She has guided programs for national and state commodity promotion groups, including the National Honey Board, Chilean Avocado Importers Association, Washington State Potato Commission, Soyfoods Council, Washington Apple Commission, Pink Lady® Apples, Roman Meal Bread, Coastline Produce, The Soyfoods Council, Driscoll Berries, Sharp Electronics, California Table Grape Commission, California Kiwifruit Commission, North American Blueberry Council, Washington Red Raspberry Commission, Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, Ocean Mist Farms, D’Arrigo Brothers (Andy Boy produce), Sunsweet Growers, American Egg Board, Washington Egg Commission, National Watermelon Board and United Soybean Board.
Before creating The Food Professionals, Inc. in 2000, Dee was a founding partner of EMB Partners, Inc., where she guided the agency’s food business, including Driscoll’s berries, Sunsweet Growers, the Washington Egg Commission, American Egg Board and D’Arrigo Brothers Company (Andy Boy produce), among many others.
As president of the Evans Food Group she directed consumer public relations and promotions programs and foodservice advertising, promotion and public relations programs for 22 commodity clients, including Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, National Honey Board, California Kiwifruit Commission, California Table Grape Commission, North American Blueberry Council, National Watermelon Board and many others. She was key to Evans Group’s gaining the multi-million dollar United Soybean Board business.
At Cole & Weber advertising, Seattle, she was vice president of the Food Center, directing consumer programs for Roman Meal Bread and foodservice programs for the Washington Apple Commission and Lamb-Weston Foods.
Before moving to Seattle, Dee spent eight years as vice president, advertising, foodservice and consumer education for the American Egg Board, Chicago. She directed the multi-million dollar and award-winning Incredible Edible Egg® national consumer ad campaign, AEB’s many publicity and educational programs to consumers and regular professional training seminars for state egg association promotion personnel. She created AEB’s foodservice department and initiated their first-ever foodservice advertising and promotion campaign and a wide variety of foodservice educational programs.
Dee’s decades of experience also includes positions as assistant food editor for Better Homes & Gardens and food editor for Institutions magazine (now Restaurants and Institutions). She has written and edited numerous cookbooks. She edited the very first edition of the Culinary Institute of America’s The Professional Chef and she and Kate Munson most recently completed two major books for Sharp Electronics. She has also written a regular feature on commodity boards for Flavor and the Menu magazine.
She has often acted as a media spokesperson for her clients and is frequently a speaker on food and consumer trends, most recently at the annual conference of the International Association of Culinary Professionals, the Consumer Trends Forum International, the Dairy Marketing Institute’s Cheese program, the International Microwave Power Institute annual conference, the Washington State Potato Commission and the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Produce Academy.
Dee has been very active in food-related professional organizations, including IFEC (International Foodservice Editorial Conference), PRSA (Public Relations Society of America), IACP (International Association of Culinary Professionals) and Consumer Trends Forum International. She created the program for the 2003 Consumer Trends Forum.
She has been recognized by IACP with their Marketing Communicator Award of Excellence, by HEIB (Home Economists in Business) as Business Home Economist of the Year, and by her alma mater, Purdue University, as Outstanding Graduate and Outstanding Alumna.
Her programs regularly win awards from the National Agri-Marketing Association, the Public Relations Society of America, the Food Marketing Institute and others.She considers her most important rewards the positive long-term relationships she has with her clients and fellow food professionals, her son and daughter (and partner in The Food Professionals), and her two grandchildren.