Welch's Appoints Boston-Area Executive to Board of Directors

Robert T. DeMartini, President & CEO of New Balance, Joins Welch's Board of Directors

Jun 01, 2010, 10:00 ET from Welch's

CONCORD, Mass., June 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Welch's, the world's leading marketer of Concord and Niagara grape-based products, today announced the appointment of Robert T. DeMartini, President  and CEO of New Balance, to its board of directors. One of eleven directors, DeMartini will draw on his wealth of experience in consumer goods, brand building and business growth to help further guide Welch's to achieve its short and long-term strategies for development and continued success.

"This is an exciting time for Welch's, and we are thrilled to welcome Rob to our board," said Joseph Falcone, Chairman of the Board, Welch Foods Inc. and President of National Grape Cooperative Inc.  "Since early 2009, our new leadership team has taken on the task of transforming the 140 year-old company to ensure its long-term success.  Rob's consumer products expertise, coupled with his experience leading New Balance, a family-owned company, provides a unique skill set that is perfectly aligned to Welch's and our family farmer ownership. I look forward to working closely with him to further strengthen our competitive edge and continue to grow the business."

A seasoned executive with more than 25 years of experience in the consumer products industry, DeMartini serves as the current President and Chief Executive Officer of New Balance, a leading global athletic products company headquartered in Boston, MA.

"The opportunity to join Welch's, an iconic brand with a tremendous history of success and an even brighter future, is very exciting to me," said DeMartini. "I look forward to working with this entrepreneurial team as we focus on generating future growth, increasing the value we provide our customers, and further maximizing profits for Welch's family-farmer owners."

DeMartini's experience in consumer products includes successful periods of employment at Tyson Foods, Inc., Gillette Company, and Procter & Gamble Company. Prior to joining New Balance, DeMartini served as Senior Vice President, Consumer Division at Tyson Foods where his responsibilities included 35,000 employees and 38 manufacturing facilities in the United States and Canada. DeMartini is a member of the board of directors for KaBOOM! Inc., Chief Executives' Club of Boston, as well as the American Apparel and Footwear Association.

About Welch's

Headquartered in Concord, Massachusetts, Welch's is the processing and marketing subsidiary of the National Grape Cooperative.  Welch's is owned by 1,150 family-farmers across America and in Ontario, Canada, who make up this cooperative, and who are responsible for growing the Concord and Niagara grapes which are pressed to produce Welch's juices and other grape-based products.  At the heart of Welch's is the delicious and inherently healthy Concord grape, and the family-farmer owners who grow it.  As a family-farmer owned company, sustainable agriculture and the importance of healthy eating are central to Welch's mission. Welch's is committed to research and development which will meet the growing demand for products that address consumers' health and nutrition needs.  Welch's products are sold throughout the United States and in approximately 50 countries around the globe.  For more information, visit http://www.welchs.com.

SOURCE Welch's