Charles L. Dodson
Class of 2014
Charles L. Dodson is a 35-year industry veteran, born in Columbus, KS, on October 21, 1945, to Elizabeth and William, and is nicknamed Chuck.
He grew up in Michigan, attended Frank Cody H.S. in Detroit and later Michigan State, where he earned a B.Sc. in Packaging Engineering and then an MBA from Wayne State.
In 1967 he married Sandra K. Savage at Our Lady of Sorrows in Farmington, MI, and the couple raised three children: Stephanie, Jennifer, and Kevin.
His first job in confectionery was with Sunmark Companies Inc., St. Louis, in 1984 where he worked in the New Product Development and Engineering Dept. By 1993, Chuck had become vice-president corporate market development, with his department generating up to 1,000 new product ideas a year. He then became vice-president market research for the Nestlé Sunmark Group, and in 1998 became vice-president marketing of the Nestlé Willy Wonka Candy Factory in Itasca, IL, where his implementation of the Wonka umbrella brand strategy boosted sales 48 percent during a three-year period. He was promoted to vice-president marketing services in 2001, before a final two-year stint as Nestlé USA’s international sales/marketing manager.
Forming his own consultancy company, Chuck worked a couple of years with Kraft Foods before joining flavor supplier A.M. Todd, of Kalamazoo, MI, in 2005. Director of global mint product management and strategy since 2012, he is now responsible for reporting flavor, product and market trends, along with managing new product development.
Chuck lists Hal Siegle, along with Candy Hall of Famers Jim Gagliarducci and Ed Ansel, and Larry Delicandro as career influencers, and says one of his most memorable moments was being asked to research the need for the NCA to have its own show, which has since evolved into the Sweets & Snacks Expo.
He says giving back is necessary to help the category grow and prosper, and his extensive volunteerism includes working on various NCA committees, the Kettle Committee, and supporting the AWMA on its Manufacturer/Supplier Committee, along with Boy Scouts of America leadership roles.
In eventual retirement, he wants to enjoy his family and continue contributing to the industry.