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Dear WCF Members and Supporters:
I want to take this opportunity, the last such that I will have in my current role, to thank all of you, and especially WCF Chairman Barry Parkin, Vice Chair Steven Retzlaff and Treasurer Terry O’Day, for the many encouragements that you have provided to me and the rest of the WCF team since January 1. To my colleagues at WCF, and particularly my fellow leadership team members Jill Harris and Paul Macek, I will always be grateful to you for the unwavering dedication that you showed to WCF’s mission as we made this journey together.
I believe that all of us can look back on the past six months with satisfaction and as a period of continued progress for WCF as we moved through an unprecedented leadership transition. I am confident that the successful transition positions WCF even more favorably as we prepare to welcome Rick Scobey, who assumes office as WCF’s new president on this upcoming Monday, July 11.
Many of you have already had an opportunity to meet Rick, who even before formally joining WCF has taken advantage of two recent major international cocoa conferences – ICCO’s World Cocoa Conference in the Dominican Republic and Chocovision in Switzerland – to enthusiastically engage with a wide range of members, producing country governments and other key stakeholders. For those of you who have not yet met Rick, he comes to WCF after a successful career at the World Bank, which he first joined in 1986. He has led public-private efforts focused on natural resources management in Africa, as well as monitoring and evaluation efforts. His most recent position at the Bank was as its deputy director general in the Independent Evaluation Group. He previously also served as Advisor to the Africa Region Vice President and as Director for Regional Integration in Africa.
You will of course be hearing from Rick in the days ahead. I personally look forward to working with Rick to ensure the smoothest of landings for him here at WCF.
The rest of 2016 promises to be an especially dynamic time for WCF under our new leadership, with CocoaAction moving further into its implementation phase and seeking to attract new industry partners, initiatives such as WCF’s PSP and Climate Smart Agriculture programs being launched, and our Partnership Meeting taking place in Côte d’Ivoire for the first time ever. I know that all of you join with me in wishing Rick every success as he joins WCF and applies his talents and vision to the rest of 2016 and beyond.
With warm regards,