Industry veteran Jeff Gargiulo has been elected to the Lipman board of directors.

Jeff Gargiulo joins Lipman boardOn June 24, the former head of Sunkist Growers Inc., and co-owner of Gargiulo Inc., in Naples, Fla., joined the Immokalee, Fla.-based grower-shipper’s board.

A past chairman of the Produce Marketing Association in Newark, Del., Gargiulo was president and chief executive officer of Sherman Oaks, Calif.-based Sunkist for five years after he and his family sold the Gargiulo operation to Joseph Procacci, owner of Procacci Bros. Sales Corp., Philadelphia.

“I am excited to join the Lipman family and management team and get back into the tomato business,” Gargiulo said. “They are a very dynamic organization in an industry which is near and dear to my heart. As a board member, I look forward to contributing to their continued success.”

Kent Shoemaker, Lipman’s CEO, lauded Gargiulo’s addition.

“Jeff grew up growing and packing tomatoes, surrounded by Florida agriculture”, Shoemaker said in a news release. “We’re thrilled to have him join our board of directors and look forward to his insight as he returns to the tomato business.”

Gargiulo owns and operates Gargiulo Vineyards, Napa, Calif., and is the chairman of wholesaler Greenleaf Produce/ Greenleaf in San Francisco.

For two decades, the Gargiulos owned the tomato growing and packing operation that still bears the Gargiulo name.

A Florida State University graduate, Gargiulo is a member of the Florida Council of 100, a group of business leaders that advises Florida’s governor on business issues,

He’s also a member of the Oakville Wine Growers board of directors.