The governing board of the Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT), the northwest Ohio affiliate of the Ohio Manufacturing Extension Partnership, and a recognized leader in providing technical innovations and solutions to regional manufacturers with special expertise in the food processing industry, appointed Rebecca A. Singer as president and CEO effective Jan. 1, 2017.

After more than eight years at the helm, current CIFT president and CEO Dave Beck announced his retirement in August.  Beck has been with the organization since its inception in 1995.

“Rebecca is the perfect choice to lead CIFT on its continued path of success,” stated William J. Hirzel, chairman of the board, CIFT.  “Rebecca recognizes the importance of the manufacturing sector to our region, and understands the tools that can be used to help it grow.”

One of the senior staff members at CIFT, Singer has identified and evaluated numerous strategies to advance emerging technologies, provided direction to many small business initiatives, and helped to establish a network of regional partners to represent the Ohio MEP throughout the 19 counties of northwest Ohio.

Prior to joining CIFT in 2001, she worked with the Ohio Department of Agriculture as the OHIO PROUD coordinator and direct marketing specialist.  A graduate of the Ohio Leadership Education and Development program, Singer participated in tours of various statewide and international businesses.  In 2006, she traveled to Israel at the invitation of the Negev Foundation, touring various agricultural and food technology facilities.  She was a recipient of the 2007 Young Professional Achievement Award given by The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences Alumni Society.  It was at Ohio State where she earned her bachelor’s degree in agribusiness and applied economics.  She has also attended many professional development programs in Lean manufacturing, Six Sigma, manufacturing quality systems, food safety programs, and has served on several planning and advisory boards.

Singer joined the organization in 2001, and becomes the third president and CEO in the history of CIFT.