The Eastern Produce Council will honor Gordon M. Hochberg, vice president of The Produce News, with its 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award during its 46th annual dinner dance Saturday, April 5, at the Westmount Country Club in Woodland Park, NJ.
The EPC Lifetime Achievement Award is “an esteemed honor that is deserving of the people that have really reached the pinnacle in the produce industry, especially in this area,” said Paul Kneeland,EPC president and vice president of produce and floral for Kings Food Markets, based in Parsippany, NJ.
Hochberg was a clear choice for the second-annual Lifetime Achievement Award, according to Kneeland, who said he received a unanimous vote from the EPC board of directors.
“I can’t think of a better choice than to honor someone who has supported the industry as much as he has,” Kneeland commented. “He really is a great guy and has done a lot for us, with a smile all the time.”
Kneeland added that Hochberg has always been very supportive of the organization and council, its strategic direction and the produce industry overall.
“He’s a mainstay in a lot of our events,” said Kneeland. “He’s a soft-spoken guy, very well liked by everyone I know. Just a genuine gentleman and a great proponent of the industry.”
EPC Executive Director John McAleavey agreed that Hochberg was an excellent choice to receive this award.
“Here’s a man who’s been in our industry for years and sometimes doesn’t get the recognition he rightfully deserves, and we thought that we should do that,” McAleavey told The Produce News. “He’s a friend of ours, the community and the industry, and he should be recognized by his peers. We feel very good about that.”
McAleavey added that Hochberg was truly shocked when he received word that he had been chosen as the 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award winner. “He called me back that evening and told me he couldn’t have had a better day than that,” McAleavey said.
Hochberg said that he has enjoyed covering the Eastern Produce Council for more than 30 years, and it has always been a rewarding experience.
“Down through the years, I have met wonderful people at the EPC meetings — people who became both colleagues and friends. The council has done so much good work for the produce industry, and I have always enjoyed helping to report that good work far and wide.”
“I would like to thank everyone at The Produce News for their everlasting support over these many years, and I am truly grateful to everyone at the Eastern Produce Council for this amazing honor,” he concluded.