Picture of Larry Graham

Larry Graham

Class of 2013

Lawrence T. Graham, the second son of Helen and Edward, was born April 23, 1943, in Rockville Center, NY, the brother of Edward and, later, Kevin.

He graduated from St. Agnes Cathedral High School in 1961 and earned his B.A. in English in 1965 from Franklin & Marshall College, where he was captain of the football and baseball teams. Larry received his LL.B. from Boston University School of Law in 1970 and was admitted to the NY State Bar.

From 1966 through 1968, he was in South Vietnam with the U.S. Agency for International Development, working in refugee camps and rebuilding towns throughout Quang Tri Province.

He has been married 33 years to Karen McHale and they have three children: Lauren, Christopher and Maggie.

In 1970, he joined Wall Street law firm Beekman & Bogue, and two years later he became Chief of Staff to Clarence Brown (R-Ohio) in the U.S. House of Representatives, serving concurrently as Committee Counsel. In 1978, he was legal counsel for the American Hotel & Lodging Association. Larry then served from 1982 to 1990 as Executive Vice-President of the National Food Processors Association and as President of the Uniform & Textile Service Association from 1990 to 1992.

In 1992, he became President of the NCA. He explains:”Dick O’Connell, the retiring NCA President, talked to me about the industry. I knew it had to be a strong organization as it has been around since 1884, and candy is a great product to represent in Washington.”

After 21 years as President of the NCA — the longest tenure in the Association’s 129-year history — Larry counts among his accomplishments growing and strengthening the NCA, bringing the right staff together, and helping establish the World Cocoa Foundation. He says the most memorable moment of his career was witnessing the size, scope and excitement of the first Sweets & Snacks Expo in 1996.

In his leisure time, Larry cycles, golfs, sails and plays piano. He serves on the alumni board of Franklin & Marshall College, the board of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, the American Society of Association Executives board, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Committee of 100.

Larry retired from NCA in 2014.