Jennifer Parkhill
Jennifer Parkhill

Next Big Thing, a growers’ cooperative that grows and markets managed varieties of apples, including SweeTango, recently announced that Jennifer Parkhill will lead the organization as executive director, according to a news release. Parkhill will be responsible for developing strategies to advance the cooperative’s mission and objectives, promoting the co-op brand and communicating progress to grower members. She will also oversee operations and finances.

“We are so excited to have Jennifer join the team to lead us as we grow the SweeTango brand and begin to advance the Kissabel brand of colored-fleshed apples,” said West Mathison, president of Stemilt, an NBT Cooperative member, and NBT board member, in the release. “Jennifer’s energy and deep experience in launching new products is a perfect skill-fit for us. The NBT Cooperative is nearly 10 years old with an innovative spirit.”

Parkhill joins NBT from US Foods, located in Rosemont, Illinois, where she served in a variety of marketing and category management positions over the past 19 years.

“I am excited to get started and dive deep into the operations of the NBT Cooperative,” she said. “I want to continue their great work as well as capitalize on the NBT structure while strengthening relationships and knowledge for all our grower partners. A foundation of continued sharing and partnership will set NBT Cooperative up for more success. This platform will help form the base to introduce additional innovative varieties in the coming years.”

NBT is a 47-member cooperative of family growers, spread from Nova Scotia to Washington state. For more information on SweeTango, visit

—by Jared Johnson