The Fine Chocolate Industry Association (FCIA) has named former World Cocoa Foundation President Bill Guyton as its new executive director, effective July 1.
He’ll replace previous executive director Karen Bryan, who served for four years. She is stepping down to pursue an MFA in creative writing. Under her tenure at the FCIA, Bryan helped grow the organization to more than 350 members.
"Karen has helped to develop a positive reputation for FCIA and provided professional oversight of our conferences and programs,” FCIA President Clark Guittard said. “She will continue to work with FCIA through the remainder of the year on important consumer research and member benefits like regional meet-ups and webinar series."
Guyton previously served as the FCIA’s senior advisor. In addition to serving 15 years at the WCF’s helm, he has consulted in other commodity sectors such as cotton, rice and cashews, in addition to providing guidance to private sector investors.
"We are pleased to welcome Bill to the leadership role at FCIA," Guittard said. "Bill brings an extensive background in association strengthening and working with companies of all sizes and interests. Through his previous work at the World Cocoa Foundation, he successfully developed and oversaw public-private partnerships that benefited thousands of cocoa farmers."
Guyton will be charged with managing strategic direction and daily operations. He’ll also work in conjunction with the board of directors to expand FCIA’s operations over the next several years. Current company initiatives include expansion of membership services, cocoa sourcing efforts, strategic partnerships and communications.
FCIA is a non-profit organization serving the chocolate industry, promoting quality and ethical sourcing practices