The National Grocers Association (NGA) has made a flurry staff promotions and title updates for 2022, including in government and industry relations, marketing, accounts and the NGA Foundation.
Representing the independent grocery retail and wholesale sector, Washington-based NGA said yesterday that Robert Yeakel has been elevated to senior director of government relations. In the post, he will oversee daily management of the department and help devise and execute a strategy to achieve NGA’s legislative and regulatory goals.
Mary Whitehead has been promoted to senior manager of marketing. In the expanded role, she will become more involved in the creation and execution of integrated marketing campaigns, according to NGA. Whitehead also will be responsible for managing the production of the association’s marketing assets and tools to bolster brand awareness.
Meanwhile, Jonathan Downey now holds the title of senior vice president of membership and industry relations. With the promotion, he will direct the membership department, with a focus on adding members across NGA’s retailer, wholesaler and associate segments.
At the NGA Foundation, Maggie White has been elevated to senior director after two years as director. NGA noted that she has helped rejuvenate and grow the foundation’s programs and services and boost awareness of the organization, especially amid the pandemic. In her new role, White will lead efforts to expand the base of supporters and identify new opportunities to enhance the foundation’s programs and offerings.
Other appointments by NGA include LaKesha Gathers-Flowers as senior manager for the executive office and board liaison and Marvelle Wright as manager of accounting transactions and member support.
“I congratulate our team members for their accomplishments and thank everyone on our staff for their hard work and dedication toward NGA’s members and mission,” Greg Ferrara, NGA president and CEO, said in a statement. “The most important part of any organization is its people, and NGA is fortunate to have a best-in-class team that comes to work every day focused on supporting our members. As we kick off a yearlong celebration of NGA’s 40th anniversary, our association is renewing its commitment to helping ensure that communities across the country are able to benefit by being served by local, community-focused businesses.”