IDFA Names new Executive Council, Outlines Enhanced Governance Structure

(Washington, D.C. – The International Dairy Foods Association has consolidated the governance structure of its constituent organizations – the Milk Industry Foundation, the National Cheese Institute and the International Ice Cream Association – under one central organization, IDFA. As of Jan. 1, IDFA is operating under one set of bylaws and financial reporting requirements, as well as one budget, and the constituent organizations no longer exist.

“As the preeminent advocacy and membership-driven organization supporting the dairy foods business, the International Dairy Foods Association has worked for the last 30-plus years to advance and protect our industry, while acting as a trusted advocate for our members’ regulatory, legislative and communications needs,” explained Michael Dykes, D.V.M., president and CEO of IDFA. “Like our industry, however, the needs of dairy processing companies and suppliers are changing and growing. As our industry and the needs of our members evolve, so must IDFA.

“Under this new structure, IDFA will be more nimble, inclusive and effective in representing the interests of all segments of the dairy processing industry,” Dykes added. “This foundation will allow us to enhance our legislative, regulatory and communication efforts and increase the return on investment for our members.” 

New Governance Structure Implemented

The new IDFA Executive Council is now seated and will focus on the business and operations of the association to carry out its fiduciary responsibilities. Later this spring, five Industry Segment Boards will be created to drive policy and strategy. These boards will represent fluid milk, ice cream, cheese, yogurt and cultured products, and dairy-derived ingredients, with the option to add boards as the industry continues to evolve and new product categories emerge.

Dan Zagzebski, president and CEO of Great Lakes Cheese Co., Inc., has been named chairman of the Executive Council.

“Pursuing priorities as one advocacy organization will enhance the effectiveness of IDFA’s voice in Washington, and creating a structure with room for growth will allow IDFA to support the changing needs of its members and the dairy foods industry overall,” Zagzebski said. “I’m honored to serve as the inaugural chairman of the Executive Council and look forward to working with IDFA and my council colleagues as we navigate the next phase of evolution and growth.”

In December, an interim Nomination and Governance Committee led the process for selecting the IDFA Executive Council members, including the chairs and vice chairs of the Industry Segment Boards. These leaders are now in place and ready to lead IDFA into its next stage of restructuring. The first meeting of the Executive Council will be held at Dairy Forum, Jan. 20-23 in Orlando.

IDFA Executive Council Members

Officers (terms ending January 2021)

Chair: Dan Zagzebski, President & CEO, Great Lakes Cheese Co., Inc.

Vice Chair: David Ahlem, CEO and President, Hilmar Cheese Company, Inc.

Secretary: Stan Ryan, President & CEO, Darigold, Inc.

Treasurer: David Nelsen, Vice President, Manufacturing, Albertsons Companies

Immediate Past Chair of IDFA: Mike Reidy, Senior Vice President, Corporate Affairs, Leprino Foods Company

Industry Segment Boards Chairs and Vice Chairs (terms ending January 2022)

IDFA Fluid Milk Board

Chair: Jeffrey Kaneb, Executive Vice President, HP Hood LLC

Vice Chair: Ed Mullins, Executive Vice President & CEO, Prairie Farms Dairy, Inc.

IDFA Ice Cream Board

Chair: Mike Wells, President and Chief Executive Officer, Wells Enterprises, Inc.

Vice Chair: Rich D. Draper, Chief Executive Officer, The Ice Cream Club, Inc.

IDFA Cheese Board

Chair: Louie P. Gentine, Chief Executive Officer, Sargento Foods Inc.

Vice Chair: Doug Simon, President, Agropur U.S. Operations

IDFA Yogurt and Cultured Products Board

Chair: Philippe L. Caradec, Vice President, Public Affairs & Sustainable Development NORAM, Danone North America

Vice Chair: Tim Walls,Executive Vice President, Schreiber US, Schreiber Foods, Inc.

IDFA Ingredients Board

Chair: Andrei Mikhalevsky, President and CEO, California Dairies, Inc.

Vice Chair: Terry Brockman, President & COO, U.S. Division, Saputo Cheese USA Inc.

Directors (terms ending January 2020)

Jay Bryant, Chief Executive Officer, Maryland and Virginia Milk Producers Cooperative Association, Inc.

Russell Coleman, Executive Vice President, General Counsel, Dean Foods Company

Peter Cotter, General Manager, Cheese & Dairy, The Kraft Heinz Company

Michael Doyle, President & CEO, Foremost Farms USA

Tim Galloway, CEO, Galloway Company

Douglas Glade, Executive Vice President, Commercial Operations, Dairy Farmers of America, Inc.

Ken Jorgensen, Director, Dairy Operations, H-E-B

Jerry D. Kaminski, Chief Operating Officer, Land O’Lakes, Inc.

Scott McGinty, Chief Executive Officer, Aurora Organic Dairy

Tom Murphy, President, Brewster Cheese Company

Brian Phelan, CEO, Glanbia Nutritionals, Glanbia plc

Shelley Roth, President, Pierre’s Ice Cream Company

Erin Sharp, Group Vice President, Manufacturing, The Kroger Co.

Patricia D. Stroup, Global Vice President and Head of Commodities, Nestlé S.A.

Alan Thomsen, President & CEO, Schoep’s Ice Cream Co., Inc.

Lawrence Webster, CEO, Upstate Niagara Cooperative, Inc.

Gold Business Partner Representatives (terms ending January 2020)

Dale Andersen, President & CEO, Delkor Systems, Inc.

Acyr Borges, President, Serac, Inc.

Mary Ledman, Global Dairy Strategist, Rabobank – New York

Mike Neu,Senior Vice President, Food Cultures & Enzymes, Chr. Hansen, Inc.

Chris Olsen, Vice President, Community and Government Affairs, Tate & Lyle Ingredients Americas LLC

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The International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), Washington, D.C., represents the nation’s dairy manufacturing and marketing industry, which supports nearly 3 million jobs that generate more than $161 billion in wages and has an overall economic impact of more than $628 billion. IDFA members range from multinational organizations to single-plant companies. Together they represent approximately 90 percent of the milk, cultured products, cheese, ice cream and frozen desserts produced and marketed in the United States and sold throughout the world. The diverse membership includes numerous food retailers, suppliers, cooperatives and companies that offer a wide variety of nutritional dairy products and dairy-derived ingredients. Visit IDFA at