Speakers

  • Convene Conference Center, NY
  • September 10, 2019

SPEAKERS

Our 2019 speakers will be announced in the summer. Below is information about our 2018 speakers.

 

Charles Apt
President and Chief Operating Officer, Sarabeth's Kitchen

President and Chief Operating Officer of Sarabeth's Kitchen, a company composed of several entities including a bakery and cafe, factory & warehouse, and licensing entity of the Sarabeth's brand to restaurants.  Prior to joining Sarabeth's, Mr. Apt served as President and Chief Operating Officer of Ciao Bella Gelato Company, a leading brand in the premium ice cream category, from August 1993 - May 2011.  Under Mr. Apt's leadership, Ciao Bella Gelato Company maintained manufacturing, warehousing and retail operations in New York City , San Francisco, Los Angeles and Chicago.  Additionally, Ciao Bella Gelato received multiple Sofi awards and was featured on both the Oprah Winfrey Show, as well as NBC's, The Apprentice.  Mr. Apt has also served on industry committees for the Specialty Food Association ( currently a Board Member ) and was a guest speaker for the Institute of  Culinary Education.  He has served as an advisor and board member to several specialty food companies, including Blue Marble Ice Cream and DF Mavens. Mr. Apt received a Bachelor's degree in Economics and Political Science from Haverford College and received a Master's degree in Business Administration from Columbia University.

As the President and Chief Operating Officer of two specialty food brands in grocery and dairy-frozen (categories), Mr. Apt has gained significant experience in product and package innovation ( e.g. Sofi award, package renovation, and new retail products for Sarabeth's since 2011 ), brand positioning and promotion, financial reporting, human resources, and (logistics) and operations including manufacturing, distribution, technology and food service. 

Louis Biscotti
Food and Beverage Services Leader, Marcum LLP

Louis Biscotti is the national leader of Marcum's Food and Beverage Services group. He has been an entrepreneurial leader in accounting for over 40 years.

Mr. Biscotti has focused his efforts on improving his clients' growth and profitability and has guided many companies in their development from small emerging entities into organizations worth hundreds of millions of dollars. While his clients represent a variety of industries, he is particularly well known for his work in manufacturing and distribution, especially with food and beverage companies.

Mr. Biscotti's multi-disciplinary background as a CPA with an MBA that includes an advanced study in manufacturing, systems analysis, management consulting, strategic planning and technology, and his designation as a CITP (Certified Information Technology Professional), has earned him national recognition as an accounting and business management specialist.

He is a frequent lecturer and published author on various financial and business topics. He contributes a monthly column to Forbes, on the food and beverage industry. His expert advice has also appeared in both national and local publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Newsday, Long Island and New Jersey Business News, Supermarket News, and Food Dive. He is a featured panelist and speaker at local and national events, including the WCBS Annual Small Business Breakfasts, Bloomberg Radio, and the Capital Roundtable series.

Mr. Biscotti founded a series of best practice forums for food and beverage companies, which attract nearly 500 senior executives annually, as well as an annual food and beverage survey. He has been honored several times in "Who's Who in Accounting" in Long Island Business News.

An active member of many local chambers of commerce, Mr. Biscotti served as a trustee for the Foundation for Accounting Education and was a board member of the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants (NYSSCPA). He is a former president of the Accounting Circle and an Executive Advisory Board member of St. John's, his alma mater, and Molloy College. He also serves on the advisory boards for many of his clients, where the cumulative experience of his 40 years in practice and work with nearly 1,000 companies gives those clients an invaluable edge.

Susan Guerin
President & CEO, World Finer Foods

A respected business leader, Guerin is known for her ability to drive change and improve profitability while supporting top line growth. With a depth of international experience, specifically in consumer products, retail and apparel, she has worked with large multinational and small, domestic corporations.

In 2013, Guerin joined World Finer Foods, with more than 60 food and personal care brands, as Chief Financial Officer, responsible for finance, strategy, IT and supply chain. In 2014, Guerin was appointed President of World Finer Foods and in 2015 became the CEO. Since taking on this role, Guerin has rationalized and pivoted the portfolio of brands that are more aligned with consumers' current tastes and needs, while improving cash flow, profitability, technology and services.

As a Managing Partner of Stratham Hills Partners, Guerin consulted for large and small clients on strategy development and execution, and supported entrepreneurs in launching startup companies and creating successful liquidity events. Previously, as SVP and CFO at Sun Chemical, a $4B company, Guerin led finance, IT, shared services, customer service, and the global packaging solutions business. As President of the Americas Apparel business at Paxar, Guerin led a successful turnaround, leading to undisputed market leadership and eventual takeover by Avery Dennison. Prior to Paxar, Guerin was the CFO of the Vehicle Services Division of Cendant Corporation and CFO of New York & Company. She began her career at Unilever, where she held management roles, both in the U.S. and overseas.

Guerin is a member of the Board and Finance Committee for Smith Foods, serves on the Board of Down the Block and has served on the boards of Vyteris Corporation, Paralec Corporation and Dr. Park Avenue. She has been recognized for her work at World Finer Foods as a winner of the Brava Award honoring top female CEOs, and a finalist for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award. She is a member of the Dean's Advisory Board, President's Council, Class Board and is the Reunion Chair for Cornell University.

Guerin holds a Masters of Business Administration degree from New York University and a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University.

Dan Horan
CEO, Five Acres Farms

Dan Horan has been creating and building food and farming businesses for nearly 30 years. He founded Five Acre Farms to keep farmers farming and bring the best local food to more people. Before launching Five Acre Farms, Dan served for 10 years as President & CEO of Papaya King, the New York-based restaurant company, and was a General Manager at Gourmet Garage, an independent supermarket in New York City. In 1990, Dan founded Waldingfield Farm, an organic vegetable farm in Washington, Connecticut. As the business grew, he recruited his two younger brothers to join him, and Waldingfield Farm continues to operate to this day. Dan serves on the Board of Directors of the Housatonic Valley Association, which protects the natural character and environmental health of the entire Housatonic Watershed. He graduated from Tufts University and earned an MBA from the Yale School of Management.