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Meet Camelle Kent of WellPet in Tewksbury

Today we’d like to introduce you to Camelle Kent.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I joined WellPet in October 2013 and have been involved in the pet industry for 4 years. It’s the best category in which I’ve ever worked, full of passionate people who are all committed to providing the best nutrition for our pets, who depend on us. It doesn’t get much better than that if you are a pet lover.

I started at WellPet as Vice President of Marketing with responsibilities across the brand, digital/social and innovation. After a year, I moved into a broader role as Chief Commercial Officer, which involved leading our sales team, marketing team and our research & development and quality teams. This was the time that I learned the most about our customers, including the independent retailer channel, which continues to thrive and is a vital part of our business. This experience revealed exactly how dynamic an industry we are all working in. Most recently in January, I took on the role of CEO when WellPet’s previous CEO, Tim Callahan, became the CEO of Berwind, the family company that owns WellPet.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Every journey has its opportunities and challenges. The pet food industry is growing. There are more pets and pet parents, and Millennials, in particular, are helping to fuel the growth of pet food and other pet products. The retail landscape has also changed—e-commerce has become a larger part of how pet parents buy food and products for their pets. Continuing to adapt to these changes—protecting our retail partners while developing innovative new recipes that appeal to the preferences of today’s pet parents—is something that keeps us as a company nimble and always moving forward.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
WellPet is the #1 independent, family-owned natural pet food company in the U.S. We’re also one of the forefathers in natural nutrition. We make food and treats for dogs and cats under the Wellness, Old Mother Hubbard, Holistic Select, Eagle Pack, Sojos and WHIMZEES brands. The team I work with at WellPet goes above and beyond every single day – they are hyper-focused on delivering the best nutrition at the highest quality possible for our pets, who count on us day in and day out. It’s amazingly refreshing to be amongst a group of people who are so focused on doing things the right way, which is not always the easy way. Our mission is to create healthier pets and happier pet parents. By putting better ingredients in your pet’s bowl each day we’re helping you help them feel their best, and that’s something we’re always proud to do.

During my first year as WellPet CEO, we’ve made community involvement a top priority for the company. WellPet has done this for a number of years through our WellPet Foundation, but my vision is to support our philanthropic roots in a more visible and vocal way so that when pet parents choose Wellness Natural Pet Food, they know they’re buying a brand that cares and supports pets in need. I am also focused on our company culture, ensuring our people have a great work-life balance and have the flexibility to give of their own time to community and pet welfare groups that are near and dear to our hearts.

This year, we launched WellPet’s inaugural annual volunteer day to get employees out into their community to live out the WellPet Foundation’s mission. Employees chose from a variety of local volunteer sites to help local pets in need, including the MSPCA at Nevins Farm and the Lowell Humane Society.

We also sprang into action with this same desire to help when recent hurricanes impacted millions of Americans and their pets across the country, sending nine of our employees to Houston to assist Best Friends Animal Rescue in relocating animals displaced by Hurricane Harvey. Through the WellPet Foundation, we also donated more than 100 pallets of food and $10,000 to help care for animals displaced by the storm.

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