The California Grocers Association has announced the appointments of Lance Hastings as vice president, government relations, and Gilbert Canizales as director of local government.

In addition, David Heylen has been promoted to vice president, communications.

Hastings will be responsible for overseeing all government relations activities for the Association. Prior to CGA, Hastings was director, state affairs for Grocery Manufacturers of America and was responsible for tracking state legislative and regulatory affairs in the Western region of the United States.

He worked as chief consultant to Assemblyman Keith Olberg (R), overseeing the development and implementation of legislative strategy. He also worked for Assemblyman David Knowles (R) and U.S. Rep. John Doolittle (R-Rocklin).

Gilbert Canizales was District Representative for California State Senator Berry Karnette, 27th District. His responsibilities included organizing and coordinating community, public and press relations.

"We are excited to bring these two individuals on board and believe they will help the association take its government relations efforts to the next level," said CGA President Peter Larkin. "Both are very knowledgeable regarding the legislative, regulatory and local government process."

David Heylen has been with the Association for 13 years as publications and communications director. He is responsible for all communications projects including California Grocer magazine, the CGA and Western Food Industry Exposition websites, media relations and the Association's Supplier Executive Council.

The California Grocers Association is a non-profit, statewide trade association representing the food industry since 1898. CGA represents approximately 500 retail members operating over 6,000 food stores in California and Nevada, and approximately 300 grocery supplier companies. Retail membership includes chain and independent supermarkets, convenience stores and mass merchandisers. The association is recognized as the industry leader in the areas of government and industry relations, public relations, education and communications. CGA maintains its headquarters in Sacramento with a satellite office in Long Beach.