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President and CEO

James A. McCarthy

Prior to his appointment as NAMA’s president, Mr. McCarthy was the president of the Snack Food Association, where he served as the primary Washington representative for issues impacting the  $42 billion snack food industry, creating strategic responses to and successfully guiding company members through nearly twenty years of state and federal issues such as childhood obesity, trade restrictions, use of trans-fats, food safety, food stamps, hunger, proposed taxes on snack foods and a myriad of other issues of critical importance to the industry.

He provided strategic insight, counsel and direction on domestic and global trends that offered growth opportunities for the snack food industry and created a partnership with the Mexican, Canadian and European associations to expand members’ access and continue to press for growth into Asia.

Mr. McCarthy has also served as director, federal government affairs of the National Food Processors Association, where he led efforts to support and pass into law the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act of 1990. He guided the association’s congressional activities with regards to passage and enactment of this law, which was the most significant change in federal food law in over fifty years.

He was a senior associate at Alcalde and Fay, successfully lobbying Congress in support of special amendments to the Clean Air Act of 1990 on behalf of affected industry clients and negotiating with federal regulatory agencies, including the Internal Revenue Service and the Federal Maritime Commission.

Mr. McCarthy received his Juris Doctor degree from the Columbus School of Law, Catholic University of America, a Masters of Business Administration from American University and his Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Boston University.

He is a member of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Committee of 100, the Dean’s Advisory Committee on Public Affairs – George Washington University Graduate Program of Political Management, and the American Society for Association Executives. He was a program chair of The Food Group and served as the  chairman from 1997-1998. In 2000, he was named to the “Top 50 Most Influential Trade Association CEOs” by the Washington magazine.

Active in his community, McCarthy is a member of the Board of Directors of the Boys and Girls Club of the Greater Washington Area and a recipient of the National Service to Youth Award. He has served as the Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner of Georgetown in Washington, DC.

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