NOW Foods founder and NOW Health Group Board Chair Elwood Richard announced that industry veteran Al Powers, CEO of NOW Health Group, will retire effective May 1, 2014. NOW Foods President Jim Emme will step into the NOW Health Group CEO position.
"Al has been an excellent and productive leader for NOW, and our entire industry, for 40 years," said Elwood. “He has been a fine example of our core values of care for our customers, our employees, our community, and our environment. Among his many accomplishments has been leading NOW to become the largest independent manufacturer of natural products in the U.S. health food store channel.”
For the last 40 years Al has been a pioneer in the natural products industry. Since joining NOW in 1974, he has been actively involved in health food retailing and defending the nutrition industry, growing the NOW brand, and working with industry trade associations. Al received the President's Award for Excellence in Exporting from President George W. Bush on behalf of NOW, was the recipient of Nutrition Business Journal's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010, and was recognized for his 20 years of work with Vitamin Angels in early March when NOW was acknowledged as one of their founding supporters.
Al will remain on several of the NOW board committees, including the Charitable Committee, which was founded through his leadership. Al will also continue to represent the company in the health industry and provide counsel to the NOW board and company leadership.
"I have been truly blessed to have been able to serve NOW and the natural products industry for so many years,” Al said. “We have a great team at NOW that I am confident will continue to propel the company forward under Jim’s leadership and fulfill NOW’s mission to provide value in products and services that empower people to lead healthier lives."
Jim Emme, president of NOW Foods, will be promoted to chief executive officer of NOW Health Group effective May 1. Jim has been with the company since 1995 and brings over 30 years of technical experience and leadership in the foods industry to the table. He has been a key player in NOW’s global expansion efforts, and instrumental in developing the operational resources and facilities in North America that support NOW’s ability to be a value brand, yet provide unparalleled quality. Jim is known as an industry advocate with a staunch commitment to the independent retailer.
“NOW‘s mission and achievements inspire people to commit their careers to this company, as Al has demonstrated,” said Jim. “I intend to continue creating an environment where it’s both rewarding and fulfilling to be part of the NOW team.”