Class of 2023
“Be someone that attracts others. Good people want to be around other good people.” This philosophy has served Mitchell Goetze since he started his career in the confectionery industry at just 12 years old. He explains that you do that by being humble, honest, hardworking and enjoyable to be around.
Mitchell was born on June 11, 1970, in Baltimore. Growing up he says his favorite memories are of the outdoor adventures he would go on with his mom Cynthia, his dad, 1998 Candy Hall of Fame inductee Spaulding, and his two brothers Spaulding Jr. and Todd.
He also attended many “candy shows” growing up and says those experiences exposed him to the energy and excitement of the industry and the strong and close relationships his parents had with other industry members. He adds: “And who didn’t love the trip through the sample room!”
With aspirations of working for the family business, Goetze’s Candy Co., Inc., Mitchell graduated from St. Paul’s School for Boys in 1989 and went on to receive a business management degree from New England College in 1993.
A year later Mitchell married Nell, and they have three children — Sadie, Ella and Cooper.
After graduation, he also made a serious attempt at earning a master’s degree but quickly realized that his “street MBA” could be found in the education earned working in the market and building relationships within the industry.
Mitchell joined the company full time in 1993 in the sales department managing brokers in the southeast region. He recalls that this experience was invaluable, and to this day he uses those foundations and lessons in his decision making.
As Mitchell’s career advanced, so did his involvement in the industry and his community. He has held many positions within the NCA, including board treasurer and chairman, which he considers one of the highlights of his career.
He has also spent time on the association’s Sweets & Snacks Expo, Public Policy and Advocacy Steering committees, and currently sits on its Vision 2025 Task Force.
Recognizing his commitment to the business, in 2017 Mitchell was presented with the NCA Silver Candy Dish and received the Kettle Award in 2018.
He has also been asked to speak on a variety of industry panels and has testified before Congress on small business matters.
In the local community, Mitchell has been a member of the Ducks Unlimited Wildlife Conservation President’s Council since 2020 and is involved with the Maryland Land Preservation Trust.
Outside of work, he enjoys “anything that involves a combustible engine.” He has ridden motorcycles across North America, and solo flown as a student pilot, hoping to earn his pilot’s license soon. He also spends time on the water in his grandfather’s restored boat.
Growing up, Mitchell was told by his grandfather, 1984 Candy Hall of Fame inductee Melvin Goetze Jr., that just because his last name was on the front of the building that didn’t make him an owner, he had to earn that right.
Today as CEO looks at his role in the business as being a steward, adding that as long as it is performing well it is his responsibility to continue its growth.
Mitchell acknowledges that being inducted into the Candy Hall of Fame is unique to him because he says that growing up in a family business, you never feel like you have reached the top, rather it is an endless journey with the top of the hill never quite in view. He says this honor gives him a sense that he has reached the highest level of the industry, a feeling that is both fulfilling and rewarding.