IFMA Names New CEO

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Phil Kafarakis has been appointed IFMA's next president and CEO. Courtesy of IFMA.

The International Foodservice Manufacturers Association has tapped industry veteran Phil Kafarakis as its new president and CEO.

Beginning Nov. 1, Kafarakis will be responsible for overseeing IFMA’s day-to-day operations and directing the activities of the association. The new hire comes with broad experience leading major food industry companies and associations.

“The IFMA board couldn’t be more pleased with the search committee’s choice,” says Hugh Roth, senior vice president and chief customer and business development officer at PepsiCo Foodservice and the 2021 IFMA board chair, in a press release. “We are confident that Phil will bring the leadership, energy and enthusiasm to continue to provide member value and move IFMA forward.”

Most recently, Kafarakis served as president of the Specialty Food Association (SFA), representing more than 4,000 small and emerging food entrepreneurs in the $160 billion U.S. specialty food industry. Prior to his time with SFA, Kafarakis served as the chief innovation and member advancement officer at the National Restaurant Association.

Kafarakis will succeed Larry Oberkfell, IFMA’s current president and CEO, who has spent 12 years at the helm of IFMA. Oberkfell led the growth of IFMA through multiple recessions and most recently the COVID-19 pandemic, consistently growing revenue and value for its membership, according to a press release.

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