Last night, during the American Association of Candy Technologists’ (AACT) National Technical Conference being held at the Marriott Lincolnshire Resort in Lincolnshire, Ill., the organization presented Marlene Baxter Stauffer, director of quality assurance and regulatory compliance at the Blommer Chocolate Co., the 2015 Stroud Jordan award.

Michael Allured, publisher and editor-in-chief of Manufacturing Confectioner magazine, and last year’s Stroud Jordan recipient,  presented Stauffer with the medallion featuring the image of Stroud Jordan, a renowned confectionery scientist and co-founder of the AACT.

Each year since 1951, the AACT presents the award to someone in the industry who’s contributed significantly in the area of education, organization or research.

Upon graduating from Penn State University with a degree in food science in 1982, Stauffer joined the Blommer Chocolate Co., whereby she not only became immersed in her profession, but in the industry as well.

At Blommer, her role encompasses regulatory compliance, regional quality assurance and managing sustainability programs. She also offers support for all aspects of raw materials, manufacturing, quality systems, product development and technical assistance for customers. Certifications include Internal Auditor by SAI Global and Advanced International HACCP Alliance.

Stauffer also has been an instructor at several NCA, PMCA and university classes and spoken at PMCA, Biscuit & Cracker Manufacturers Association (BCMA) and AACT events.  She is a member of the PMCA Membership and Marketing, Long Range Planning and Education and Learning committees.

In addition, Stauffer is also an active member of the Institute of Food Technologists, American Association of Candy Technologists, the NCA Chocolate and Regulatory and Health and Nutrition Committee, Board Member of FARRP (Food Allergy Resource and Research Program) and the PA Food Industry Group. She is a past recipient of the Marie Kelso Award and past president of PMCA.

In accepting the honor, Stauffer was taken aback at the news, telling Pat Huffman, chairman of the Stroud Jordan Selection Committee, that there was “some kind of mistake,”  adding jokingly that she was “way too young” for this.

She went on to thank her parents for their efforts in raising a family while operating a dairy farm in western Pennsylvania. Stauffer also cited Henry and Joe Blommer as mentors, noting their passion and insight for the industry.