WFFC & FEMA Spring Educational Seminar 2024: Emerging Corporate Culture Driven by Science & Well-Being

Together with Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association (FEMA), the WFFC presents this half-day educational and networking event.

Join us to hear important conversations on wellness in emerging corporate cultures, including the topics of work/life balance, understanding the key to self-confidence, panel discussions about successful organizational stewardship, and examining next-generation trends.

Suzanne C. Johnson
Ph. D. VP, R&D – Consumer, McCormick & Company
Topic: Release your inner power-understanding the key to self-confidence

Dr. Suzanne Johnson is currently leading Global R&D for McCormick and Company. She is responsible for providing strategic and operational leadership to the Global Research & Development function and heads McCormick’s Global R&D Leadership Team. Dr. Johnson holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Bradley University, a Masters and Ph.D. in Physical Analytical Chemistry from Northwestern University, and a certificate in Business Administration from the University of Illinois. Dr. Johnson is Past President of the Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association, currently serving as Board Advisor.

Patty Amarose
Senior Director Marketing & Consumer Insights North America, Firmenich
Topic: Consumer insights and Future Trends of Well-being in the Flavor & Fragrance Industry

Patty Amarose is a seasoned Marketing and Product Development leader who’s worked across multiple product categories and distribution channels. Today she leads the Marketing team at DSM-Firmenich in the North American Perfumery & Beauty division. She and her team are responsible for leading the development of strategic programs that unlock new business opportunities for DSM-Firmenich’s key clients by deeply understanding the consumer fragrances landscape. Prior to her role at DSM-Firmenich, she held various global marketing and product development roles at Avon, Tocca, Givaudan and IFF.

Danielle Barbaro
Vice President North America Beverages R&D, PepsiCo
Topic: Doing it all: The Pursuit of Work-Life Balance

Danielle Barbaro is the Vice President of PepsiCo’s North America Beverages R&D with over 20 years of experience. As the North American region lead, she serves as the primary point of contact, supporting in-market product and all innovation for North American business. PepsiCo’s largest region and innovation hub is North America, representing approximately one third of a $86 billion company (NR, 2022). Danielle leads R&D from insights to execution including Joint Venture partnerships with Starbucks & Unilever. Under her leadership, the R&D team has delivered numerous unparalleled consumer centric innovations namely: Starry, Pepsi Zero Sugar, Gatorade Zero, Gatorlyte, Pepsi Nitro, Starbucks Pink Drink, among others.

Danielle has challenged processes and consequently transformed R&D performance, by introducing new front-end activities from innovation sprints to consumer immersions. She has successfully collaborated with business partners to develop PepsiCo’s Annual Operating Plan (AOP) and Strategic Planning (PSP) process.

Danielle has been critical in developing new technology and capability building, ranging from functional ingredients to new manufacturing processes. She has delivered consumer centric, functional and patented claims which are scientifically supported, Danielle and her team have partnered with Operations to unlock capacity and execute design to value programs that have enabled multi-million dollar savings. Danielle has and continues to mentor PepsiCo colleagues at different stages of their career. She proudly supports Women’s forums and networks within PepsiCo.

Her passion to educate junior talent and champion STEM is evident through her partnership with multiple Universities, such as Rutgers. She also serves on the board of Bergen Tech High School for Culinology and collaborates with the NY Hall of Science to support their events and exhibits.

In 2021 Danielle was elected as a FEMA board member representing PepsiCo and focusing on Strategic Labeling and elevating awareness of  this organization. Danielle holds a double major in Nutrition Dietetics and Food Science from the University of Delaware, and a Masters in Food Science from Rutgers University.


Dr. Andrea Love and Dr. Jessica Steier
Unbiased Science Podcast Hosts
Topic: In the Name of Science: Promoting Science & Fact-driven Conversation in a New Media world

Dr. Jessica Steier is a public health scientist and health services researcher with expertise in health policy evaluation. She is the CEO of Vital Statistics Consulting, a data science consultancy, and founder and co-host of Unbiased Science, a science communication brand with over 450,000 followers around the world. She co-hosts the Unbiased Science Podcast which has been downloaded over 1 million times.

She previously served as a Senior Health Policy Consultant at The Lewin Group, working primarily on large state and federal health policy evaluations. Prior to that, she was the inaugural Research Coordinator of Hofstra University’s Department of Physician Assistant Studies, where she designed the Master’s degree curriculum, conducted research with clinicians and healthcare delivery organizations to inform evidence-based change and quality improvement, and performed program evaluations and needs assessments for hospitals and departments of health. She has consulted for the NYC and Nassau County Departments of Health.

Dr. Steier received her Master of Public Health (Evaluative Sciences) at SUNY-Stony Brook University and her Doctor of Public Health degree from the Graduate Center at the City University of New York (CUNY). She holds a Certificate in Patient Safety, as well as a Certificate in COVID-19 Contact Tracing from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. She is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP).

Dr. Steier is the recipient of the Stony Brook University “40 under 40” recognition, the “Norman Edelman Alumni Achievement Award” from Stony Brook Medicine, and the 2023 American Medical Writer’s Association McGovern Award Co-Recipient (alongside Dr. Andrea Love). Originally from Brooklyn, NY, Jessica currently lives in Western Massachusetts with her husband and two children. She is an avid animal lover and supporter of local rescue organizations and has adopted four dogs and two cats.

Dr. Andrea Love is an immunologist and microbiologist with over a decade of experience in basic sciences, translational medicine, and clinical research. Dr. Love is the founder and co-host of Unbiased Science, a science communication brand. She is a subject-matter expert in infectious disease immunology, cancer immunology, and autoimmunity and is adept at translating complex scientific data and topics for the public and healthcare providers.

She currently serves as Director of Cell Assay and Analysis Technologies at Revvity, a biotechnology company that develops tools to advance biomedical research in vaccinology, virology, immunology, immunotherapy, cell and gene therapy, therapeutic protein production, and more. She worked previously in academic research, focused on differential host-pathogen interactions of infectious diseases, and earned her Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD) in Microbiology and Immunology from New York Medical College.
In addition, Dr. Love serves as an Immunology Consultant for Vital Statistics Consulting (VSC), is a member of the POPSUGAR Condition Center Advisory Board, and is the Executive Director of the American Lyme Disease Foundation (ALDF). Dr. Love was the 2023 American Medical Writer’s Association McGovern Award Co-Recipient (alongside Dr. Jess Steier).

She also believes strongly in scientific literacy from an early age and is heavily involved with efforts to encourage children toward a career in STEM. A native of Eastern CT, she currently lives in the Philadelphia metro area with her partner and seven rescue cats. Outside of work, she is a marathoner and ultramarathoner, an avid yogi, and a black belt in judo.

Panel Discussion:
Industry Advocates: Association Engagement and Company Leaders

Laurette Rondenet
Owner & CEO, Edlong Flavor Solutions

Cynthia Tanner Reichard
Executive Vice President, Arylessence, Inc.

Erica Lermond
CEO, The Lermond Company

Adriana Becker
President, Capua 1880 USA Inc.

George Southworth
Executive Director, FEMA

Panel Discussion:
Next Generation Trends

Emily Torres
Market Coordinator, Berje

Amna Gaba
Flavor Lab Technician, Lucta

Rebecca Bissessar
Product & Fragrance Development (Fine Fragrance), Victoria’s Secret & Co.

Laure Moutet
Industry Expert


Thank you to our event Sponsors!

Date February 28, 2024

Time 8:30 am – 1:30 pm

LocationRenaissance Meadowlands Hotel
801 Rutherford Ave.
Rutherford, NJ 07070

ChapterNew Jersey

Admission Cost

Members & Subscribers $180
Non-Members & Guests $200
Sponsors $300