Kevin Moffitt
Kevin Moffitt

Later this year, Kevin Moffitt will begin leaving Pear Bureau Northwest after 35 years with the nonprofit marketing organization.

Moffitt, currently the president and CEO, will relinquish day-to-day duties on July 1 then continue working part time as a mentor and trainer until the end of the 2024–25 season, according to a news release from the organization, headquartered in Milwaukie, Oregon.

Moffitt also will leave his role as manager of the Fresh Pear Committee of the U.S. Department of Agriculture federal marketing order No. 927, which allows Pear Bureau Northwest to collectively market fresh pears from Washington and Oregon. In the most recent grower referendum, held in 2023, 99 percent of voting producers favored continuing the marketing order.

Moffitt does not plan to retire but instead will work on projects with select clients, he said in a separate message to Good Fruit Grower. “Too long in the produce industry to get out completely, but staying flexible,” he said.

In his time at Pear Bureau Northwest, Moffitt spent 23 years as the president and CEO, according to the release. He started in 1989 as the director of international marketing, overseeing marketing programs in more than 30 countries. He also developed the pear industry’s first ripening guidelines and handling manual in 1999 and helped start a fresh pear conditioning program for shippers and retailers. Today, 58 retail banners in the U.S. and Canada carry conditioned pears, according to the release.

He also developed online shopping promotions as early as 2001, developed a wine, cheese and pear pairing wheel and petitioned Oregon to declare pears as the state fruit. He has served on numerous national and international industry boards.

“(Moffitt) has demonstrated a passion for creative marketing with a high level of execution,” Jordan Matson, chairman of Pear Bureau Northwest, said in the release. “He has been agile and open to change, ready to make bold moves and stay ahead of trends. We thank him for his decades of dedication and effective leadership as he moves into his next chapters in life.”

by Ross Courtney