The Grocery Manufacturers Association has announced that Richard H Lenny, chairman, president and CEO of The Hershey Company has been elected as the new chairman of the its board of directors for a two-year term.

"During my tenure as chairman of the GMA board, I have been proud to be part of a team that has helped move our industry forward along many important fronts," said outgoing GMA chairman James Kilts, chairman, president and CEO of The Gillette Company. "With his exceptional knowledge of the industry and the great respect he commands among his peers, Rick Lenny can be counted on to provide the dynamic leadership we need to face the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead."

"GMA plays a critically important role today on behalf of the food, beverage and consumer products industry," said Lenny. "It provides exceptional leadership both in capturing the immense growth potential of its members and in representing their interests with a wide range of constituencies. For nearly a century, GMA has advanced our interests on key issues affecting the ability of brand manufacturers to market their products profitably and deliver superior value to the consumer. We're fortunate that it has the leadership of officers, directors and staff dedicated to continuing this great tradition over the coming years."

GMA also announced the election of new board officers for a one-year term. They are, Roger K Deromedi, CEO, of Kraft Foods, who becomes vice-chairman, Gregg L Engles, chairman and CEO of  Dean Foods, who is treasurer and William Wrigley  Jr,  chairman, president and CEO of Wm. Wrigley Company who is secretary.

"GMA's new officers have overseen the transformation of their respective companies," said GMA president and CEO C Manly Molpus. "We are extremely fortunate to have leaders of such calibre to help GMA stay ahead of the curve during a very dynamic time for the CPG industry."

Additionally, GMA announced the election of five new members of the board of directors:

Brenda C. Barnes, president and CEO, Sara Lee Corporation Bradley Casper, president and CEO, The Dial Corporation, James R. Craigie, president and CEO, Church & Dwight Company Inc, George E. Deese, president and CEO, Flowers Foods Inc and Neil DeFeo, president and CEO, Playtex Products Inc.