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Maria Lena (Mylene) Pacheco joined the Newark, DE-based Produce Marketing Association's staff April 1 in the newly created position of vice president of member value creation. She leads the creation of value for PMA's membership worldwide, including understanding member needs and developing value offerings to meet or exceed those needs.

In her new role, Ms. Pacheco is leading staff teams that are responsible for research and development, events, and education.

She came to PMA from the financial services industry, where she gained more than 15 years of experience in product management, new product and service development, market research, and marketing with a customer-centric focus. Most recently, she was a vice president in the business card group at J.P. Morgan Chase Card Services in Wilmington, DE.

"Mylene brings a wealth of ideas and expertise from a different yet analogous industry," Bryan Silbermann, PMA president and chief executive officer, said in an April 21 press release. "She's an expert at discovering how to meet customer needs, and that's a critical skill as PMA pushes forward to create more value for our members globally, delivering the most effective tools in the most appropriate formats. Her primary mission is to work with our membership to ensure we understand and address their priority needs to help grow their businesses."

Ms. Pacheco reports to Tony Parassio, senior vice president of member value, and she works closely with PMA staff teams including member relations and business development as well as the association's volunteer leader groups. In addition, she works with PMA's Foundation for Industry Talent to create tools to attract, develop and retain the industry's current and future leaders.

"I have a passion for the customer and for finding solutions for complex member needs," Ms. Pacheco said in the press release. "I understand the importance of listening and cultivating relationships across organizations. I look forward to putting my skills to work to help PMA expand the value and service we provide to members around the world."

Born and raised in the Philippines and bilingual in English and Filipino, Ms. Pacheco also supports PMA's growth and member relations worldwide, including working with PMA Australia-New Zealand to ensure two-way value in that relationship.

She considers her employment with PMA as a return to her roots in the food industry. She helped manage the retail and wholesale operations of her family's grain business and was a member of the Philippines' National Food Authority before deciding to attend graduate school in the United States. Ms. Pacheco earned her bachelor's degree in business management from Ateneo de Manila University in Manila, the Philippines, and her masters in business administration degree with an emphasis on marketing and corporate strategy from the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business Administration in Ann Arbor.

She is based in PMA's headquarters in Newark and resides with her husband, a physician, and their two children in Greenville, DE. Active in her community, Ms. Pacheco serves on the executive committee of OperaDelaware and is chairman of its marketing committee. She also mentors local elementary students and is a long-time supporter of a scholarship fund that sponsors the education of deserving indigent students in San Juan City, Philippines.