With 25 years of experience in the food and beverage industry, I feel right at home as guardian of Dean Food’s corporate reputation. Currently the vice president of corporate communications for Dean Foods, I serve as the chief communications strategist for the company, and as president of the newly created Dean Food Company Foundation. In addition, I manage public affairs and media relations across the country. Most recently, my team won a Silver Anvil for an employee communication effort focusing on change.
I have also had the privilege of speaking at numerous venues, including Tufts University, Arthur Page Society and Northwestern University. I held the positions of vice president of the Arthur Page Society and president of the Chicago Nutrition Association. In this regard, I have participated in FDA panels on food labeling, and on high-profile trade association teams.
The culmination of my past experiences have given me the knowledge and confidence that I now need to understand the relationships between Dean Foods Company and its employees, farmers, media, consumers and community partners.
As you begin your career in public relations, it is important to be observant and interested in each career opportunity that you encounter – the experience and knowledge that you will come away with will be invaluable to your future.
Beginning at the start of my career, here’s a look at my career snapshot…
- The NutraSweet Company
- Sandoz Agro
- Quaker Oats – led the launch of a communications effort – the Gatorade Sports Science Institute – which has become a brick and mortar institution for Quaker, now PepsiCo.
- Ocean Spray – as vice president of corporate communication and public affairs, I led the launch of several award-winning public relations programs to protect the brand and to increase employee engagement during a time of drastic change within the company, and the beverage industry as a whole.
- United Airlines – played an instrumental role in the company’s emergence from a highly publicized bankruptcy with service in corporate communications, employee communications and editorial services.
- Dean Foods, Vice President, Corporate Communications (current)