Best of the Best: Growing, Transforming A Leadership Community

Above, from left: NEW Cincinnati Co-Chair Amy Eskoff Garrett (Procter & Gamble). Once Upon a Farm Brand Officer Jennifer Garner, NEW Cincinnati Co-Chair Jill McIntosh (The Kroger Co.) and Once Upon a Farm CEO John Foraker.


Now in its 11th year, Network of Executive Women (NEW) Cincinnati continues to foster a growing community of women in leadership.

The local non-profit organization – one of the almost two dozen regional NEW communities that comprise the national Network of Executive Women – welcomed 1,000 attendees to its sold-out May Learning and Networking Event featuring keynote speakers  Jennifer Garner, chief brand officer for Once Upon A Farm and a spokesperson for Save the Children, and John Foraker, CEO of Once Upon a Farm and founder of Annie’s Organics.

They each shared lessons learned along their entrepreneurial and professional journeys, and offered leadership executives snippets of the best advice they had ever been given: to always be themselves, to be purposeful, and always find ways to celebrate every day to keep themselves and their teams motivated.

“The Network of Executive Women’s reach is powerful. It’s a movement made up of men and women in our industry advocating for real change,” says Jill McIntosh, Vice President, Digital, The Kroger Co. “Inspiring leaders like John Foraker and Jennifer Garner are a part of this movement. They didn’t hesitate when I asked them to come to Cincinnati to share their story of co-founding Once Upon A Farm and their motivation to create a business that will drive social impact.”

NEW, which was launched nationally in 2001, focuses on gender equality, workforce transformation and  raising up women in leadership roles. Membership includes motivating webinars, access to an online community and research and insights on gender equality. But the biggest benefit for members is the people they meet and the professional support they receive, i.e., networking, reflected in both the organization’s name and platform.

NEW Cincinnati was established in 2008, founded on a partnership between Kroger and Procter & Gamble executives who believed it was crucial to further the advancement of women in the consumer packed goods (CPG) and retail industries. The need for groups like NEW to mentor and promote women’s advancement through providing a thriving community of support, training and development continues today.

Membership in NEW has grown exponentially since it began, reaching more than 12,000 consumer products and retail industry leaders and college students. At NEW Cincinnati’s 10th anniversary event last year featuring keynote speaker Dr. Condoleezza Rice, the 66th U.S. Secretary of State, the organization reached a record 1,000 male and female leaders in attendance. Speakers like Rice, Garner and Foraker are instrumental in regularly providing the top-notch leadership advice and inspiration executives can implement in their respective company workplaces.

NEW Cincinnati, one of 22 regions of the Network of Executive Women, has been recognized twice as the “BEST OF THE BEST” NEW Region nationally, and recently received “BEST OF THE BEST” awards for Best Sponsorship/Fundraising and Achievement Award for Programming/Events.

The more than 600 NEW Cincinnati members work at local companies including The Kroger Company, The J.M. Smucker Company, Xavier University, P&G, PepsiCo Inc.– Frito-Lay, Nestle USA, Seed Strategy, Inc., HEINEKEN USA, Council on Aging and Hormel Foods Corporation. Regional sponsors include 84.51, Graeter’s, Red Bull, Miller-Coors, Bacardi, and KIND.


For more information about NEW Cincinnati membership or sponsorship, visit