Just Born CEO Ross Born to retire after 40 years at the helm

By Anthony Myers

- Last updated on GMT

Ross Born. Pic: Just Born
Ross Born. Pic: Just Born

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Ross Born, the CEO of family-owned Just Born confectionery company, has announced he plans to retire from his position at the Bethlehem, Pennsylvania based company.

Founded by his grandfather Sam Born in 1923, Just Born is known in the US as the manufacturer of iconic candy brands like Mike and Ike, Hot Tamales and Peeps.

Born has led the company for over four decades, along with his cousin and co-owner David Shaffer, and said he will work with the board of directors, which has established a search committee to recruit a new CEO. 

David Yale will remain in his role as Just Born President & COO, and Shaffer will continue to serve as Chairman of the Board.

This is my 44th year in the family business​,” Born said. “Thanks to our Just Born associates, our brokers, customers, suppliers and community partners, it has been the experience of a lifetime. I have enjoyed the close relationship I have had with David Shaffer, my cousin and business partner for my entire professional career.  Now it’s time for me to pass the baton to a new CEO, who along with our top-notch Executive Team, will take the business to new heights​.”

Born  was inducted into the National Confectionery Sales Association’s Candy Hall of Fame and served as Chairman of the National Confectioner’s Association.

Shaffer said: “There are not enough words to describe the innumerable contributions that Ross has made to our company, the confections industry, our stakeholders and our community. While his leadership and passion will be missed, he is leaving Just Born in a strong competitive position as we are coming off a record setting year—achieved despite the challenges of the ongoing pandemic.​”

Just Born is currently ranked as the tenth largest confectionery company in the United States.

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