Consumer candle safety and fair trade policies are top priorities for the National Candle Association (NCA), which hosted its 2017 Conference & Expo recently in St. Petersburg, FL. Nearly 400 industry professionals gathered for the association’s 43rd annual meeting and exposition.
Among the orders of business at the meeting was the election of the following directors and officers for the 2017-2018 fiscal year:
· Kathy LaVanier of Renegade Candles was elected NCA president;
· Bob Nelson of Yankee Candle will continue to serve as vice president/president elect;
· George Pappas II of Lumi-Lite Candle Company will resume his position as 1st vice president;
· Tom Donnelly of Alene Candles will serve as 2nd vice president;
· Chris Rakyta of Candle-Lite Company will assume the role of treasurer.
NCA also seized the occasion of the annual assembly to pay tribute to those whose work has made a significant contribution to the industry or community. NCA’s Hall of Fame Award was bestowed upon two deserving industry leaders in recognition of the lasting impact of their professional dedication.
Jeb Head, president of Atkins & Pierce, a seventh generation family-owned company which has served as a supplier to candle makers for 200 years; and John Witham, head of research and development at Candle-Lite, an American candle company founded in 1840 were honored.
NCA also recognized ScentsAbility, a nonprofit organization that helps individuals with special needs learn job skills and become independent through making and selling candles.
In addition to the leadership elections and awards, the NCA conference agenda included trend sessions, research presentations, board and committee meetings and the annual business meeting.