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AICC Spring Meeting Brings Strategic Alignment to Members

By AICC Staff

May 17, 2022


A panel dicussion moderated by AICC Associate Chair Joe Morelli of Huston Patterson and Lewisburg Printers was the highlight of the Associates’ Meeting. (Photos courtesy of AICC.)

The AICC Spring Meeting, April 6–8 at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort in Palm Desert, California, welcomed over 700 attendees to the desert for three days of general sessions, plant tours, workshops, and networking.

During the meeting, speakers addressed the state of the industry, what’s next, and strategies to increase profitability. Additionally, 208 members enjoyed the 8th Annual Independents’ Cup Charity Golf Tournament.

AICC Chair Gene Marino, executive vice president at Akers Packaging Service Group, opened the meeting with a focused session that offered information on the state of

containerboard, trucking, and transportation, and an economic and legislative outlook with industry speakers Gene Marks, CPA, author and columnist at Business Expert; Ryan Fox, corrugated market analyst at Green Markets, A Bloomberg Co.; and Avery Vise, vice president, trucking, at FTR.

Of the meeting, Marino remarks, “It is a privilege and an honor to represent this Association as Chair, and the turnout in Palm Springs is a testament to our industry. I sincerely hope that the attendees enjoyed the meeting as much as I did.”


AICC celebrated several member milestones during the 2022 Spring Meeting.

Over the three days, Sean McDermott, founder and certified EOS implementer at The Traction Group, offered a keynote presentation, Align Human Energy & Activity in Your Company, and two workshop sessions.

McDermott also joined a special networking Q&A session with AICC Emerging Leaders (ELs). They were able to ask him questions about strategic alignment and growing with a company.

“The energy at the Spring Meeting is everything we’ve been missing the past couple of years,” says Senior EL Delegate Cassi Malone, customer service manager at Corrugated Supplies Co. “It was wonderful to connect with our peers in person again and share insights into how we are all managing through the different obstacles we encounter. It’s been like The Hunger Games of packaging, so being able to connect with people going through the same thing and knowing you’re not alone is key. Plus, so far, we’ve lived to tell the tale and have a few laughs about it, which is the other key to keeping our sanity as we all continue to grow.”


Attendees enjoyed reconnecting with old friends and making new connections during numerous networking events.

Over two days, supplier innovations were shared to an engaged audience during workshop sessions. Presenting companies included Automated Conveyor Systems, Advantzware, AG Stacker, Barberan, Baumer hhs, Bobst, CST Systems, Domino North America, Digital Print Inc., Durst Group, EAM Mosca, EFI, Emmeci, eProductivity Software, Global Boxmachine, Highcon, Kolbus America, Motionalysis Inc., OMP, Pamarco, PARA, RapidBond, SUN Automation Group, and Valco Melton.


AICC Emerging Leaders were treated to a special session with keynote speaker Sean McDermott.

Attendees also heard an extended producer responsibility (EPR) legislation update from Terry Webber, vice president of industry affairs at the American Forest & Paper Association.

The closing keynote was an exciting account of being held hostage by pirates from Captain Richard Phillips, hero of the high seas and real-life inspiration for the movie Captain Phillips.

During the meeting, Greg Tucker, industry leader and Chair and CEO of Bay Cities, was inducted into the AICC Hall of Fame for his contributions to the industry.

Prior to the meeting, 10 sales professionals participated in a two-day Accelerate Sales Forum in which Mark Roberts, CEO of OTB Sales Solutions, ​helped attendees develop targeted conversations that lead to revenue, deliver sales results aligned with a buyer-centric approach, and learn to use application exercises to create fluency within sales teams.

Plant tours at Fruit Growers Supply and EnCorr Sheets LLC was time well spent for more than 100 attendees.

The meeting also recognized AICC member milestones.

“It felt like we were back to a ‘normal’ meeting after several years,” says AICC Vice Chair Jana Haris, CEO of Harris Packaging and American Carton Co. “The venue, the programming, and as always, the networking opportunities were all outstanding.

AICC’s “Recyclers” Cycling Team enjoyed a post-meeting outing Saturday, April 9, in Joshua Tree National Park, covering 40–60 miles through the Mojave Desert.

Videos of many of the sessions are available to attendees upon request. Photos from the meeting can be found on AICC’s Facebook page.

Meeting Sponsors

  • Poteet Printing Systems, a Flint Group Co.
  • HP
  • SUN Automation Group
  • EFI
  • Haire Group
  • Oklahoma Interpak
  • Flint Group
  • Kao Collins
  • Domino
  • Kolbus America
  • Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
  • Stafford Corrugated Products
  • Global Boxmachine
  • Huston Patterson/Lewisburg Printing Co.
  • Dusobox
  • Durst

Upcoming National Meetings

AICC/TAPPI Corrugated Week

September 19–21 | San Antonio, Texas

AICC 2023 Spring Meeting & 9th Annual Independents’ Cup Charity Golf Tournament

April 24–26, 2023 | Miami, Florida

AICC 2023 Annual Meeting

September 18–20, 2023 | Louisville, Kentucky

Learn more at

Golf Tournament Sponsors

  • Major Sponsor: Domtar Packaging
  • Schwarz Partners
  • Bobst
  • BHS Corrugated
  • Bradford Co.
  • Equipment Finance Corp.
  • WestRock
  • Fosber
  • BCM Inks
  • AG Stacker
  • Litho Press
  • Bay Cities
  • Huston Patterson/Lewisburg Printing Co.
  • Poteet Printing Systems, a Flint Group Co.
  • Flint Group
  • Kolbus America
  • Isowa
  • Akers Packaging Service Group
  • Alliance Machine
  • American Corrugated Machine
  • Blackhawk Corrugated
  • BW Papersystems
  • EMBA
  • EAM-Mosca
  • Haire Group
  • Jamestown Container
  • JB Machinery
  • Kao Collins
  • McLean Packaging
  • Metsä Group
  • Pamarco
  • Printron
  • Roosevelt Paper
  • Quantum Ink
  • StandFast Packaging Group
  • Standard Printing Co.
  • SUN Automation Group
  • Wasatch Container