The NCA has chosen the inaugural class of its Future Leadership Program.

The 2016 class is made up of a mix of young professionals, including one of the confectionery industry's youngest CEOs, people who have watched their family businesses grow within the industry, and a young confectionery broker.

The program is designed to provide support, education, access, and opportunity to those wishing to advance into the ranks of leadership. It will last the duration of the 2016 calendar year and includes complimentary registration to the NCA's State of the Industry Conference (Feb. 28 – March 2), the Sweets & Snacks Expo (May 24-26) and the Washington Forum (Sept. 28-29).

Program participants will also be paired with an established leader within the industry, who will act as a formal mentor.

“Aligned with NCA’s vision of advancing the confectionery industry, the Future Leadership Program was developed to help build knowledge and leadership skills while raising the visibility of talented young professionals,” says John Downs, president and ceo, NCA. “Congratulations to the inaugural class, I look forward to interacting with each of them and tracking their future success.”

The 2016 Future Leadership Program class is:

Sarah Atkinson
Director of Marketing
Atkinson Candy Co.

Elizabeth Clair
National Confectionery Sales Manager
Barry Callebaut

Byard Ebling
Client Development Manager/Business Manager
Shankman & Associates

Amy Guittard
Director of Marketing
Guittard Chocolate Co.

Chris Jenco
Jenco Brothers’ Candy

Applications for the 2017 class will open in August, and those interested in getting involved can contact VJ Mayor at