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Erickson takes helm at Texas association

The Texas International Produce Association announced that Bret Erickson has been named president and chief executive officer of the association, effective Jan. 7.

John McClung, who formerly held the top spot at TIPA, will continue to work with the organization and focus on leading the Border Issues Management Program initiative.

Ed Bertaud of IFCO, who is chairman of the association, said in a press release, "We are very excited Bret-EricksonBret Ericksonto have Bret taking the reins at TIPA. He has been an excellent addition to the organization and has demonstrated a high level of enthusiasm and intelligence since joining the association. We look forward to having him help position our industry for continued growth and success in the future."

TIPA announced in August that Mr. Erickson had been selected as senior vice president and would ultimately take over Mr. McClung's role.

"I am both humbled and incredibly excited to have this opportunity," Mr. Erickson said in the press release. Ed-BertaudEd Bertaud"The Texas International Produce Association is a critically important advocate for the Texas produce industry and has been for many years. I'm looking forward to continuing that work.

"With the expected completion of Mexico's Mazatlan-Durango highway sometime in 2013, I think we're just beginning to scratch the surface of our industry's growth potential here in Texas," he continued in the press release. John-McClungJohn McClung"There are clearly some challenges when you look at the availability of federal resources, particularly at a time of such fiscal uncertainty, so we've got our work cut out for us. But the business opportunities here are unprecedented and tremendously exciting."

"I am delighted with the selection of Bret Erickson to oversee the activities of this vital organization as we move into the future," Mr. McClung added in the press release. "And I'm eager to focus my attention on the transition into a global produce economy, as the entire industry is doing, whether we realize it or not. Bret has the sound judgment and contagious enthusiasm to lead TIPA for many years to come, and the experience, integrity, and skills to serve the members' complex needs. I suppose I'll have to give up my prime parking space right beside the office back door, but aside from that, the transition is all good."

With regard to Mr. McClung's future with the TIPA, Mr. Bertaud stated, "We can't thank John enough for his leadership as president of the association. He is a well-respected figure among his colleagues and we are eager to have John continue working with TIPA and carry on the great success of our Border Issues Management Program."