The United Fresh Produce Association is accepting nominations to help choose the honoree to speak at the group’s annual Reception Honoring Women in Produce.

The reception is scheduled for June 12 at the United Fresh 2014 convention in Chicago, according to a news release from the Washington, D.C.-based association.

The event recognizes the contributions of all women working in the produce industry and honors one outstanding female industry leader, according to the release.

“This event is a great time to celebrate the contributions so many women make to the produce industry,” United Fresh president and chief executive officer Tom Stenzel said in the release. “Each year, we have the opportunity to be inspired by the personal career paths of different leaders who serve as role models to us all, men and women alike.”

“It was an amazing experience to be awarded this honor last year,” Lisa McNeece, 2013 Women in Produce Honoree and vice president of foodservice and industrial sales for Grimmway Enterprises Inc., said in the release. “I encourage the produce industry to participate in the nomination process and recognize the many outstanding women who contribute to our industry.”

Nomination forms may be downloaded online at and must be received by Thursday, March 27, according to the release. More information is available at the United Fresh website and by contacting United Fresh political affairs manager Angela Tiwari at 202-303-3416 or, according to the release.

 Past Women in Produce Honorees include:

  • Dan’l Mackey Almy, DMA Solutions, Inc.;
  • Tonya Antle, Tanimura & Antle;
  • Frieda Rapoport Caplan, Frieda’s Inc.;
  • Margaret D’Arrigo , Taylor Farms, Inc.;
  • Jan DeLyser, California Avocado Commission;
  • Jan Fleming, Strube Celery & Vegetable Company;
  • Janice Honigberg, Sun Belle, Inc.;
  • Lorri Koster, Mann Packing Company;
  • Lisa McNeece, Grimmway Farms;
  • Kathleen Nave, California Table Grape Commission ;
  • Dr. Martha Rhodes-Roberts, University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences;
  • Steffanie Smith, River Point Farms, LLC;
  • Heather Shavey, Costco Wholesale;
  • Mayda Sotomayor-Kirk, Seald Sweet International;
  • Rosemary Talley, Talley Farms; and
  • Jenney Tenney, The Kroger Co.