportation of perishable goods in compliance with FSMA requirements. Learn what you need to know about vehicle design and maintenance, temperature control, training, records and retention, establishing written procedures and clarifying responsibilities, information exchange to avoid contamination and enhancing visibility throughout the supply chain and discover how to benchmark your operations against FSMA regulations

What’s Your “EQ?”:  Assessing and Mitigating Your “Exposure Quotient”

Melanie Neumann, President, Neumann Risk Services, LLC | Bio

Do you know your company’s “EQ” - its legal, regulatory and brand reputation exposure risk? In this session you’ll discuss practical, objective and measurable criteria and factors that will help you evaluate your organization’s Exposure Quotient and build effective risk management strategies to mitigate them. Discuss risk assessment in the supply chain, food fraud evaluation and the importance of incorporating food safety culture into your programs.

Food Safety Challenges in the Spice Industry

Dan Kastor, Director of Food Safety & Quality Systems, McCormick & Company, Inc.| Bio

Spices have been used for centuries for both flavor as well as preservation of foods. In the US, consumption levels have grown by 0.5 lbs per decade over the past 50 years and today, 86% of households use fresh or dried herbs, spices and seasonings. The majority of spices are imported, increasing the potential risk for microbial contamination, adulteration and filth and presenting a myriad of other food safety challenges. Get an overview of the risks and challenges that face the spice industry and discover how SQF certification can help mitigate them.

Getting Ahead of Food Fraud: Practical Tools and Solutions

Dr. Jeff Moore, Director of Science, United States Pharmacopeial Convention | Bio

Recent high profile food fraud incidents such as those involving horse meat, melamine and spices along with new regulatory and GFSI requirements to implement food fraud mitigation plans have increased focus on mitigating supply chain risks within the food industry. Yet,  many experienced and capable food safety professionals have found that their training and understanding of Food Safety is not directly applicable to addressing the issue of food fraud.   Gain insight into food fraud mitigation and  learn why it is important for brand protection, food safety, regulatory compliance, and certification and why it requires a different approach towards mitigation than other food protection areas.  Discover what tools are available to help perform a vulnerability assessment and create an EMA preventive control plan.

Why Listeria Won't Go Away | RET

Martin Wiedmann, Ph.D., Gellert Family Professor in Food Safety, Cornell University | Bio

With the emergence of newly recognized species and unusual strains, current L. monocytogenes and Listeria spp. assays and detection methods may need to be re-evaluated. And, as the worldwide consumption of Ready-To-Eat foods increases, so does the importance of recognizing possible new food and environmental sources of L. monocytogenes, not previously considered a concern. Get a critical update on the most recent microbial food safety research on Listeria monocytogenes and discuss the implications for food retailers and suppliers by leading food researcher, Dr. Martin Wiedmann.

The EMP Challenge: Taking Your Environmental Monitoring Program to The Next Level | RET

Timothy A. Freier, Division Vice President of Scientific Affairs, Mérieux NutriSciences | Bio
Brent Wallen, Director Business Development, Enviromap | Bio

Product contamination in the food processing environment remains one of the most frequent causes of product recalls. In our heightened regulatory environment, plant management teams are charged with understanding the microbial condition of their plants and taking progressive action to ensure product safety. This session will help you identify areas of needed improvement in your existing environmental monitoring programs. You’ll take home the necessary tools and knowledge to identify the key safety components found in effective EMPs and to apply sound EMP principles in your processing environment.

Is Your Allergy Program Up To the Test?

Kris Middleton, Technical Manager, Eurofins Scientific | Bio
Doug Marshall, PhD,  Chief Scientific Officer, Eurofins Microbiology Laboratories, Inc | Bio

What are the best testing methods for validating allergen cross contact controls and how can these programs be effectively verified? What is the difference between allergen verification and validation? What types of situations would NOT be a concern and what are the best storage practices for preventing cross-contamination ? Discuss these and other important questions surrounding allergen control and take home valuable tips for creating and implementing an effective allergen control plan at your facility.

  Food Safety GPS: How to Navigate the Political Landscape within an Organization | RET

Gina R. (Nicholson) Kramer, RS/REHS – Executive Director, Savour Food Safety International, Inc. | Bio

What do you need to get buy-in from leadership in order to create an organization-wide food safety culture? Join a panel of seasoned retail food safety professionals as they discuss their experiences, share best practices and explain the importance of garnering business acumen, understanding culture and navigating the political landscape. Discover which social and leadership characteristics are necessary to implement a food safety plan. Take home valuable guidance on communicating and socializing food safety programs and justifying food safety beyond the science.

Sanitary Transportation of Food:  Tools for Implementing Industry Best Practices to Achieve Compliance

Corey Rosenbusch, President & CEO, Global Cold Chain Alliance | Bio

The FDA’s recent release of the Final Rule for the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food (STF) lays out compliance requirements for shippers, loaders, carriers and receivers of perishable foods. The FDA, while requiring compliance with the new rule, stresses the importance of using Industry Best Practices as pre-requisite programs for designing, implementing and recording food transport activities.

Industry experts have come together to develop a best practice guide and compliance checklist to help you better understand and comply with the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food rule.  Whether your biggest concern is pre-loading, trailer inspection procedures, or proper receiving protocols, learn how to develop a plan that surpasses FDA’s requirements and take home tools and resources necessary to protect and improve your refrigerated transportation operations.

Food Sector Category Roundtables

These peer-driven discussion roundtables will give you the opportunity to ask questions, discuss issues and share best practices with fellow food safety professionals practicing within your food      sector category. Approximately 18-20 FSCs will be represented based on the composition of the attendee list.Click here to see which ones.

Meet Me in Margaritaville®
Social Event at Jimmy Buffett’s® Margaritaville® at Universal CityWalk™

Escape to Jimmy Buffett’s® Margaritaville® at Universal CityWalk™ for a not-to-be-missed party. An evening of fun, food and entertainment awaits you. Enjoy the laid back island attitude of music legend Jimmy Buffett along with décor and themed bars inspired by some of his most popular songs. There’ll be plenty of live music, libations and tasty food offerings throughout the evening. RSVP when you register. We hope to see you there!

Ambassador Breakfast (by invitation only)

First-timers and volunteers participating in the SQF Conference Ambassador Program are welcome to join this informal get-together over breakfast. Meet other first-timers, get to know your Ambassador learn what to expect at the conference.

Coffee and Conversation

Meet new people and say hello to old friends at this pre-conference mixer. A light continental breakfast will be served. Download more information.


Captain Mark Kelly

Commander of Space Shuttle Endeavour's Final Mission & Space and Aviation Contributor for NBC News/MSNBC

Highly decorated American astronaut, Captain Mark Kelly continues to secure his place in history, partnering with his identical twin brother, Scott from the ground in a historic yearlong expedition and unprecedented NASA study on how space affects the human body. As the Space and Aviation Contributor for NBC News and MSNBC, he has provided the world with insider perspective and intimate coverage of the groundbreaking yearlong experiment.

Already an experienced aviator and retired US Navy Captain, Kelly began his career as an astronaut in 1996. During his illustrious career with NASA, he spent more than 50 days in space and commanded both the Space Shuttle Endeavour, including its final flight in May 2011, and Space Shuttle Discovery, and is one of only two individuals who have visited the International Space Station on four different occasions.

Kelly is also a #1 New York Times best-selling author and a founder of World View Enterprises, a company pioneering a new frontier at the edge of space.

In January 2011, Kelly became the center of international attention after the assassination attempt on his wife, former US Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. Their story captivated the nation and resulted in the couple becoming an unequivocal symbol of strength and perseverance.

Curtis Zimmerman

Author and Motivational Speaker

As a speaker and author, Curtis Zimmerman has impacted over 1 million people around  the globe with his life-changing message. He  expertly accelerates culture change, energizes organizations and inspires greater accountability to keep companies competitive and focused.Audiences connect with Curtis through his high energy, interactive style, and approachable manner. He incorporates the skills he gained from over twenty-five years in the entertainment industry into his powerful programs. Zimmerman is a highly sought after speaker among Fortune 500 companies, the United States Air Force, national trade associations, universities, and non-profits.

He is the author of Life at Performance Level, I Believe...What do you Believe?, Keys to Success in College and Life, and a contributing author to Pillars of Success and Lessons from the Road.

Rod Wheeler

Founder and CEO, The Global Food Defense Institute, Senior Law Enforcement Contributor/Crime Analyst, Fox News Channel.

Homeland Security and Global Food Defense and Law Enforcement Expert Rod Wheeler is the founder and CEO of the Global Food Defense Institute which provides educational, training and certification programs for the food, agricultural and chemical industries to ensure confidence and protection and to guard against intentional contamination or sabotage. He is a former “all-star” Homicide Detective with the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington DC as well as an investigator for the State of Ohio Attorney General.  Rod also serves as a Senior Crime/Law Enforcement and Domestic Terrorism Expert for the Fox News Channel since 2002.

Rod is a nationally recognized expert in criminal investigation, law enforcement, Food Defense (FSMA), Food Fraud and a motivational speaker. Rod is an active member of the American Society of Criminology, Association of Contingency Planning, National Association of Crime Analyst, National Blacks in Criminal Justice Association, The National Association of Investigative Specialist, The American Society of Law Enforcement Trainers, The International Public Safety Association and the past chairman of the Food Defense Security Council of ASIS International.

Rod has assisted dozens of US based company’s develop Global Security Plans and Procedures and training on these procedures. Recent clients has consisted of Starbucks, PepsiCo, RJ Reynolds Tobacco, Frito-Lay, ConAgra, Lifeline Foods and others. In 2010 Rod was presented with a high-level honor from the United States Army Veterinary service for providing guidance and training to over 200 military personnel for assisting the US Military develop Food Defense programs and guidelines for its vendors, suppliers and military bases around the world.

David Sax

Author of The Tastemakers: Why We’re Crazy for Cupcakes but Fed-up with Fondue

David Sax is a freelance writer specializing in business and food. His writing has appeared regularly in the New York Times, Bloomberg Businessweek, Saveur, The Grid Toronto, and other publications. His latest book The Tastemakers: Why We’re Crazy for Cupcakes but Fed-up with Fondue takes an in-depth look into the people and forces that create and shape food trends, and shows us why that matters more than ever. He is also the author of Save the Deli: In Search of Perfect Pastrami, Crusty Rye, and the Heart of Jewish Delicatessen and has won a James Beard Award for writing and literature. David's next book, The Revenge of Analog: Welcome to the Post-Digital Economy will be published in November, 2016.

Dr. Marc Allard

Marc W. Allard received his Ph.D. in biology in 1990 from Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.  Dr. Allard was the Louis Weintraub Associate Professor of Biology (and Genetics) at George Washington University (Washington, DC) for 14 years from 1994 to 2008.  He has had appointments to the Visiting Scientists Program both at the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Counterterrorism and Forensic Science Research Unit (CTFSRU) and in the Chem Bio Sciences Unit (CBSU) for 8 years, where he assisted in the anthrax investigations and human genetics data-basing.  Dr. Allard joined FDA's Office of Regulatory Science and the Division of Microbiology in November 2008 and he is using DNA sequence information from the genomes of food borne pathogens to identify unique single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), SAAPs and whole proteins to rapidly identify the various strains of bacteria, particularly Salmonella, E. coli, Shigella and Listeria.  Dr. Allard specializes in both phylogenetic analysis and bioinformatics methods, as well as the wet laboratory methods which generate this genetic information.

Neil Bogart

Neil Bogart is Assistant Vice President Quality Systems at Red Diamond, Inc. Neil joined the company in 2011 as their newly created Quality Systems Manager, in which role he took the lead in getting the company SQF Level 2 certified in his first year and Level 3 certified in his third year. He is also the 2016 President of the Alabama Association for Food Protection (AAFP), the 2016 International Association for Food Protection (IAFP) Affiliate Council Board Secretary and AAFPs affiliate delegate to IAFP. Previously he worked at Randolph Associates as a Food Safety Consultant, specializing in food safety program development, HACCP, training, sanitation systems and development and  also at Ecolab – Kay Chemical. Earlier in his career, Neil spent 12 years in the restaurant industry, four of which as a certified chef and ran his own personal chef and catering business. He holds a Food Science degree from Mississippi State University.

Jorge Acosta

Jorge Acosta serves as Director of Professional Services for Alchemy Systems. Jorge is a certified auditor and trainer for SQF, BRC Food and FSSC 22000. He has 20+ years of food industry experience and has consulted and audited food companies in 25 countries. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in  Food Science.

Stephen Brown

Steve has over 30 years of EHS experience in manufacturing and 6 years of EHS consulting experience. He has held positions at the facility, division, business group and corporate levels, including 20 years of global responsibilities. Steve’s professional focus includes a strong emphasis on the role of culture as the foundation for HSE excellence, coupled with management systems and behavior-based processes as the mechanisms for continual improvement. His management systems experience includes implementation, training and/or auditing for Responsible Care, OSHA Voluntary Protection Program, OSHA Process Safety Management / EPA Risk Management Programs, company-specific EHS management system schemes, ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001 and ISO 9001. Steve co-authored the newly- accredited SQFI Ethical Sourcing (ES) Standard, is the lead trainer for ES auditor training and was the first auditor approved by SQFI to audit against the requirements of the ES Standard.

Dyane Burke

Dyane Burke is currently the Senior Director of Food Safety and Quality Audits at ConAgra Foods. Dyane has been with ConAgra Foods for over 17 years, and has over 24 years of experience in the food industry.  In her current role, Dyane's and her team's responsibilities include the internal auditing of all ConAgra Foods plant locations, co-manufacturing facilities, and suppliers (based on risk). The Food Safety and Quality Audit Team works closely with plant locations to help drive continuous improvement with regards to food safety, quality, and sanitation.  During her tenure at ConAgra, she has held positions of increasing responsibility in supply chain, safety, and food safety/quality specializing in the areas of dairy, aseptic processing, and canning.  Prior to working for ConAgra Foods she spent over 7 years in the RTE Meat Processing industry and Vegetable Production/Canning industry. Dyane has a B.S. degree in Food Science from Purdue University. She is an ASQ Certified HACCP Auditor and Quality Auditor. She actively participates and supports GFSI, and is currently serving as a member on the SQFI Conference Planning Committee.

Jeff Chilton

Jeff Chilton serves as VP of Professional Services at Alchemy Systems. Jeff is a PCQI lead instructor and SQF auditor. For over 18 years, Jeff has consulted with hundreds of food manufacturing firms to develop and enhance their food safety and quality programs. Jeff is a contributing writer for Meat and Poultry Magazine and has spoken on food safety and quality topics for numerous trade associations.



LeAnn Chuboff

LeAnn has over 25 years of foodservice experience specializing in supply chain food safety and quality assurance. Currently she is the Senior Technical Director for the Safe Quality Food (SQF) Institute responsible for the technical elements of the SQF program, including the development, maintenance and technical support of the SQF code and supporting materials. Prior to working at the SQF Institute, LeAnn worked for the National Restaurant Association Solutions as the Director of Science and Regulatory Relations. In this role, she was responsible for the technical accuracy of the ServSafe food safety program and developed program and services on food safety and food defense to fit with all segments of the restaurant industry. LeAnn has also worked for Long John Silver’s and Boston Market in corporate quality assurance, where she developed food safety and vendor approval programs. LeAnn graduated from Iowa State University with a B.S. in Food Science and is active with many organizations including GFSI, the Conference for Food Protection and the International Association for Food Protection. She sits on several committees in an effort to enhance policy and develop programs for the industry to help protect public health.

Michelle Danyluk

Dr. Michelle Danyluk is an Associate Professor of Food Safety and Microbiology in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, at the University of Florida.  She is situated in the Citrus Research and Education Center, in Lake Alfred, Fl.  Upon accepting her position at the University of Florida in 2007, she fulfilled her life goal of living with palm trees. Her current research and extension interests include microbial food safety and quality, emphasizing the microbiology of fruit juices, fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts.  Her primary research focuses on Salmonella in produce and nuts, along with the produce product and processing environments, its movement within these environments, and the subsequent implications for public health.  Michelle’s extension program includes involvement teaching FSMA, HACCP, GAPS and other specialized food safety, security or beverage processing programs to stakeholders.  Michelle has been awarded a Research Foundation Professorship Award, an Excellence Award for Assistant Professors and the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Richard Jones Outstanding New Faculty Research Award from the University of Florida.  She also received the Larry Beuchat Young Researcher Award in 2010 and the Presidents Recognition Award in 2011 and 2013 from the International Association for Food Protection. Michelle received a Bachelors degree in Microbiology from the University of Alberta, a Masters Degree in Food Science and Technology from the University of Georgia and her Ph.D. in Food Science from the University of California at Davis.

Amy Duda Kinder

Amy Duda Kinder is the Director of Food Safety & Sustainability for Duda Farm Fresh Foods (DFFF), a full service grower, packer, shipper, marketer, importer and exporter of fresh fruits and vegetables and fresh-cut vegetables operating in FL, CA, AZ, MI, NC and GA. In her position Amy is responsible for the development and administration of all food safety procedures and policies administered by DFFF for all products grown and packaged under the Dandy label. In this operational role, Amy has 12 years of food safety experience for DFFF.  Amy holds a bachelor's degree in Home Economics Education.

Timothy Freier

Dr. Timothy A. Freier is a food microbiologist with over 25 years of experience in applied microbiology and food safety.  He is currently Division Vice President of Scientific Affairs and Microbiology, North America, at Mérieux NutriSciences and was previously Senior Director, Global Food Safety Innovation at Cargill.  He has published several  journal articles, book chapters and patents, and has given numerous invited presentations on a variety of food safety-related topics.  He was a co-developer and instructor for the American Meat Institute (AMI) “Advanced Listeria Intervention and Control Workshop” and served on AMI’s Scientific Affairs and Grant Review Committees.  Dr. Freier has also served as the Chairperson for Grocery Manufacturer’s Association (GMA) Microbiological Safety Committee, GMA’s Task Force on the Control of Salmonella in Low-Moisture Foods, the International Association for Food Protection (IAFP) Meat and Poultry Professional Development Group, and the IAFP Food Safety Innovation Award Committee.  He is a member of the Sackler Institute’s Technology and Innovation in Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Working Group and serves on the Editorial Advisory Board for Food Safety Magazine.  Dr. Freier has served two terms on the U.S. National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods.  He holds a B.A. in biology and M.S. and Ph.D. in microbiology and conducted postdoctoral work at Oregon State University.

Robert Garfield

Robert Garfield is currently the chief food safety officer and SVP, Food Marketing Institute (FMI) responsible for managing the Safe Quality Food Institute (SQFI), an international food safety and quality management program recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI). Robert spent ten years in the food industry as a plant and production manager.  He worked for United Vintners, a division of Heublein, Inc., a major bottler of California wines, and then for Dairylea, Inc., and Richfood, Inc., both processors of fluid milk and juice products.  For 23 years Robert represented  the food industry to regulatory agencies detailing the  scientific and technical interests of frozen food and dairy. manufacturers.He received a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Cincinnati, where he specialized in marketing and finance, and a Master of Science, Agriculture, from the California State University, Fresno.

David Guilhaus

David Guilhaus has over 15 years of food industry experience including retail, manufacturing, and food service. Since 2008, he has held the position of Supply Chain Food Safety Manager at Publix Super Markets, Inc., and is responsible for developing corporate food safety strategies, validating existing food safety systems across eleven manufacturing facilities and over thirty distribution centers. He is also a member of SQF Technical Advisory Council.

Dan Kastor

Dan Kastor, McCormick & Company, Inc., Sr. Director, Global Food Safety and Quality Systems. He also serves on McCormick’s Global Quality Leadership Council. Prior to his current assignment, he held positions as Director, Quality Assurance for McCormick Asia-Pacific and Director, Quality Assurance for the U.S. Industrial Group. Dan came to McCormick following seventeen years of
factory and corporate headquarters experience with Nestle S.A. He is the past Secretary of the Maryland China Business Council and is active in the Grocery Manufacturers of America (GMA), American Society for Quality (ASQ) and the International Food information Council (IFIC).

Gina Kramer

Gina (Nicholson) Kramer is  Executive Director of Savour Food Safety International, Inc.™ specializing in assisting companies in developing long-term food safety culture and behavior change programs, internal and external food safety communication plans and mentoring food safety professionals. Formerly the Global Director of Retail Food Services for NSF International, she lead NSF’s team of talented retail food safety experts for 3rd party auditing, consulting and technical services for major global retail brands such as Sodexo, HMS Host, T.G.I. Friday’s and Jack in the Box.  As owner/operator of her own organic bakery, Manager Health Promotions at Columbus Public Health, Senior Manager Food Safety & Quality at The Kroger Co., to Global Director Retail Food Services at NSF International, Gina has spread her knowledge and innovative approach of food safety to organizations small and large. Gina holds a Bachelor’s degree in Human Biology and is also a Registered Sanitarian in the state of Ohio and a Registered Environmental Health Specialist through the National Environmental Health Association.

Dr. Tatiana Lorca

Dr. Tatiana A. Lorca is Senior Manager of Food Safety Education and Training for the Food & Beverage division of Ecolab, the global leader in water, hygiene and energy technologies and services. She is in charge of developing audit, training, consulting services and scientific support for the supply chain from farm to fork and working with multiple internal divisions to assure internal staff compliance to international food safety certification programs. Previously, Dr. Lorca served as manager of food safety education and training and manager of supply chain quality assurance. Before joining Ecolab, she held positions at BSI Management Systems Americas, Inc. and the SQF Institute, coordinating and delivering food safety training and certification programs for the Americas. She is a member of the SQFI Technical Advisory Council, a member of the International Association for Food Protection, the Consumer Goods Forum Global Food Safety Initiative Technical Working Groups, a member of both the advisory council of the Food Science Department and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Advisory Council at Virginia Tech. Dr. Lorca graduated with a master’s and doctoral degree in Food Science and Technology from Virginia Tech. She is a registered SQF Consultant and Trainer, an Approved Training Provider  for the BRC Food program, a BRC Food consultant, HACCP and FSSC 22000 trainer and holds a Food Safety HACCP Manager certification from the National Registry of Food Safety Professionals.

Dr. Douglas Marshall

Dr. Marshall is Chief Scientific Officer with Eurofins Microbiology Laboratories, Inc., a division of the global life sciences company Eurofins Scientific. He also is cofounder and Director of the Food Safety Institute, LLC, an integrated consulting and analytical services company affiliated with Eurofins. He currently holds Adjunct Professor positions with Colorado State University and Florida State College. His former positions include Associate Dean and Professor of Public Health, College of Natural and Health Sciences, University of Northern Colorado, Adjunct Professor with the Colorado School of Public Health, Professor of Food Science, Nutrition, and Health Promotion at Mississippi State University, Assistant Professor of Food Science at Louisiana State University, Contributing Editor for the peer-reviewed scientific journal Food Microbiology, and four consecutive terms on the editorial board of the Journal of Food Protection. He is a frequent consultant to NIH, WHO, FAO, USDA, and other government agencies and private companies.  With over 250 publications and over 150 invited presentations, his scientific research and outreach interests focus on improving the microbiological quality and safety of foods. He has been the recipient of a number of awards for his scholarly efforts the International Association for Food Protection Educator Award. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Food Technologists, where he has previously served as chair of two divisions and two regional sections, member of the Board of Directors, an Inaugural Member and Chair of the International Food Science Certification Commission, and a founding member of the Global Traceability Center.

Bill McBride

Bill McBride is the Principal and Managing Director of Foodlink Management Services and has thirty years' experience in food safety and quality assurance in the global food industry. He has worked with a number of premier organizations in the food and beverage industries within Australia and internationally as a consultant, trainer, auditor or certification manager. He also serves as The Asia Pacific representative for the SQF Institute and is Chairman of the GFSI Auditor Competence Scheme Committee. Previously, Bill was the Vice President of Business Development for Advancing Food Safety Pty Ltd, a food safety training organization, General Manager Food Division for NCSI and Chairman of the personnel certification body QSA International. He is the project manager and author of Food Safety Auditor Competency - Proposed National Competency Criteria and Management Systems and Guidelines for Implementation of Eurepgap (GlobalGAP) in Australia for the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. Bill is also a former accredited lead food safety auditor training provider and former accredited BRC trainer, an IFS trained auditor and Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) accredited training provider.

Jennifer McCreary

Jennifer has over 30 years of experience in food manufacturing, food safety and auditing.  As the Technical Manager of Training and Education Services she tailors and delivers courses in employee hygiene and food safety, GMP and Prerequisite Programs, allergen management in food processing, CCP training, quality assurance, food safety for managers and supervisors, sanitation, pest control and supply chain management.  Jennifer holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology from the University of Guelph. 

Kris Middleton

Kris Middleton is a Technical Manager at Eurofins Food Safety Systems, where he oversees the SQF, FSSC/ISO 22000, and unaccredited food and packaging programs.  He is also a past member of the SQF Technical Advisory Committee. He has over a decade of experience in food safety and auditing. In his past roles, he monitored compliance with all regulatory standards and acted as a technical expert for pest control. Kris’s experiences have enabled him to obtain an extensive list of professional audit certifications including a high-risk certified auditor for SQF in 11 Food Sector Categories, FSSC 22000, ISO 220000, NASC and SF/SF qualified auditor.  Kris’s involvement, expertise and passion for the food safety industry enables him to be a consistent, effective auditor for suppliers while providing a true demonstration of the respective auditing and certification scheme. Kris earned his Honors Bachelor of Science in Toxicology from the University of Toronto. He speaks fluent English and French.

Holly Mockus

Holly Mockus is Senior Product Manager at Alchemy Systems. She has over 30 years of experience in the food industry and has worked with ConAgra, Kellogg, Sara Lee, and Alchemy Systems. She has held positions in food safety, quality assurance, sanitation, and plant regulatory affairs as well as a frequent speaker and author on the importance of recordkeeping and documentation in the food industry. She was the 2013 recipient of the SQF Outstanding Achievement Award and is passionate about the importance of training in the food industry.


Jeff Moore

Jeff is the Director of Science for the Food Program Unit at US Pharmacopeial Convention (USP). Previously Jeff was a Senior Scientific Liaison for USP’s food program and led a number of efforts on food including developing testing standards and reference materials for food ingredients, the USP Food Fraud Database and USP’s recently published Food Fraud Mitigation Guidance. He also led a multinational collaborative research effort involving more than 15 organizations on rapid analytical technologies to detect economic adulteration, and was the lead scientific liaison to USP’s Expert Panel on food adulteration. Jeff is USP’s lead representative to the Codex Committee on Food Additives. He has a background in food science with more than 10 years of experience in the areas of food ingredient testing standards, food adulteration detection methods and systems approaches to prevention, food chemical safety, and international food additive regulations.

Dr. Jay Neal

Dr. Jay Neal is the assistant provost at the University of Houston Sugar Land campus. Prior to his current assignment he served as an associate professor at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management at the University of Houston. He received his PhD in Food Microbiology at Texas A&M University. Dr. Neal taught undergraduate Food Safety and Sanitation and graduate Food Service Systems for fourteen years. He continues to conduct research and his current research focuses on effective behavior-based standard operating procedures for fresh and fresh cut produce. Jay serves as a member of the Executive Board for the Conference for Food Protection. He is also the chair of the retail and foodservice professional development group for the International Association of Food Protection.

Melanie Neumann

Melanie Neumann is the President and Global Food Safety Attorney of Neumann Risk Services, LLC, (NRS) a food law firm that helps companies manage risks where law, food safety,  science, and the brand intersect. She has over 18 years of experience helping food and beverage companies understand legal, regulatory and business risks relating to food laws and food safety. Melanie focuses on helping clients prepare for the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) as well as USDA regulations, and better assess and establish supply chain risk controls.   She also focuses on recall readiness and response, labeling, claims substantiation and building best in class risk-based food safety programs and maturity models.  Melanie is also passionate about international food safety and  has been involved in the GFSI Global Markets Program Strategy Committee for the Global Food Safety Initiative.  Previously, Melanie served as in-house legal counsel for multi-national food companies such as Hormel Foods and The Schwan Food Company, and as Vice President, General Counsel for a global recall and crisis management firm. She was also instrumental in designing a food safety consulting practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers and was partner and Executive VP in The Acheson Group, a food safety and consulting firm.

Amy Philpott

As vice president of crisis services at Watson Green LLC, Amy Philpott helps clients in the raw agricultural and processed food industries use traditional and digital communication to protect their brands, reputations and business relationships in both domestic and foreign markets. In addition to product recalls and recall planning, Amy has helped companies communicate about other volatile issues such as labor concerns, biotechnology, pesticide residues and negative financial reports. She has also acted as the primary spokesperson for companies facing public scrutiny. Before joining Watson Green she managed communications for the United Fresh Produce Association, handling the association’s communications during several high-profile, food borne illness outbreaks.  In 2016, Amy co-developed and presented the social media workshop at the JIFSAN 2016 Annual Symposium: Communicating Food Risk in an Era of Social Media. She is also a co-contributor to the International Food Information Council’s (IFIC) Food Safety: A Communicator’s Guide to Improving Understanding, first presented in 2015 at a workshop in Beijing, China. In 2013-2014, she served on a joint United Nations FAO and World Health Organization working group that developed a global risk communication guide for food safety.

Carrie Porterfield

Carrie Porterfield is the Director of the Division of Fruit and Vegetables (DFV) with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS).  In this role she oversees the department's inspections of certain fresh fruit, vegetable and peanut packing houses and farms, as well as the licensure of certain fruit dealers, packing houses and processing plants.  Previously, Carrie worked in the banking industry for more than a decade in various leadership positions.  Carrie holds a bachelor’s degree in Agriculture Education and Communication and a Master’s degree in Business Administration. 


Lizeth Quintero Posadas

Lizeth Quintero Posadas is General Manager of Mexico Calidad Suprema, a position she has held since 2007. In this role she has strengthened the benchmark of GLOBAL G.A.P. with Mexico GAP®, expanding to aquaculture, and has achieved the MCS-SQF joint audit among other collaboration agreements with several GFSI recognized schemes. She is a founding partner of national and international food and agriculture organizations, board member of the Mexican Accreditation Entity (EMA) and an active member of the Leaders of the Future Club. Lizbeth has held positions in shipping logistics for companies such as Mayan Fresh Produce and Grupo San Carlos, all specializing in perishables.

Michael Roberson

Michael Roberson is the Director of Corporate Quality Assurance with Publix Super Markets, Inc. of Lakeland, Florida, where he leads a team responsible for food safety, brand integrity, and regulatory compliance programs related to food and product labeling throughout Publix supply chain, manufacturing, distribution, and retail food stores. He is also an active member of AFDO, CFP, IAFP, and IFT where earned his Certified Food Scientist credentials with the inaugural class of food scientists.   In 2009, he testified before the US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions at a hearing entitled, “Keeping America’s Families Safe:  Reforming the Food Safety System.”  Michael is currently a Subject Matter Expert assisting the Food Safety Preventive Control Alliance in the development of guidance and training material for the Food Safety Modernization Act.  He holds a BS degree in Microbiology from Mississippi State University and an MS degree in Food Safety from the College of Veterinary Medicine at Michigan State University.

Roger Roeth

Roger is the Executive Technical Officer for EAGLE. He has over 30 years experience in all aspects of quality assurance, compliance, food safety and food processing manufacturing. He is a certified trainer for ISO 9001 and FSSC 22000 , and a trainer for the SQF auditor class. Roger has conducted over 300 GFSI food safety audits and helped develop the food safety program at EAGLE. Roger holds a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from The Ohio State University. He was selected the SQF Auditor of the Year in 2014.



Corey Rosenbusch

Corey Rosenbusch serves as the President and CEO of the Global Cold Chain Alliance. He provides executive leadership for the association’s operations and divisions, including education and training, marketing and communication, international programs, events, industry affairs, and government relations as well as provides administrative oversight for overall organization operations, including financial performance and personnel. Corey previously lived in Indonesia, where he served as director for Texas A&M University on a cold chain development program under a USDA grant and previously served as an international development consultant in the Ukraine, Indonesia, Afghanistan, and El Salvador in the fields of education and training, agribusiness development, and postharvest horticulture and cold chain development.

Tom Scollard

Tom Scollard is Vice President of Dedicated Contract Carriage for Penske Logistics, where he is responsible for developing and implementing product line growth and profit strategy. Tom brings more than 30 years of transportation and logistics experience to the business. He joined Penske in 2010 as a Strategic Account Executive servicing DCC accounts before being named to his current position.  Prior to joining Penske, he served as Vice President of Sales for Quickway Distribution Services. He also worked at Rollins (prior to its purchase by Penske Truck Leasing) as DCC Director of Logistics Sales and in national account sales. He is a member of the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP) and holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting.

Karen Sickles

Karen Sickles is Director of Marketing at Park City Group, a supply chain visibility company and the parent company of ReposiTrak.  She develops and oversees the execution of marketing programs designed to educate, inform and generate solution interest.   Previously, Karen served in presales, account management and customer service roles.  With over 17 year’s tenure at Park City Group, she is the leading industry expert in a collaborative go-to-market strategy known as scan-based trading.  Karen holds a BS with emphasis in Public Relations and an MS in Integrated Marketing Communications.

Gary Smith

As Director, Food Safety Systems, Gary brings over 20 years of industry experience to his duties at Eurofins Food Safety Systems. He helps food processors, distributors, and packagers of all sizes navigate the complexities of achieving compliance with the latest food standards, creating value beyond certification. In addition, he oversees all aspects of the supply chain business, including vendor, GMP, GLP, and Warehouse/Distribution auditing services and certifications, and all SQF, FAMI-QS/ISFSF, and domestic SFSF work. Gary has worked as a regulator, buyer, supplier, trainer, auditor, head of a certification body, and head of a standard owner. Gary has an extensive list of professional certifications and industry memberships and has been active on a number of policy influencing committees. He currently serves as Chair of the Food Safety Service Providers (FSSP), a member of the Accreditation task force and Guidance document working group, a member of the GFSI, and as a member of the Technical Advisory Committee for SQFI. Gary holds an MS in Environmental Biology from Governors State University and a BS in Animal Sciences from the University of Illinois.

Shawn K. Stevens

Shawn K. Stevens is a global food safety lawyer and founding member of Food Industry Counsel LLC, the only law firm in the world that represents the food industry exclusively.  Shawn works throughout the country and abroad with food industry clients (including the world’s largest food processors, national restaurant chains, and food distributors and grocers) helping them protect their brand by proactively eliminating their food safety risk, complying with complex FDA and USDA food safety regulations, managing recall response efforts, and defending high-profile foodborne illness claims. He speaks regularly to national and international audiences on a wide variety of emerging scientific, regulatory and legal food safety trends, authors dedicated columns for Meatingplace and The National Provisioner, and is quoted regularly by national media publications such as Food Quality and Safety, TIME Magazine, the New York Post, and Corporate Counsel Magazine

Dr. Hilary Thesmar

In her role as the vice president of food safety programs for the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) Dr. Thesmar provides leadership for all food safety programs for FMI’s retail and wholesale members and provides support for members on food safety training programs, recall plans and management, crisis management, research, and overall safety and sanitation programs. She also works with the FMI Foundation on food safety education and research projects. Dr. Thesmar has a Ph.D. in Food Technology from Clemson University, a Master of Science degree in Human Nutrition from Winthrop University, a bachelor’s degree in Food Science from Clemson, and she is a Registered Dietitian. She has over a decade of experience in scientific and regulatory affairs with food trade associations. Dr. Thesmar is an active member of the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the International Association for Food Protection.

Tammie Van Buren

Tammie Van Buren is currently Quality Manager at TreeHouse Private Brands in Princeton, KY where she serves as the SQF Practitioner. She previously served as the Director of External Education Programs for Hopkinsville Community College serving the manufacturing and healthcare sectors. She has been an adjunct instructor for Murray State University teaching courses in Quality Control and System Technology Management for their Master of Science program. She received a Master of Science in Engineering and Technology Management from Murray State University in 2009 and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Campbellsville University. She holds CQT, CQE and CMQ/OE certifications from the American Society for Quality.

Brent Wallen

Brent Wallen is Director of Business Development for EnviroMap, a comprehensive and cutting-edge software solution for environmental monitoring programs. He possesses over 20 years of experience in compliance software and process management of highly regulated industries. Prior to joining EnviroMap in 2012, he served in an executive sales position with CCS-Inc. for 10 years. Over his career, Brent has successfully worked with a wide spectrum of food industry companies on the implementation of documentation and process control systems at their facilities. A graduate of the University of Tennessee - Knoxville, he is a HACCP Certified Manager.

Bob Whitaker

Bob Whitaker is the Chief Science & Technology Officer at the Produce Marketing Association (PMA), where he oversees food safety and technology efforts from field to fork. He has also served as a volunteer leader for the United Fresh Produce Association and as Chairman of the International Fresh-Cut Produce Association (IFPA) Board and has been directly involved in a number of industry and government food safety and technology initiatives. In 2006, Bob was awarded IFPA’s Technical Achievement Award for his work in food safety and product development. He was named to the Executive Committee for the Center for Produce Safety (CPS) in 2007, and served as chairman of the CPS Technical Committee until 2013. Bob still serves as a member of the CPS Technology Committee which oversees the solicitation and awarding of funds for produce food safety research. Previously, Bob served as Vice President for Vegetable Research and Development and Vice President of Product Development at DNA Plant Technology and as Vice President of Product Development and Quality at NewStar, where he developed corporate global food safety programs, spearheaded product development and had operational responsibility for two value-added processing plants. Bob received his Ph.D. in Biology from SUNY Binghamton.

Dr. Martin Wiedmann

Martin Wiedmann is the Gellert Family Professor of Food Safety in the Department of Food Science at Cornell University and also serves as the Director of Graduate Studies for the Field of Food Science and Technology at Cornell. His research interests focus on farm-to-table microbial food quality and food safety and the application of molecular tools to study the biology and transmission of foodborne pathogens and spoilage organisms. He was a member of the Listeria Outbreak Working Group, which was honored by a USDA Secretary’s Award for Superior Service in 2000. Martin received a veterinary degree and a doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from the Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich in 1992 and 1994, and a Ph.D. in Food Science from Cornell in 1997.