Wayne Zink, ceo of Indianapolis-based Endangered Species Chocolate (ESC), has announced that he will transition from company operations to become president of the Endangered Species Chocolate Foundation (www.escfoundation.org), the non-profit arm of the company. Zink also will serve as chairperson of ESC’s board of directors. Curt Vander Meer will take over as ceo of ESC.

Zink’s focused involvement will serve to further Endangered Species Chocolate Foundation’s on-the-ground commitment to cacao farmers in Ecuador and the Ivory Coast. The foundation’s projects allow the company to work directly with individuals in cacao farming communities, creating sustainable solutions for the planet and promoting ethical trade practices that empower communities.

Zink speaks highly of his ceo successor.

“Curt and I have worked closely together for five years now, and he has been a huge part of making ESC a success,” Zink says. “I’m proud that our brand is the No. 1-selling chocolate in the natural organic category.”

Vander Meer joined Endangered Species Chocolate in 2005 and has served the company in various positions, most recently as coo.

“I am excited to move into this leadership position,” Vander Meer says. “Wayne will continue to do what he loves by being able to use his philanthropic skills to expand the reach of Endangered Species Chocolate Foundation.”

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