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A Year of Memories and More

By Jana Harris

September 13, 2023

Wow, how a year can fly by! It seems like yesterday that Gene Marino passed me the gavel in San Antonio. It has been such an honor to be AICC’s chairwoman. My husband, Zachary, and I enjoyed the opportunity to travel on behalf of AICC and see what many of you are up to in your regions. We made our fair share of trips and made some new friends along the way. We had a lot of fun and got some work done. Our experiences and trips were all memorable, but here are some of the highlights.

The first trip as chair was to speak at the AICC México Annual Meeting and Trade Fair in Guadalajara. It was a great time and turnout. If you have not attended an AICC México meeting, I highly recommend it, and if you do not speak Spanish, they have translators.

Next up, we took a trip to South Carolina for the first fundraising event for the Foundation for Packaging Education. It was a wonderful time networking and getting a little golf in when the weather permitted. The foundation was established a few years back by AICC, and its mission is to fund the continuation of ongoing education for individuals employed in our industry. The foundation’s next fundraiser will be in July 2024 in Napa, California, so make sure you join us.

Another memorable event was in December. Zachary and I made it to the annual International Corrugated Packaging Foundation (ICPF) Holiday Weekend in New York City. ICPF welcomed its new president, Caitlin Salaverria, and I am so excited about the direction she will be taking this foundation. She and the ICPF board are committed to investing more heavily in education and focusing on two-year colleges, trade schools, high schools, and even middle schools. You can learn more about this effort at I am excited to say that AICC, ICPF, and the Foundation for Packaging Education are more synergized now than ever, and I see good things ahead with packaging education. Better Minds, Better Boxes!

AICC’s Spring Meeting in Miami also made the cut. We had an outstanding turnout at Trump Doral and raised money for the Foundation for Packaging Education at the 9th Annual Independents’ Cup Charity Golf Tournament. What a successful meeting!

Last but not least, I made it to Colorado Springs for the Emerging Leaders (ELs) First Vice Chair Workshop. I am so proud of these young adults and how eager they are to learn from us and each other. If you have any young talent whom you see being a future leader, consider enrolling them in this program. We have three ELs from our company who are active, and they love it.

So, after an amazing whirlwind year, I say thank you for allowing me to represent AICC, thank you to the staff for making it easy, and thank you for the memories! I now have the pleasure of turning over the chairmanship to the very capable Matt Davis of Packaging Express. Congratulations, Matt!


Jana Harris
CEO and Co-owner, Harris Packaging and American Carton Co.
AICC Chairwoman