Leadership2

Our Leadership Team

Mecca Smith

VP Innovation

mecca@ilevelbrands.com

MMecca is a magician. She got her schooling at Hogwarts academy. She got a dual degree in spells and spreadsheet pivot tables.

Ginger Molthen

Ginger Molthen@gmail.com

JR has been performing successful buyouts for nearly 20 years, as both an executive and an investor.

While still in his twenties, he led the buy-out of a group of East Coast wholesale, retail and real estate companies. Over 10 years, he grew the companies to over $80 million in revenue and 300 employees and successfully exited through a strategic sale.

Ginger Molthen

Ginger Molthen@gmail.com

JR has been performing successful buyouts for nearly 20 years, as both an executive and an investor.

While still in his twenties, he led the buy-out of a group of East Coast wholesale, retail and real estate companies. Over 10 years, he grew the companies to over $80 million in revenue and 300 employees and successfully exited through a strategic sale.

Ginger brings over 15 years of experience in the natural products industry in her role as Chief Operating Officer and a founder of iLevel Brands. 

Her introduction to the natural foods business started in 2005 when she and her husband Tom started a food company, Pepper Dog Salsa.  They grew that business to over 700 stores and gained much experience from the manufacturer perspective.  This experience led her to venture out into contract sales management for companies at various stages of growth by managing broker network, working with distributors, and conducting sales calls with national retail buyers.

In 2014, she joined David as a founder of iLevel Brands.  On a personal note, one of the driving forces in building the current brokerage was “to create the broker I wished I had had as a manufacturer.”  Her experience in managing distributors and calling on the various sales channels has provided a foundation for the growth of iLevel Brands.  She helped to develop the national sales team and was the VP, Sales until 2019 when she moved into her current role as COO. 

 

Ginger provides “air traffic control” for the company by overseeing the operations of the company and ensuring that our clients receive best in class representation.

David has over 20 years of startup and brand building experience having founded and successfully grown his own natural food company, Kalahari Limited, as well as consulted for dozens of other emerging companies in the natural/organic food sector.

At Kalahari, he managed an extensive broker network to grow the newly created Red Tea category into 8,500 stores nationwide within 18 months. This explosive growth required an extensive marketing campaign and required Kalahari to raise millions of dollars in investment capital to fund it.

Post Kalahari, David founded iLevel Brands with the goal of helping other emerging companies successfully navigate the obstacles within the natural trade.  Working in a Sales Management/Startup consulting role with companies like Arctic Zero, Attitude by BioSpectra, Go Raw, GlutenFreeda, Qbel Foods and many more, he has become adept at helping emerging brands to create and manage go-to-market strategies that greatly increase the likelihood that a client’s revenue stream will reach a sustainable and predictable level. He has become extremely proficient at optimizing staffing and financial resources for brands experiencing exponential growth as they penetrate incremental business channels and multiple classes of trade.

For several years, he supplemented his extensive brand building experience by working for a regional brokerage company on the east coast. As the Supermarket Business Manager he represented many successful brands including Coconut Bliss, Rhythm Superfoods, Sambazon, Lotus Rice, and Ito En calling on all the supermarkets in the east. He has developed extensive relationships with buyers working for large and small retailers as well as those working for distributors. His connections with distributor key account managers is extensive.

David holds an M.S. degree in Industrial Engineering from Georgia Tech.

Vince has over 30 year’s of successful industry experience in the natural foods channel. A guru of products/process development, strategic marketing/sales, and store operational execution, he offers significant expertise to any new product launch. Prior to iLevel Brands, Vince spent 30 years working for Whole Foods Market in a variety of roles.

In his most recent role as Grocery Coordinator for the Whole Foods South Region, Vince lead the Grocery, Dairy, Frozen and Bulk Foods teams. He helped to build and maintain all planograms, hire and mentor grocery leadership as well as help with the build and redesign of new and current stores in the SO region. On his watch, the SO region opened 25 new stores in GA, NC, SC, AL, TN and MS. As Grocery Coordinator, he won 8 All*Star awards for best programs in the SO region. This included a Global All*Star award for the best Grocery Program in the company.

Prior to this, Vince worked as the Associate Grocery Coordinator for the SW Whole Foods Region. Here he worked with regional and local store buying teams to create best practices on product mix, retail pricing and off shelf programs including promotional pricing to increase store sales and profitability. He worked with vendors and brokers to optimize the success of product launches and promotional plans throughout the SW Region. As usual, he was also the recipient of multiple John Mackey All*Star awards while in the SW.

Vince worked his way up the ladder in his early years in the SW region. He started out as a grocery team member but quickly moved up to be a store level Frozen Buyer and then Grocery Buyer. He was soon promoted to Grocery Team Leader then Associate Store Team Leader.

Coming Soon

Over 30 years of CPG Experience with focus on brand building, management and business development.

Established the first CPG business development consultancy on the www in 1995 (Fooddude.com)

Founded Beanitos®, bean-based snacks. Key management and development roles with Guiltless Gourmet®, RW Garcia, Jardine Foods, and a several others across many categories including frozen, refrigerated and shelf-stable foods and beverages in multiple channels such as grocery/supermarket, C-stores, mass/big box, club, travel, military and foodservice. Specialist in natural products.  Brand-focused with extensive Private Label experience.

Full responsibility for Product, Packaging, Positioning, Pricing and Promotion, with lead roles ensuring placement at retail and consumer acceptance (Place and People).

With iLevel Brands for 2+ years as Brand Manager and H-E-B Account Manager.

Married to Betina.  Retired sportscar racing team owner with three national championships as driver. Current SCCA Race Steward, Race Administrator, Chief of Race Control, Pit and Grid Chief. Part-time hobby employment at Circuit of the Americas. Enjoys auto racing, classic cars and sailing. Rescue schnauzer dad.

 

Shawn brings us more than 22 years of experience in the Grocery Industry. He has worked as a buyer/category manager for SUPERVALU, C&S and others. The last 8 years he worked with Presence Marketing, most recently as Sr. Account Executive for Florida Conventional HQ accounts. Shawn has called on many  retailers in the East (and C&S), always growing sales, highlighted by doubling Ahold USA’s business and quadrupling Publix business.

Mark Noble

Ginger Molthen@gmail.com

Mark Noble comes to us with extensive knowledge and experience of over 30 years in the CPG industry and specialty food arena. He’s worked with some of top companies in the country including Nabisco Brands, Soda Stream & Ann’s Cookies. Marks’ knowledge and experience has given him the opportunity to work with just about every retailer across the USA and Canada.
In his current roll as VP of Key Accounts West, at iLevel. Mark coordinates all our AZ accounts including Sprouts & Albertsonsall major West Coast accounts and oversaw all the national distributors including UNFI, Kehe, Teams and all our Key Account West Team. He has called on SuperValu & DPI. He has earned his stripes in the CPG arena and is a great asset to the iLevel team. His experience will undoubtedly bring us an expert to our team as our VP of Key Accounts West.
Mark resides in Apache Junction, Arizona with his wife Melody of 35 years and has 4 children and 1 grandson that keeps him busy. He also enjoys boating, golf, cooking, traveling, watching football and baseball and spending time with family & friends!

Barbara brings more than 25 years experience in the Supermarket/CPG industry as a buyer, category manager in  both brick and mortar as well as on-line retailers.   She worked for  Giant Landover/Ahold on their grocery, frozen and perishable teams  as well as a Sr Merchandising manager for Peapod by Giant.  She now manages the distributor and Key account team support group for Ilevel.

Updating this profile soon

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