Today, only 20% of company boards have women as directors. Governments, investors, consumers and companies all agree that we can do better. But how?
Enter Sheryl O’Loughlin, Melissa Facchina and Kara Cissell-Roell, who set up Women on Board Project in February 2020 to increase the number of women serving on the boards of early-stage consumer companies.
The WOB Project originally collaborated with 20 venture capital and private equity firms to place women exes on the boards of their portfolio companies, and has grown to 30+ companies, a 1,000+ network of women and 10 investor organisations.
Its strategy is two-pronged: to identify the private companies that are ready for change, while supporting the talented women through all the steps of the journey. It also works to expand diversity, including race, ethnicity, age, socio-economic status and sexual orientation/gender fluidity.
For years, corporate boardrooms across the US have resembled locker rooms, and those in the food sector are no different. But that is changing.
The latest partner to climb aboard is Milton’s Craft Bakers .
The Carlsbad-based producer has appointed Michelle Stacy, Ilana Fischer and Ronnie Robinson to its Board of Directors to accelerate the brand’s growth and notability as one of the nation’s better-for-you (in all ways) companies.
“The Women on Boards Project is thrilled to partner with Milton’s Craft Bakers to place Michelle and Ilana on its Board of Directors,” said Cassie Burr, executive director of WOB Project.
“Both women have strong leadership skills that will demand attention at the table. I know they will flourish in their new board placements and contribute to the brand's ongoing success.”
Each newly appointed board member have the skills and qualities to support Milton’s growth trajectory for years to come.
Stacy is an executive with more than 30 years of experiencing building brands like Gillette, P&G, and Keurig, helping the latter maintain its number one coffeemaker status for more than two years. She has also served on the board of large companies such as iRobot Corp, Zesty Paws, Hydrafacial Inc., and Tervis Tumbler Co.
Fischer began to pursue her passion for food in 2014 when she joined Schuman Cheese, where she oversaw strategic planning and growth, and was instrumental in the launch of Whisps. Under her leadership, the cheese snacks grew into a $40m brand in less than three years, at which point Fischer led the sale of Schuman to Kainos Capital in 2019.
Robinson brings a proven and recognised track record of leading large teams, and implementing market, national and global business strategies, specifically regarding product innovation, sourcing, and sustainability initiatives.
Added John Reaves, Milton’s CEO and president, “The addition of Michelle, Ilana and Ronnie to our Board of Directors brings high-quality expertise to the Milton’s team and will certainly contribute to our success in 2023.
“All three board members have extensive industry experience and are highly regarded CPG leaders with a keen eye for strategy, growth and innovation. As a result, we are very much looking forward to their fresh perspectives that will undoubtedly add value to Milton’s.”
Foods for everyone
Understanding and innovating for the needs of today’s consumer, Milton’s Craft Bakers offers a range of crispy gluten-free, organic and gourmet crackers, craft breads and cauliflower crust pizza.
As consumers increasingly look for healthier and convenient meal options, Milton’s certified gluten-free cauli crust pizzas deliver authentic pizzeria taste in just 15 minutes. The crust is now rolling out in Walmart stores in three variants: Uncured Pepperoni, Margherita Four Cheese and Four Cheese.
Milton’s products can be found in grocery and club stores nationwide, including Sprouts, Whole Foods Market, Albertsons, Safeway, Kroger, Walmart, Costco and on Amazon.