Mike Pruitt has been appointed by Cobb-Vantress Inc. as General Manager - North America. In his new role, he will direct North American sales, technical service and production.
Widely respected throughout the U.S. broiler industry for over 30 years, Mike began servicing broiler farms in 1982 for Valmac which was later purchased by Tyson Foods in 1984. He held that position for eight years before taking the role as President of OK Farms in 1990.
In 1999, he went to work for ConAgra Poultry as Executive Vice President of Live Operations. After ConAgra was purchased by Pilgrim's Pride, he became Senior Vice President of Technical Services at Pilgrims in 2004. In 2007, he accepted a position at Foster Farms as Senior Vice President of live operations.
"I am excited to have Mike join us and extremely confident that his experience and leadership track record will be valuable to Cobb's continued growth and future expansion plans," said Stan Reid, Cobb Vice President of Sales and Marketing.
Mike Pruitt takes over the position most recently held by Dr. Aldo Rossi who has become World Director of Quality Assurance and Veterinary Services.
"We've been searching for a genuinely qualified candidate for over a year. Aldo's understanding of our business and Cobb's culture make him a natural fit for this position," said Randy Vardeman, Vice President of Production. "Dr. Rossi is uniquely qualified to head up this important business unit, as demonstrated by his background and extensive experience in the poultry industry. Aldo's leadership is crucial to guiding quality assurance programs and quality testing to ensure Cobb products are free from disease and that we have solid biosecurity programs in place. Rossi will oversee all regional QA departments across the world as well as animal welfare programs and initiatives.
Rossi began his career at Cargill in 1992, after receiving his doctorate degree in veterinary medicine from the University of California at Davis, focusing on poultry medicine. At Cargill, he worked in internal production for Sun Valley in the UK, and later in the U.S. as the staff veterinarian for North American poultry operations. He moved to Elanco in 1995 as a poultry technical consultant, and then in 1997 joined Simmons Foods as a company veterinarian, coordinating live production and plant operations.
Since joining Cobb in 2000, he has served in various capacities, initially as veterinarian for the World Technical Support Team. He was given responsibility for the U.S. sales group in 2003 leading the team to achieve continued growth. In 2005, he served as North American director of sales and technical service, covering the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Caribbean and Central America. For the past six years as General Manager for North America his responsibilities also included U.S. hatcheries, grandparent and great grandparent production.