Pierson Clair receives 2011 Kettle Award
August 15, 2011
President & CEO
Brown & Haley Co.
Only 16 at the time, Pierson Clair made his first batch of chocolate for the Blommer Chocolate Co. in Los Angeles in 1964. It was the beginning of a long love affair with chocolate and candymaking.
A graduate of Stanford University in 1970, he joined Blommer that same year and eventually became vice president for the company.
In 1998, Clair took on the role of president and chief operating officer at Brown & Haley, taking on chief executive duties in 2004.
Since his arrival to Brown & Haley, Clair has focused on leveraging the company's famed Almond Roca brand through a variety of innovative product launches, which has spurred sales and profit growth.
In addition, Clair has overseen a multi-million investment effort at the company's 110,000-sq.-ft. plant in Tacoma to improve efficiencies and implement modernization efforts, all of which have lead to nearly a 30% increase in output.
A long-time member of the National Confectioners Association, Clair was the co-author of the Yes on 1107 Initiative on the 2010 voter pamphlet in Washington. He was instrumental in leading the fight this year to repeal Washington State's food and beverage tax, which proved to be arbitrary and confusing to consumers and candy makers alike.
Clair serves on the NCA's Chocolate Council and is a member of the World Cocoa Foundation. He's also been involved with the American Association of Candy Technologists as a former section chairman and been an active supporter of the Western Candy Conference, having served as chairman of the association's program and golf committees for 15 years.
A member of the Tacoma Public Liabary Foundation Board, Clair also serves as a board member of the Urban Waters Science Research Center in Tacoma.