kettle award 2013 Patrick Huffman
Patrick Huffman accepts Candy Industry's 68th Annual Kettle Award while standing next to his wife Martina, whom he brought on stage to accept the award with him.

Integrating science with successful business and operational skills has delineated Patrick Huffman’s confectionery career.

And, that combination proved to be the perfect formula for garnering Candy Industry’s 68th Kettle Award during a reception held at the exclusive Union League Club of Chicago Tuesday, May 21.

The Club’s main room was filled with more than 250 guests who came to celebrate the five Kettle Award nominees:  Bill and Jeff Birnn of Birnn Chocolates of Vermont; Greg McCormack of Kencraft Candy Co; Joseph Zanetos of Anthony-Thomas Candy Co. and, of course, Huffman.

The room at the ULC turned perfectly quiet when Vice –Chairman Russell Crosio watched as fellow committee member Scott Funk, of the Blommer Co., brought the small black briefcase to Brian Bainbridge, Kettle Committee secretary. Bainbridge, in turn, opened the briefcase, took out the envelope and he walked it over to Crosio. He then patiently opened up the envelope before revealing the news. The room burst into applause as Crosio read the words, “And the recipient of this year’s Kettle Award is Patrick Huffman from The Warrell Corp.”

Huffman has worked and been involved in the confectionery industry, particularly in the chocolate sector, for more than 40 years. Huffman’s experience spans a broad range of companies within the industry, ranging from family-run businesses to multinational corporations.

Under his leadership, sales and profits have consistently increased for those operations, a result of Huffman’s emphasis on organizational excellence, plant efficiency, a streamlined supply chain and unwavering dedication to quality products.

As current president and coo of the Warrell Corp., a company involved in both contract manufacturing and specialty distribution businesses, Huffman has applied those same principals to fuel growth. He has overseen significant growth in contract manufacturing by attracting several Fortune 100 companies. As a result, the company has invested in the installation of several new manufacturing lines.

Actively involved in the American Association of Candy Technologists (AACT), Huffman served as the organization’s president from 1984-1986. He’s currently chairs the Stroud Jordan Award Committee for the AACT.

Huffman also serves on the National Confectioners Association (NCA)’s board of trustees and received the Distinguished Service Award in 2010. He continues to be active in the Pennsylvania Manufacturers Confectioners Association, spearheading the Long Range Planning Committee as chairman and sitting on its board of directors.

When not thoroughly immersed in the confectionery industry, Huffman enjoys working with social service agencies and economic development associations as well as engaging in business-to-business activities. Huffman earned his Master’s of Science in inorganic chemistry from Illinois State University.