Moran is director of apprenticeship programs at the New Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program. In 2019, the nonprofit organization began hosting classes consisting of four sets of courses that meet requirements of the Manufacturing Skill Standards Council in safety awareness, quality practices in management, manufacturing processes and production, and maintenance awareness. The Manufacturing Skill Standards Council is a nonprofit, industry-led, training, assessment and certification system focused on the core skills and knowledge needed by the nation’s front-line production and material handling workers. “This is classroom training that compliments on-the-job training,” Moran told NJBIZ. “This is part of the whole apprenticeship learning model. Part of this training is we incorporate credentials into what they are learning.”
Brian C. Neuwirth
Neuwirth is president of UNEX Manufacturing, Inc., a leading provider of material handling and carton flow solutions for distribution centers and warehouses. UNEX clients include retailers, big box stores, wine & spirits and food & beverage distributors, and companies in the automotive, heavy equipment and industrial distribution industries. He is an expert in the order fulfillment and order picking process, line side storage solutions, the application of lean manufacturing principles, carton flow, SKU analysis and ergonomics in order picking and assembly. Previously, Neuwirth was VP of Sales and Marketing at UNEX and held several other positions at UNEX including Director of Marketing & Business Development, Northeast Regional Manager, National Sales Manager and Inside Sales Representative.
Ramesh is the founder of Suuchi Inc., a next-generation supply chain platform provider for fashion brands and retailers. The Carlstadt-based company shifted some of its operations to manufacture masks and other protective gear for health care professionals in an effort to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. Ramesh said the company is “re-purposing as much of our available capacity as possible for mass production of materials that are desperately needed.” Personal protective equipment materials such as N-95 masks, surgical masks, gowns, and gloves are all in production at Suuchi. Ramesh said she is adding more to this list as she and her team are able to configure more of their network to the production of these supplies. Ramesh told NJBIZ that she believes her company has a responsibility to assist health care workers during the crisis. “As the world continues to navigate these dark times, we want to be the light that helps medical professionals be able to keep our communities safe and healthy without having to sacrifice their own well-being and safety.”
Rosenberg cooked up Promotion in Motion from his college dorm room 40 years ago. Now, its most popular product, Welch’s Fruit Snacks, gets eaten at 100 packages per second around the world. Most of PIM’s production is done at its plant in Somerset, and combined with its factory in Spain, capacity is about 250 million pounds of product per year. Back in March, PIM donated 1.2 million packs of fruit snacks and made a cash contribution to Feeding America, a non-profit tasked with providing food to the millions of Americans faced with hunger — many of them for the first time — due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Savage is the executive director of the New Jersey Council of County Vocational-Technical Schools. Since 2001, she has advocated for career and technical education on behalf of the 21 county vocational-technical school districts and is a voice for workforce development, pursuing the development of new manufacturing-related training programs in the state’s county vocational-technical schools. A champion of career and technical education (CTE), Savage devotes a lot of attention to having the Department of education better understand how state assessment impacts schools and students. A supporter of the notion that student course completion requirements should provide greater flexibility, Savage belives that the current “one-size-fits-all” set of course and credit requirements does not recognize the needs of students with clear and specific career goals. Savage has recommended to the Department and State Board of Education to consider allowing CTE coursework to count toward high school graduation and give students who want to concentrate on career preparation more flexibility in meeting non-core requirements.
Enacting preventive measures for food safety isn’t merely a suggestion from the Food and Drug Administration. It’s mandatory. Most every food and beverage company in the country needs someone on site trained in aspects of food safety per the Obama-era Food Safety Modernization Act, which Schaffner and her team at the Rutgers Food Innovation Center train hundreds of companies on every year. If you’re a food manufacturer, you’re familiar with FSMA—and whether you know it or not, that makes you familiar with Schaffner. “You can’t inspect safety into something,” Schaffner told NJBIZ. “[With FSMA], the onus is on the food processor to make the food safely. If they’re not, [the FDA] can shut them down. They can take away their registration to stop them from producing food, they can make them recall food if they feel like it was made unsafely, they can fine them and, in some cases, people can go to jail.”
Sebastion created the original model now known as the New Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program and was the founding president & chief innovation officer of the New Jersey Innovation Institute and senior vice president of Technology & Business Development at New Jersey Institute of Technology. During his 15 years at NJIT he was able to expand the research and development enterprise to over $110 million. That figure was good enough to place NJIT fifth among all polytechnic universities in the country and fourth among all universities in patent productivity.
Singh, the CEO of Holtec International, which produces equipment for power generation companies, is also a trustee at Cooper Health. Holtec built the $300 million Krishna P. Singh Technology Campus on 50 riverfront acres in Camden, which the company and local officials contend helped to usher in an economic renaissance to one of the nation’s poorest cities. According to Holtec, the site “consists of two large manufacturing plants, a seven story corporate engineering center, a system test facility (without nuclear fuel), and support installations like a training center, non-destructive testing laboratory, and corporate apartments.” Holtec says the manufacturing facility “is configured to incorporate the latest in fabrication machinery and information management software to enable precision manufacturing of large and complex weldments which will be required to assemble its small modular reactor” currently under development.
As the CEO of Whippany-based Suburban Propane, Stivala runs a company with a large footprint supplying gas to a variety of residential and business customers — in industries ranging from agriculture to hospitality to construction — around the country. And under his leadership, Suburban Propane has made green energy a centerpiece of its corporate strategy. The most recent manifestation was the company’s acquisition earlier this of a 39 percent stake in Oberan Fuels, an alternative fuel producer based in San Diego. Stivala met Oberon CEO Rebecca Boudreax, met at an industry conference in Washington, D.C. and realized that there was a fit. “About a year and a half ago we launched what we call Go Green with Suburban Propane, which had two tenets to it,” he told NJBIZ. “One is advocacy work to get the word out about propane, as it is today because it can be a somewhat forgotten source of energy. … The second tenet is that if you say that, you have to be willing to innovate, have to be willing to invest in the next wave of innovative solutions to further reduce the carbon intensity of the product we love so much here at Suburban Propane. … And so, yes, we’re trying to be the pioneer in our industry.”
Dr. Taglietti is the president and chief executive officer of Jersey City-based Scynexis Inc. He took over the top job in April 2015 and has been a member of the board since November 2014 and became president in September 2015. Over the course of his career, he has brought to market 35 different products in the U.S. and internationally. He served in leadership roles at Forest Laboratories Inc. until its acquisition by Actavis in 2014. Before that, Taglietti served as an executive at Stiefel Laboratories, Inc., a GSK company, for three years.
In 2011 Tardugno, who is president and CEO of Celsion Corp., relocated the biopharmaceutical company to Lawrenceville from Maryland. He was looking to develop and commercialize life-saving chemotherapy and immunotherapy agents where he could recruit the best talent. Tardugno has been instrumental in developing the company’s pipeline, which represents a comprehensive, integrated portfolio of targeted therapeutic agents in the areas of chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and RNA-based therapy, largely focused on first-line treatment in combination with the standard of care. With 40 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and medical device industries, Tardugno’s career has been devoted to healthcare. Before joining Celsion, he held senior executive positions with Mylan Laboratories, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Bausch & Lomb and Abbott Laboratories.
Imperial Dade has been on an acquisition spree finalizing its 29th acquisition on Dec. 1 under the leadership of CEO Tillis. Jersey City-based Imperial Dade has been at the forefront of the national response to the COVID-19 virus. A leading distributor of janitorial and cleaning supplies and equipment in the United States, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean, the firm’s customers include hospitals, school districts and nursing homes. The company worked tirelessly to supply gloves and masks and hospital supplies in addition to its cleaning and janitorial supplies. Imperial Dade is a finalist for the NJBIZ 2020 50 Fastest Growing Companies in New Jersey Awards to be celebrated virtually on Dec. 16, 2020.
Vincent took the reins at Mars Wrigley in May 2019 and brought with him two decades of food manufacturing experience, mostly in leadership roles at General Mills and more recently overseeing 13 plant locations nationwide for convenience foods manufacturer Greencore. The pandemic has caused people to reach for the candy dish, according to Vincent, who told media outlet Cheddar this summer that Mars Wrigley has seen “tremendous growth” in the sale of its products online. A Mars Wrigley representative told NJBIZ that the company has “definitely had to lean into digital commerce and pack optimization, as consumers seek out larger pack sizes to stock up on their favorite treats while at home,” all while moving forward with the release of multiple new products this year, including sugar cookie M&Ms in November and M&Ms chocolate popcorn in July.
Milk’s favorite cookie comes from Fair Lawn, at least for now. Mondelez International’s Fair Lawn facility has been one of the world’s biggest producers of Oreos for 60 years, and the company took everyone from Mayor Kurt Peluso to Gov. Murphy by surprise when Walter, EVP and president, North America, announced the plant will be closing, citing aging infrastructure and outdated production capabilities. Shuttering the plant would displace 600 workers of the company’s statewide footprint of 2,100, which otherwise includes folks at the East Hanover headquarters, those in R&D, and field sales reps. If the proposed closure moves forward, it would not likely occur before mid-2021.
Welsh is the president and general counsel of DSM North America, a life sciences and material sciences company that trades on the Amsterdam stock exchange. DSM has 21,000 employees worldwide and $12 billion in annual sales, is arguably one of the largest vitamin manufacturers in the world. With the COVID-19 outbreak, a slew of trade show cancellations over the spring meant that DSM was left with thousands of pieces of an immunity-boosting nutritional supplement with a limited shelf life. In the spring, DSM donated thousands of the product, known as WellStix, to local police departments across the state. Welsh noted that the company produced it at a plant in Belvidere. “I have more and I’m looking for folks that might need to improve their immunity,” particularly first responders, he said back in April.
Wenner unexpectedly stepped into the role of interim CEO at B&G Foods this year with the departure of former CEO Kenneth Romanzi, which the company said was “mutually agreed upon” for Romanzi “to pursue personal interests.” Wenner’s no newbie, though. He’s a longtime B&G Foods board member and sat at the helm of the consumer packaged goods company from 1993 to 2014. Under Wenner’s leadership, B&G completed and integrated 16 acquisitions, evolving from a small, regional pickle company to a public food company with a diverse portfolio of brands. He now picks up where Romanzi left off, just after the successful acquisition and integration of legacy pantry stable Clabber Girl and on the acquisition path with its pending purchase of Crisco. He’s expected to remain interim CEO until a search committee finds fresh blood.
As executive director of the New Jersey Business Action Center, Willoughby oversees a state office tasked with helping businesses navigate through the bureaucratic red tape of governmental regulation and permits. That’s especially relevant during a pandemic, where the rules for doing business can change every few months. The NJBAC runs a web page on “New Jersey COVID-19 Business Information” to give business owners an easy means to understand their responsibilities. In conjunction with New Jersey’s Small Business Development Center, the NJBAC is offering free online tools to help small businesses expand their e-commerce footprint ahead of the holiday season, as the pandemic keeps many people home-bound and gravitating towards online retail such as Amazon and Etsy. That includes website setup, social media promotion, training on search engine optimization, how to write product descriptions, and pricing strategies to boost sales. “The NJBAC is committed to helping New Jersey small businesses, especially during this holiday season,” Willoughby, who took charge of the center in March 2018, said in December. “These resources are crafted by business experts, incorporating many of the frequently asked questions on launching an e-commerce platform to help sell products online.”