WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Confectioners Association (NCA) honored Ed Schultz, president and CEO of Hawaiian Host Group, with the 2023 Advocate of the Year award at the 2023 State of the Industry Conference, held in early March in Aventura, Fla.
Schultz, who has been president of Hawaiian Host Group since 2018, worked to communicate important policy positions for the confectionery industry on numerous issues facing the Hawaii legislature in 2022. His strategic engagement and strong relationships gave him a seat at the table to advocate for his company and the broader confectionery industry. Additionally, his efforts stopped harmful legislation from moving forward, and he continues to educate members of the legislature on issues that impact the industry, according to NCA.
"Ed's leadership and dedication to the industry are exemplified by the outcomes he has achieved for the industry in Hawaii, making him truly deserving of this recognition," said John Downs, NCA president and CEO.
Schultz is currently on the board of the Hawaii Chapter of Young Presidents Organization and the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii.
"It is an honor to receive this award and advocate on behalf of our company and the many others in the confectionery industry," Schultz said. "We must be engaged when new policies are put forward by elected officials at all levels, and I look forward to continuing to share the important role that the confectionery industry plays in our communities and in our great state of Hawaii."
Schultz is among a handful of honorees who were recognized at NCA's 2023 State of the Industry Conference. Hoffman Vogler CEO Audra Vogler was presented with the 2023 Woman of Influence Award, while two industry veterans, Ross Born, who served as CEO of Just Born Quality Confections before his recent retirement, and Anton Vincent, president of Mars Wrigley North America, were honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Distinguished Service Award, respectively.
Hawaiian Host Group is a Hawaii-based consumer packaged goods company with a portfolio of brands that includes Hawaiian Host, Mauna Loa and KOHO. It produces 40-plus products, consumed in more than 23 countries, that range from flavored macadamia nuts to artisan chocolates and plant-based ice cream (made from macadamia nut milk). The company also operates manufacturing plants on O'ahu and Hawai‘i Island.
Washington, D.C.-based NCA is the leading trade organization for the U.S. confectionery industry, which generates $42 billion in retail sales each year.