10 Fellows Selected for Blueberry Industry Leadership Program – Produce Blue Book

FOLSOM, Calif. – The US Highbush Blueberry Council (USHBC) BB #: 162393 today announced the first cohort of fellows accepted into its Blueberry Industry Leadership Program.

The program, launched in March, is designed to elevate future blueberry industry leaders by providing in-depth training, industry education and connection to other agricultural leaders for passionate blueberry professionals throughout of the supply chain.

“We are thrilled to welcome this group of leaders as our first class of fellows,” said Amanda Griffin, vice president of engagement and education at USHBC. “These agricultural professionals will guide the blueberry industry into a bright future, and we look forward to being part of their journey by helping them add to their knowledge, experience and level of connection.”

The following are selected as the program’s inaugural fellows:
Christine ButlerDirector of NW and NJ Business Units, MBG Marketing
Gonzalo de ElizaldeBlueberry Product Leadership Sr. Director, Driscoll’s
Ernesto DiazCOO, Berry Brothers
Anna JesseVice President, Forest Hills Farms Inc.
Karan KohliAccount Manager, Mastronardi Produce
Scott MainordRegional Sales Manager SE, WECO
Luke McCreeshNA Blueberry Operations Manager, California Giant Berry Farms
Jennifer PulcifferDirector of Food Safety and Compliance, North Bay Produce Inc.
Darren SinNorthwest Business Manager, Berry Fresh LLC
Micah Weisssales and grower support, Fall Creek Farm & Nursery Inc.

The Blueberry Industry Leadership Program is the first of its kind in the blueberry industry and will help fellows develop their leadership skills, learn from industry leaders for decades, and grow their network of relationships. . Professional development within the industry is a priority as members of the blueberry industry work together to make blueberries the #1 berry in terms of sales volume and premium value. Fellows of the new program will lead the industry into its next period of growth.

Fellows will begin their training this summer and continue through next year, taking an interactive approach to leadership development through hands-on training, immersive learning experiences, engagement with key industry players and exposure to the many components of the product supply chain.

Fellows will participate both virtually and in person, traveling four times during the program through August 2023, with a graduation ceremony taking place during USHBC’s 2023 Fall Meetings.

The second group of scholars to enter the program will be selected in the fall of 2023.


Amanda Griffon
Vice President of Engagement and Education
[email protected]

About the US Highbush Blueberry Council

Established in 2000, the US Highbush Blueberry Council (USHBC) is a federal agricultural research and advocacy program under the independent oversight of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USHBC represents blueberry growers and packers in North and South America who market their blueberries in the United States and abroad, and strives to promote the growth and well-being of all the blueberry industry. USHBC was started by blueberry growers and currently has 2,500 growers, packers and importers. USHBC is committed to providing blueberries that are grown, harvested, packaged and shipped in clean and safe environments. Learn more at ushbc.org.

Kevin E. Boling