Every year, there are member company representatives who are new to FEMA, the flavor industry, or both, who participate in FEMA meetings. Some individuals are inclined to quickly offer their time and abilities to further FEMA’s  Mission. This award is meant to recognize and celebrate new volunteers who have demonstrated leadership qualities of value to FEMA in a relatively short time.

The Emerging Leader Award is intended to be given to the most deserving candidate and will only be given in years with a worthy recipient.

The recipient will be honored at the Annual Leadership Conference (ALC) on April 29-May 1, 2024, in Isle of Palms, Charleston, SC.


Last Year's Honoree


Adam Gromer

Adam Gromer 

EHS Manager 
Synergy Flavors 

Adam Gromer has taken a leading role in driving the success of the OSHE committee. He has served as Subcommittee Chair for OSH under the Regulatory Affairs Committee, where his commitment to delivering on the subcommittee's objectives has fueled collaboration and project advancement. Adam has spearheaded the development of several initiatives including convening webinars to allow for workplace safety professionals within FEMA member companies to discuss COVID-19 related topics in addition to the “Understanding the IFRA/IOFI GHS Labeling Manual” webinar held last year.

Adam has been EHS Manager for Synergy Flavors for the last ten years, responsible for safety and environmental compliance across all U.S. locations. Previously, Adam managed quality assurance and safety compliance for a machine tool builder. He has a BA from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. At FEMA, Adam volunteered as a member and vice chair of the OSHE committee and has served as Subcommittee Chair for OSH under the Regulatory Affairs Committee. As a volunteer, Adam swiftly impacted the initiatives that drive the committee's success.


Past Award Winners

  • 2023: Adam Gromer, Synergy Flavors

  • 2022: Tanya Ditschun, Ph.D., Firmenich

  • 2021: Alex Brewer, McCormick & Company

  • 2020: Colleen Sabiel, Coca-Cola Company

  • 2019: Nicole Berzins, MycoTechnology, Inc.

  • 2018: Martin Ongteco, Robertet, Inc.

  • 2017: Jeff Peppet, Givaudan

  • 2016: Josh Vernoski, FONA International Inc.