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    GMA Exec Conf. Focuses on Growth Through Collaboration

    Bolsters mission with the new consumer product safety veep

    “Because the world is getting smaller and moving faster than ever, this year’s conference is designed to provide the content and networking that will help our members achieve their personal and professional goals during a time of great change,” declared GMA president and CEO Pamela G. Bailey, during her opening remarks over the weekend during the ongoing Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) Executive Conference at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Colo.

    “Whether developing responsible public policy solutions, helping to reduce costs or fostering growth," Bailey continued, "the Executive Conference has always been a laboratory for manufacturers, retailers and suppliers to tackle together the most challenging issues facing us.”

    A diverse range of speakers from companies including Sam's Club, American Express, Meijer, Publix Super Markets, Wakefern Food Corp., Starbucks Coffee, and numerous GMA manufacturer member companies are among the featured speakers of the annual conference.

    GMA’s 2012 conference program offers an in-depth look at the most pressing issues impacting the consumer packaged goods industry, including legislative and regulatory developments in product safety and health, leadership and organizational excellence strategies, consumer insights and market trends, global commerce and environmental sustainability.

    In related news, Emilia C. Lonardo, Ph.D., has been named as GMA’s new VP of consumer product safety and science policy.

    "GMA has a world-class consumer product safety practice, and I am confident that Emilia's scientific expertise and experience will help to make it even more robust and effective," said Dr. Leon Bruner, the association’s chief science officer. Lonardo’s appointment, added Bruner, is an important part of “GMA's continued commitment to strengthen its scientific and technical capabilities in critically important areas of consumer product safety."

    Bringing over 30 years of professional experience, most recently in regulatory intelligence and policy at Johnson & Johnson, Lonardo also formerly served as global head of regulatory strategy at Novartis Consumer Health, leading emerging issue management and product stewardship. Before that at the Exxon Corp., she held the position of senior toxicologist, assessing and ensuring product safety, and authoring numerous food additive petitions.

    “The association plays an important leadership role when it comes to consumer product safety, and I look forward to working with the GMA staff and the experts at its member companies to build on that record of success,” said Lonardo, who received her bachelor of science degree in biology from State University New York, a master of science in immunology & toxicology from Colorado State College, a medical technology certification from Buffalo General Hospital, a Ph.D. from LaSalle University and a law degree from NWC University School of Law.

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