About

About

The U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council is the blueberry industry growers’ voice to consumers.

The USHBC’s
Bluetiful Mission

  • Earning and maintaining market confidence through good agricultural practices and good management practices
  • Generating research findings on the health benefits associated with blueberries and collaborating with the industry to ensure they are continually communicated to consumers

The USHBC’s mission is to serve growers and handlers by growing a healthy highbush blueberry industry. The Council supports farms like yours through promotion, research, and education while increasing awareness and consumption of blueberries. The USHBC supports the blueberry industry in a variety of critical ways, including:

  • Improving grower and handler participation in pursuit of the USHBC’s and the blueberry industry’s goals
  • Initiating activities that will increase demand for highbush blueberries in all the varied forms and settings in which they are offered, and encouraging the expansion of these forms and settings.

The NABC

While the USHBC is a federal research and promotion program, the North American Blueberry Council (NABC) is a voluntary organization that serves as the voice of the highbush blueberry industry. While the audiences the NABC and the USHBC serve overlap, their missions are very different. The NABC’s duties include legislative, executive, and regulatory interface and liaison on behalf of the blueberry industry.

Officers, Members, and Staff

The USHBC exists thanks to the dedication and passion of members throughout the blueberry industry. To ensure that the council is always a diverse representation of our industry, the USHBC has adopted a diversity outreach plan.

USHBC Executive Officers

Chairman: Chris Barnhill
Vice Chairman: Shelly Hartmann
Treasurer: Brittany Lee
Secretary: George Fritz, Jr.
Member at Large: Bill Steed
Past Chairman: Art Galletta

USHBC Staff

Executive Director: Mark Villata
Assistant Manager: Julie Fogarty
Marketing Manager: Victoria De Bruin
Compliance Coordinator: Rick Ruckman
Office Manager: Mary Nezbeth
Administrative Assistant: Mandy Boarman

States

California

Member - William Steed
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Young Kwun
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Florida

Member - Brittany Lee
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Janet Swilley
First Term Ends - 12/31/19

Georgia

Member - John Bennett
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Jerome Crosby
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Michigan

Member - George Fritz, Jr.
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Bob Carini
First Term Ends 12/31/19

New Jersey

Member - Denny Doyle
Second Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Paul Macrie, III
First Term Ends 12/31/19

North Carolina

Member - Chris Barnhill
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Neil Moore
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Oregon

Member - Steve Erickson
Second Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Doug Krahmer
Second Term Ends 12/31/19

Washington

Member - Rob Dhaliwal
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Bryan Sakuma
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Handler, Importers, Exporters & Public Members

Handler

Member - Guy Cotton
Second Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Risa Bakker
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Importer #1

Member - John Johnston
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Bonnie Lundblad
First Term Ends 12/31/21

Importer #2

Member - Brian Bocock
Second Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Brian Caster
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Importer #3

Member - Janice Honigberg
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Andrew Maiman
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Importer #4

Member - Bo Slack
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Tom Bodtke
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Exporter #1

Member - Jorge Andres Varela
Second Term Ends 12/31/21

Alternate - Carlos Abujatum
First Term Ends 12/31/21

Exporter #2

Member - Ray Biln
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Alternate - Jesse Brar
First Term Ends 12/31/19

Public Member

Member - Amy Howell, PhD
First Term Ends 12/31/21

Alternate - Bill Cline
First Term Ends 12/31/21

Regions

Western

Member - Mark Hurst
Second Term Ends 12/31/18

Alternate - Verne Gingerich
Second Term Ends 12/31/18

Midwest

Member - Patricia Goin
First Term Ends 12/31/18

Alternate - Shelly Ann Hartmann
First Term Ends 12/31/18

Northeast

Member - Art Galletta
First Term Ends 12/31/18

Alternate - Dave Arena
First Term Ends 12/31/18

Southeast

Member - Bill Braswell
Second Term Ends 12/31/18

Alternate - Jerod Gross
First Term Ends 12/31/18

Committees

Assigned committee members are not elected USHBC members, but are assigned to committees because of special expertise.

Executive

Chairman – Chris Barnhill (NC)

Vice Chairman – Shelly Hartmann (MI) 

Treasurer – Brittany Lee (FL)

Secretary – George Fritz, Jr. (MI)

Member at Large – Bill Steed (CA)

Past Chairman – Art Galletta (NJ)

Finance

Chairman: George Fritz, Jr. (MI)

Vice Chair: Brittany Lee (FL)

Risa Bakker, Handler (CA)

John Bennett (GA)

Art Galletta, Region 3 (NJ)

Janice Honigberg, Importer 2 (IL)

Mark Hurst (OR)

John Johnston, Importer 1 (CA)

Doug Krahmer (OR)

Lorrie Merker, Assigned Committee Member (MI)

Neil Moore (NC)

Bill Steed (CA)

USHBC Chairman: Chris Barnhill (NC)

Health Research

Chairman: Dave Brazelton, Assigned Committee Chair (OR)

Karen Avinelis, Assigned Committee Member (CA)

Amy Howell, Ph.D., Public Member (NJ)

Mike Mainland, Ph.D., Assigned Committee Member (NC)

Adair Peterson, Assigned Committee Member (GA)

Mark Sweeney, Ph.D., Assigned Committee Member (Canada)

Dave Trinka, Assigned Committee Member (MI)

Leslie Wada, Ph.D., Assigned Committee Member (CA)

Dave Wyckoff, Assigned Committee Member (WA)

USHBC Chairman: Chris Barnhill (NC)

Good Practices

Chairman: Denny Doyle (NJ)

Cecilia Allende, Assigned Committee Member (PA)

Cort Brazelton, Assigned Committee Member (OR)

Christy Butler, Assigned Committee Member (OR)

Brian Caster, Handler (CA)

Verne Gingerich, Western Region (OR)

Pat Goin, Midwest Region (IN)

Carlos Abujatum, Exproter 1 (Chile)

Paul Macrie (NJ)

Ellie Norris, Region 1 (OR)

Bryan Sakuma (WA)

Jason Smith, Assigned Committee Member (B.C., Canada)

USHBC Chairman, Chris Barnhill (NC)

Industry Relations

Chairman: Bo Slack, Assigned Committee Chair (WA)

Dave Arena, Eastern Region (NJ)

Tom Bodtke, Importer 4 (MI)

Jesse Brar, Exporter 2 (Canada)

Guy Cotton, Handler (CA)

Rob Dhaliwal (WA)

Steve Erickson (OR)

Ryan Atwood, Southern Region (FL)

Young Kwun (CA)

Andrew Maiman, Importer 3

Stacy Spivey (FL)

Janet Swilley (FL)                                                                           

Jorge Varela, Exporter 1 (Chile)                                                           

USHBC Chairman: Chris Barnhill (NC)

Promotion Committee

Chairman – Bob Carini (MI)

CarrieAnn Arias, Assigned Committee Member (CA)

Andres Armstrong, Assigned Committee Member (Chile)

Ray Biln, Exporter 2 (Canada)

Brian Bocock, Importer 2 (MI)

Stan Crafton, Assigned Committee Member (CO)

Denny Doyle (NJ)

Shelly Hartmann, Region 2 (MI)

Zack Kuster, Assigned Committee Member (MI)

Bonnie Lundblad, Importer 1 (NJ)

Jeff Malensky, Assigned Committee Member (OR)

Ken Patterson, Assigned Committee Member (FL)

Nathan Sakuma, Assigned Committee Member (WA)

John Shelford, Assigned Committee Member (FL)

USHBC Chairman – Chris Barnhill (NC)

Export Subcommittee

Chairman: Dave Arena, Eastern Region (NJ)

Bob Carini (MI)

Mark Hurst, Assigned Committee Member (OR)

Jeff Malensky, Assigned Committee Member (OR)

David Munger, Assigned Committee Member (CA)

Nathan Sakuma, Assigned Committee Member (WA)

Don Van De Werken, Assigned Committee Member (MS)

USHBC Chairman, Chris Barnhill (NC)

Blueberry Technology Subcommittee

Chairman: Rod Cook, Assigned Committee Chair (WA)

Andres Armstrong, Assigned Committee Member (Chile)

Christy Butler, Assigned Committee Member (OR)

Michael Christensen, Assigned Committee Member 

Mark Hurst, Assigned Committee Member (OR)

Mike Mainland, Ph.D., Assigned Committee Member (NC)

Mike Makara, Assigned Committee Member (B.C., Canada)

Paul Macrie (NJ)

Rex Schultz, Assigned Committee Member (MI)

USHBC Chairman: Chris Barnhill (NC)