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PMA announces new COO, strengthens senior leadership

The Produce Marketing Association announced that Tony Parassio has been named chief operating officer of the Newark, DE-based organization.

The announcement was made at the association's recent board of directors meeting in Denver.

"I'm pleased to share that Tony Parassio has been promoted to chief operating officer," Bryan Silbermann, president and chief executive officer, said in addressing the board. "During his time with parassioTony ParassioPMA, he's demonstrated unparalleled leadership with our staff team and with members worldwide. Tony's been instrumental in laying our strategic roadmap for creating and delivering value to PMA's members around the globe, including our floral members. He's also played a key role in developing and implementing the association's governance model, engaging more than 400 volunteer leaders from across the fresh produce and floral supply chains. Most recently, he's played a key role leading discussions for the renewal of the strategic plan for PMA and its foundation."

Parassio joined PMA in 2008 as vice president of business development, and in 2010 was appointed senior vice president of member value. He earned a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from Bucknell University in Lewisburg, PA, and has done graduate studies in marketing and leading organizational change.

Prior to joining PMA, he held a variety of commercial leadership roles with global companies, including sales and product management, global business development, and executive-level positions. He currently serves on the Produce for Better Health Foundation's board of directors.

Additionally, Silbermann announced that Margi Prueitt, executive director of the PMA Foundation for Industry Talent, has added the title of senior vice president.

prueittMargi Prueitt"Recognizing the growing importance of the value that the PMA Foundation for Industry Talent brings to our industry in the U.S. and abroad, Margi Prueitt will now also assume the role of PMA senior vice president while keeping her role as executive director of the PMA Foundation," Silbermann announced to the board. "This change is a clear recognition of the integrated role our foundation now plays in bringing unique and differentiated value to PMA members. Since she joined us in 2010, Margi has been the catalyst for an ongoing spring-boarding of greater value and strategic vision for the PMA Foundation. She's been instrumental in leading the execution of some hugely successful programs like the Emerging Leaders Program, Women's Fresh Perspectives Conference, the growing portfolio of Career Pathways Programs and more. Just over the horizon is the latest innovation from the PMA Foundation - the High Performance Management Conference debuting this December."

Prueitt also has expanded the PMA Foundation's role with regional groups across the U.S. and Canada, along with other countries, including South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, Chile, Mexico and more.

Prueitt earned a bachelor's degree in education from the University of Kentucky and a master's degree in community development from the University of Louisville. She also participated in the Harvard J.F. Kennedy School of Government's Executive Leadership Program.