Director of Marketing, LA & SF Specialty
Santa Fe Springs, California, USA
Executive Vice President, Sun World International, LLC
Coachella, California, USA
Chief Financial Officer, Wm. G. Roe & Sons, Inc.
Winter Haven, Florida, USA
President & CEO, L&M
Raleigh, North Carolina, USA
President, Wonderful Sales
Los Angeles, California, USA
Limpopo, South Africa
Center for Growing Talent by PMA Board of Directors Chair
Vice President, Taylor Farms
Salinas, CA, USA
SVP/GMM Hispanic Merchandising & Customer Experience, Walmart Stores
Bentonville, Arkansas USA
President/CEO, Barkley Ag Enterprises
Yuma, AZ, USA
Watsonville, California, USA
CEO, Xgenex LLC
Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, USA
Sales & Marketing Director, Tropical Pines
Owner/Director, Fresh Produce Marketing Ltd.
Auckland, New Zealand
President/CEO, Red Sun Farms
President/CEO, Naturipe Farms LLC
Salinas, CA, USA
Category Manager - Produce, P.F. Chang's China Bistro
Scottsdale, Arizona, USA
Executive VP & Chief Operations Officer, The Oppenheimer Group
British Columbia, Canada
Vice President of National Procurement Produce, Metro Richelieu
Durham, North Carolina, USA
General Manager, Fresh Foods Sourcing Division, China Resources Vanguard Co.
Marketing Director, Serv. De Merc Imalinx, SA de CV
San Cristobal, Mexico
VP Fresh Produce & Floral, Southeastern Grocers
Jacksonville, Florida, USA
VP and Co-General Manager of Fresh Fruit N.A., Dole Fresh Fruit Co.
Parsippany, New Jersey, USA
VP of Produce & Floral, Grocery Outlet Inc.
Emeryville, California, USA
Manager, Passion Growers, LLC
Miami, Florida, USA
Immokalee, Florida, USA
Vice President, Smith Packing
St . Augustine, Florida, USA
Sunnyvale, California, USA
Chairman of the Group, Joy Wing Mau Group
President/CEO, Wish Farms
Plant City, Florida, USA
Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Robinson Fresh
Eden Prairie, Minnesota, USA
Director of Floral and Blooms Floral Shops, H-E-B
San Antonio, Texas, USA
Cathy Burns joined PMA in December 2013 as President and assumed the CEO position in January 2017. Prior to joining PMA, she spent 30 years in the supermarket industry. Cathy’s retail industry experience spans a host of senior-level positions at Hannaford Brothers and Food Lion, including president of the Food Lion banner responsible for overall operations of its 1,200 retail stores.
Cathy holds a bachelor’s degree in management and marketing from the University of Maine and completed coursework in strategic retail management at the College of William and Mary. She served as chair of the Produce Traceability Initiative’s Leadership Council and the Coca-Cola Research Council. Cathy currently serves on the Board of Governors of Children's Miracle Hospital Network and is a past board member of the Network of Executive Women as well as a past board member of the Board of Duke Children’s Hospital.
Chief Operating Officer
Tony Parassio joined PMA in 2008 as Vice President of Business Development and in 2010 was appointed Senior Vice President, Member Value. In May 2013, Tony was appointed Chief Operating Officer and provides leadership to the creation of value for the association’s members around the world.
Prior to joining PMA, Tony held a variety of commercial leadership roles with Fortune 500 companies, including global business development and executive positions. He earned a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Bucknell University and has taken graduate studies in marketing and leading organizational change.
Chief Financial Officer
Dr. Yvonne Bull joined PMA in 2002 as Director of Finance. She was promoted to CFO in 2009. Yvonne is responsible for the financial and fiscal management of the association, which includes the general accounting, budgeting, financial reporting, tax and auditing functions. In addition, she oversees PMA’s human resources, information technology and facilities. Yvonne brought to PMA 20 years of experience in financial management, having previously served as Finance Director for the Delaware Theatre Company and an Accounting Manager with Brandywine Financial, a real estate investment company.
Yvonne holds an associate degree in accounting from Delaware Technical Community College, a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Goldey-Beacom College, and a master’s and doctorate in business administration both from Wilmington University.
Chief Science & Technology Officer
Dr. Bob Whitaker joined PMA in 2008 as Chief Science & Technology Officer, responsible for food safety, technology, supply chain management and sustainability. Bob has served on the Center for Produce Safety (CPS) Board of Directors and Executive Committee since its founding in 2007 and was the first chair of the CPS technical committee (2008-2013).
Prior to PMA, Bob spent 16 years in the biotechnology field with DNA Plant Technology Corporation (DNAP) as a researcher and finally as Vice President for Fruit and Vegetable Research and Development. After DNAP, Bob worked 10 years at NewStar Fresh Foods and its subsidiary, MissionStar Processing, in food safety, product development and as Vice President of Process Operations.
Actively involved in produce association activities, Bob has served as a volunteer leader for several national and regional industry trade groups including lending his expertise to the development of the leafy greens GAP (good agricultural practices) metrics and serving on the California Leafy Greens Technical Committee during its formative years. Bob has been honored by several groups for technical achievement and leadership including: International Fresh-cut Processors’ Association (IFPA) Technical Achievement Award (2006), U.S. Department of Agriculture National Advisory Committee on Microbial Criteria for Foods committee member (2013), NSF Food Safety Leadership (2015), CPS Leadership (2015) and National Academies of Science Genetically Engineered Crops Review panel (2016).
Bob holds a doctorate in biology from the State University of New York at Binghamton.
Chief Marketing Officer
Lauren M. Scott joined PMA as CMO in October 2016. Lauren has more than 20 years of experience in the consumer products industry. Prior to PMA, Lauren worked at PepsiCo and Diageo in a variety of marketing roles with increasing responsibility including brand management, foodservice, activation, field marketing, national promotions, cultural branding, global innovation and strategy. She began her career as a four-year Inroads intern and full-time hire in sales at Colgate-Palmolive.
Lauren holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Rutgers University, a master of business administration from University of Maryland and a master’s in strategic communication from Columbia University, where she continues as a graduate project adviser. Lauren also actively coaches and mentors. A self-described foodie, Lauren's civic passions include combating hunger, food insecurities and cleft lip and palate conditions.
Senior Vice President & Executive Director of Center for Growing Talent by PMA
Margi Prueitt joined the Center for Growing Talent (CGT) by PMA as Executive Director in 2010. Since then, Margi has clarified the charitable foundation’s brand and its mission to attract, develop and retain talent for the produce and floral industries. She works with her team to further develop programming, including exposing more students to career opportunities in produce and floral businesses through an increased number of Career Pathways programs and the addition of Immersion Academy. Margi also oversees the growth of leadership development programs for industry members at every stage of their career and is working on programs that will help the industry retain talent they need to thrive.
Previously, Margi spent 35 years with the American Red Cross, including serving as CEO of the American Red Cross of the Delmarva Peninsula. She also served as the Executive Director of an economic development organization.
She holds a bachelor’s in education from the University of Kentucky, a master’s in community development from University of Louisville and attended an Executive Leadership Program at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government.
PMA’s “Glimpse into the Future” report identifies issues and trends that are likely to affect the global fresh produce and floral industries in the next three to five years. It was developed from information gathered by the PMA Research team, in conjunction with members and volunteer leaders worldwide, as well as global subject matter experts.More >