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Board of Directors

Katie Hensley, Chairperson
Swanson Pickle
Jon W. Allan, Vice-Chairperson
University of Michigan School for Environment and Sustainability

Jim Edmonson, Secretary

Muskegon Area First

Jonathan Wilson, Treasurer

DTE Energy

Jodi Gruner

Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development

Rich Houtteman

Consumers Energy

Todd Jacobs

Community Foundation for Muskegon County

John Kinahan

Hanson Logistics

Jason Murray

LaColombe Coffee Roasters

Dan Rinsema-Sybenga

Muskegon Community College

Association Team

The West Michigan Shoreline Food Processing Association was officially launched on October 30, 2017 with an initial team of expert consultants led by Marty Gerencer, Principal of Morse Marketing Connections and an expert in the food processing industry. Other consultants include experts in food processing education, site consulting, economic development, and international business development. The team of experts include:

Marty Gerencer

Executive Director

Based in Muskegon, Michigan, Morse Marketing Connections, LLC (MMC) is a business consulting firm for food companies and organizations, owned and operated by Marty Gerencer since 2002.  Prior to the launch of MMC, Marty spent over 20 years with Gerber Products Company and worked with cross-functional teams to implement collaborative approaches to business practices.  While at Gerber, Marty received the Chairman’s Award for her role in a collaborative baby and toddler marketing program that engaged multiple internal departments and several outside agencies and companies. Read More >>


Vivek Gnanasekharan

Senior Consultant

Vivek Gnanasekharan recently retired as Director of Global Innovation at Nestlé Nutrition North America (Gerber) after a 11 year career with the company with focus on providing leadership in Research and Development, as well as, strategic leadership for products, process and packaging development and brand maintenance. Vivek has extensive cross-functional experience with marketing, finance, operations, sales, consumer insights, product supply, procurement and contract manufacturing.   Prior to joining Gerber Products Company, he had a thirteen year career with Frito Lay in Plano, Texas in a variety of roles including new business propositions, process development, and team leadership.  His technology expertise includes baking, extrusion (low and high pressure), freeze drying, thermal processing (hot fill, retort, and asecptic), compression popping and pellet expansion, HPP, sheeting and molding, and frying. Vivek has a Ph.D, in Food Engineering from Purdue University, a Masters Degree from the University of Georgia in Food Science and Technology, and a Bachelors Degree in Chemical Engineering from Annamalai University.

Clarence Rudat

Senior Consultant-Education

Clarence is the Program Coordinator for the Michigan State University (MSU) Institute of Agriculture Technology partnership in Muskegon, overseeing the agriculture associate degree program at Muskegon Community College and the MSU certificate programs in Agriculture Operations, Fruit and Vegetable Management, and Landscape Management. He was instrumental in launching the mobile food lab concept at MSU along with the being the lead developer of the Food Science and Processing Certificate program.    

Dennis Marvin

Senior Consultant, Programs and Communications

Dennis recently retired from Consumers Energy after a 34 year career in Community Engagement, Economic Development, Public Affairs, and Media Relations. Prior to his retirement, Dennis led the community transition process for the closure of the BC Cobb and JR Whiting facilities. He spent over 12 years involved in international business and economic development programs for Consumers Energy and CMS Energy in Asia with focus in Japan, Korea, and China, as well as, Northern Africa, Australia, and Argentina. Dennis is currently Principal of Community Engagement Services, LLC.


The West Michigan Food Processing Association is supported by the Consumers Energy Foundation, Community Foundation for Muskegon County, and other regional stakeholders.

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