NEW YORK — Bill Lynch has been named interim president of the Specialty Food Association (SFA). A 20-year veteran of the organization, he assumes leadership from Phil Kafarakis, who will assist with the transition over the coming month as his contract expires.
Mr. Lynch, previously vice president of engagement and experience, joined the SFA in 1999 as operations manager for the Fancy Food Shows.
Mr. Kafarakis was named president of the SFA in July 2016. Prior to joining the group, he was chief innovation and member advancement officer for the National Restaurant Association. Previously, he spent 10 years with McCormick & Co. and held executive leadership positions at Cargill, Kraft and Jones Dairy Farm.
“The Specialty Food Association has undergone a significant transformation over the past few years, and we sincerely thank Phil for his leadership and guidance in pioneering programs that will have a lasting impact on the SFA and its over 4,000 members,” said Becky Renfro Borbolla, co-chair of the board. “We intend to build on these initiatives to continue the advancement of the association for years to come.”
Founded in 1952, the Specialty Food Association is the leading trade organization representing the $148.7 billion specialty food industry and the host of the Winter and Summer Fancy Food Shows. The association announced in April the cancellation of the Summer Fancy Food Show, scheduled for June 28-30 in New York, after its venue, the Javits Center, was converted into a field hospital.
The SFA said it has refunded most of the exhibitors and is implementing cost savings measures, including placing 30% of employees on a 90-day work furlough, pausing recruiting efforts for 10 new positions, eliminating temporary workers and contractors, and reducing budgeted operating expenses and revenue-based bonus expenses.