The National Confectioners Association’s (NCA) Board of Trustees announced the appointment of John H. Downs, Jr., to president of the trade association.
Downs, a senior advisor to the president of Coca-Cola Americas for The Coca-Cola Company, succeeds Lawrence T. Graham. Graham is retiring later this month after working for the NCA for more than 20 years.
In his most current position at The Coca-Cola Company, Downs has focused on strategic stakeholder engagement, government relations and public affairs in North America and Latin America. During his tenure with the company, Downs was vice president of global government, diplomatic, and stakeholder relations for The Coca-Cola Company. He also served as the senior vice president of public affairs and communications for Coca-Cola Enterprises. Downs has been with the Coca-Cola organization since 1986 when he joined the Mid-Atlantic Coca-Cola Bottling Company as a vice president. Downs has experience in public affairs, government relations, communications, association management, international affairs, and corporate social responsibility.
Downs will assume the role as president of NCA this summer. In this position, Downs will be responsible for managing both strategic direction and daily operations. The 25-person team in Washington, DC, has an extensive public policy agenda; is the organizer of the American confectionery industry’s largest trade show, the Sweets & Snacks Expo; conducts both scientific and shopper research; has a well-established international marketing program for US-made products; and serves as the primary voice for the chocolate, cocoa, non-chocolate and gum industries in the US across a variety of audiences.