When Audrey Desnoyers first joined the produce industry, she was hired to drive a bright green Volkswagen Beetle around the eastern United States as part of a team that introduced consumers to a new brand of kiwifruit. Now, after nearly 15 years spent driving sales of Oppy products, she has been named as The Oppenheimer Group's new national business development manager.
"Audrey's passion for the business, aligned with her knowledgeable, creative, yet practical solutions for the retail community, have made her a top flight performer over many years," James Milne,director of marketing, said in a press release.
Ms. Desnoyers' produce career began with Zespri International as a leader and manager of the street team that launched the "Zespri" brand in 1998, and a year later gave consumers their first taste of gold kiwifruit. In 2000, she became an Oppy business development representative covering the Midwest, serving in an outside sales role that builds retail, wholesale and foodservice promotions. In 2004, Ms. Desnoyers continued in the same capacity in the Northwest, later adding Northern California to her region.
Through a series of territory changes and increased responsibility, Ms. Desnoyers has been a key touch point between Oppy and the top 50 U.S. retailers, and she has established herself as an effective leader within the company's sales and marketing group, Mr. Milne said.
In her new role, Ms. Desnoyers, who is based in Seattle, will oversee Oppy's promotional approach for key items, and provide guidance to the company's business development team, assuring its activities support the organization's broader sales and marketing strategy.
She will continue to serve accounts in the Northwest.
"This is a great opportunity to work more closely with our sales directors to help move the business forward," Ms. Desnoyers said. "It means a lot to me that I can continue taking care of the customers I've worked with over the years, while also contributing to our business in a new way."
Ms. Desnoyers assumed her new role in late October.