Baked Goods & Desserts

New Vice Presidents at Dawn Foods to focus on Improvement, Technology

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Melissa Bautista has joined Dawn Foods as its new vice president of manufacturing for North America, while Emily Gittins has been promoted to vice president, global corporate controller of the Jackson, Michigan, USA-headquartered manufacturer and distributor of frozen baked goods and ingredients.

Bautista (pictured above) will be responsible for building Dawn’s long-term manufacturing capabilities in North America around safety, cost, quality, and service, while also helping the company achieve its current business objectives. She reports to John Schmitz, president of North America operations.

“Melissa brings deep manufacturing experience to this role, having worked both at plant management and leadership levels overseeing multiple facilities,” said Schmitz. “Her approach to leadership and industry knowledge is a strong addition to our plant management teams across our five manufacturing locations in North America.”

Most recently, Bautista was employed as vice president of manufacturing for Utz Brands, overseeing three production facilities and four distribution centers for the snack food specialist. During her time at Utz, she also served as area vice president of operations and as plant manager at the company’s Algona, Washington location. Prior to Utz, Bautista spent 11 years in a variety of supply chain roles at Frito Lay.

Gittins, who has been with Dawn Foods for 15 years, will become the company’s new vice president, global corporate controller, in July. She will replace Jean Rauchholz, who will retire this summer.

Emily Gittins, Vice President, Global Corporate Controller

Gittins takes this next step in her career after serving as senior director of financial reporting, accounting standards and policies, reporting to Rauchholz. Prior to joining Dawn in 2007 as an internal auditor, she worked at the US Department of Defense as an inspector general auditor.

“Emily has consistently taken on new responsibilities throughout her career at Dawn and has been an integral part of the team’s efforts in enhancing control efforts across the organization,” said CFO Karl Brown. “I am confident she will continue to strengthen our global finance team, modernize our processes, and be an incredible leader.”