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Debra Short has 30 years in the Retail sector of the industry working in her family business in Oklahoma. She completed 14 years serving on the Southwest Region Board from 1999 – 2006 and served as President of the Natural Products Association from 2007 – 2009. She was awarded NPA Industry Champion Award in 2011.
She moved to Florida in 2014 and serves the SENPA membership as the Executive Director in the New Port Richey office alongside her mentor and friend Carylene Walker.
Carylene began her background in the industry when her father opened his first store in Clearwater, Florida, in 1950. She continued in the industry by joining him in 1971 and eventually taking over the family business.
After serving as Secretary, trade show coordinator and then as Executive Director of SENPA since 1974, Carylene has returned to her first love, the SOHO EXPO, focusing on building the SOHO team to continue running the show from in house. She believes this will keep the continuity of quality service everyone has come to expect from the show.
The Natural Products Association is recognized for its strong, aggressive lobbying presence in Washington, D.C., where it serves as the industry watchdog on regulatory and legislative matters. SENPA watches over the local and state issues dealing with its members in the Southeast. Meet our current Board of Directors
SENPA sponsors the popular SOHO EXPO, held the first weekend in December in Orlando, Florida, as well as two or three educational programs each year. Benefits offered to association members include, credit card processing program, free admittance for member retailers to attend the SOHO EXPO, timely and relevant fax updates, newsletters and much more.
Michelle DuFresne began her career in the natural and specialty foods industry nearly 24 years ago with KeHE Distributors. Throughout her career, Michelle’s various roles in finance, accounting operations and sales have allowed her to interact on a regular basis with both natural food retailers and conventional grocers, gaining relevant knowledge and experience to serve the industry.
Michelle has served on the Southeast Natural Products Association Board for the last 5 years, 2 years as Treasurer and 1 year as President Elect. She is also an active member of the national organization, Network of Executive Women. Included in her quest of a balanced and healthy lifestyle is a love for cooking, fitness and golf.
Michelle is a graduate from the University of Florida with a B.S. in Accounting.