Phillip M. Kafarakis has been hired as president of the Specialty Food Association (SFA, the New York City-headquartered trade organization announced on July 21. He brings more than 30 years of food industry experience to the job, with solid background in brand management, membership development and strategic planning.
For the past three years Kafarakis has been employed as chief innovation and member advancement officer for the Washington, DC-based National Restaurant Association. Prior to that he spent a decade with McCormick & Company in Hunt Valley, Maryland. Kafarakis has also held executive leadership positions at Cargill, Jones Dairy Farm and Kraft. He holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing management from Northern Arizona University and an MBA from Georgetown University.
“We are very pleased to have Phil join our organization,” said Becky Renfro Borbolla, chairwoman of the Specialty Food Association’s board of directors. “His experience and industry insight will provide us with an excellent blend of strength in strategy, member development and engagement, sales and marketing, and innovative partnership development. Each of those qualities will be essential as we seek to serve our members and the industry in new and compelling ways.”
Kafarakis is responsible for the strategic direction and daily operations of the SFA, which represents more than 3,200 member companies in the food and beverage industry. He succeeds Ann Daw, who headed up the organization from May of 2006 through December of 2015. She currently serves as a board member of the AARP Foundation, is a board director at World Education Services, and a consulting partner with Gastronome Ventures.