Feb 1, 2024
PSA elects new executive committee members

The Potato Sustainability Alliance’s board of directors elected new executive committee members during its winter board meeting last month at the 2024 Potato Expo in Austin, Texas.

Tracy Shinners-Carnelley, vice president of Research, Quality & Sustainability at wholesale market Peak of the Market, is the new chair. Mike Wenkel, chief operating officer of the National Potato Council, is the vice chair.

Newly-elected PSA executive committee (left to right) with CEO John Mesko (second from right) are: Shane Sampels, Mike Wenkel, Tracy Shinners-Carnelley and Ritchey Toevs. Photo courtesy of PSA.

Other new executive committee members are Shane Sampels of Sysco and Ritchey Toevs, an Idaho potato grower.

The executive committee provides guidance to PSA staff and oversight of the organization’s strategy, budget and annual work plan. Outgoing committee members Jolyn Rasmussen of J.R. Simplot and Tommy Jackson of Syngenta will continue to serve on the PSA board.

“PSA’s board of directors in an active, engaged group representing the entire potato value chain,” PSA CEO John Mesko said in a news release. “Our executive committee drives our higher-level strategy and helps us navigate the potato industry.”

The new committee members:

  • Tracy Shinners-Carnelley, board chair: vice president of Research, Quality & Sustainability at Peak of the Market Ltd., headquartered in Winnipeg, Canada. She leads research on variety evaluation, improved pest management and agronomic potatoes for fresh market potatoes and works with growers in fields and packing houses.
  • Mike Wenkel, board vice chair: NPC COO. Wenkel joined NPC in June 2019 as COO and oversees the day-to-day operations of the organization as it works to represent interests of the U.S. potato industry in Washington, D.C. He is responsible for the creation and operation of the Potato Leadership, Education and Advancement Foundation (Potato LEAF).
  • Shane Sampels, executive committee member: senior director of Quality Assurance at Sysco and subsidiary Fresh Point, a fresh distributor specializing in produce. He has 30 years of food industry leadership and technical experience.
  • Ritchey Toevs, second-generation potato grower from Aberdeen, Idaho: Toevs raises 950 acres of frozen processing potatoes at Toevs Farms, which also grows wheat and barley.

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