NGA News

NGA Announces Staff Promotions

Jan 11, 2016

Arlington, VA – The National Grocers Association (NGA), the national trade association representing the independent supermarket industry, announced today the promotions of four of its staff.

Greg Ferrara has been named Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Public Affairs. Ferrara will continue in his role overseeing the government relations and communications and marketing departments as well as serving as NGA’s chief lobbyist. Having first joined NGA in November 2005, Greg brings a wealth of experience in the grocery industry having managed the operations for his family’s century-old supermarket in New Orleans before the store was ultimately destroyed in Hurricane Katrina. He has also worked as a corporate project manager for Associated Grocers in Baton Rouge, LA. Ferrara was recognized in 2015 as one of Association TRENDS Leading Lobbyists. He holds a B.A. in Political Science from Loyola University New Orleans and is a fellow of the prestigious Institute of Politics at Loyola University.

Matthew R. Ott, M.S., CAE, CMP has been named to Chief Operating Officer. During his time at NGA, Ott has overseen NGA’s membership, business development, partnership and technology initiatives. In addition to his current responsibilities, Ott will have an expanded role in NGA’s office operations and administration. Prior to joining NGA in 2011, Ott has held various management positions within the association and non-profit industries with a focus on increasing organizational growth opportunities. In 2013, Ott was named as one of six Association TRENDS Young and Aspiring Professionals and was named to Association Forum of Chicagoland and USAE’s list of the top 40 Under Forty, recognizing the top young talent in the association and non-profit industries. Ott has also been recently recognized by BIZNOW as a member of the 2016 Trending 40: Association and Non-Profit Innovators. He is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire (M.S.) and George Mason University (B.S.).

Maggie Lyons has been promoted to Senior Director of Government Relations. Lyons will take on an expanded role in managing NGA’s relationship with Congress and federal agencies to advance the organization’s legislative and regulatory priorities. She will also work more closely on supervising NGA’s Grocers PAC political giving and fundraising strategy. Lyons came to NGA in January of 2014 from Capitol Hill, where she served as deputy chief of staff for a senior member of the House Agriculture Committee. Prior to her time spent working in the U.S. House, Lyons worked for a Washington-based think tank, and served on the staff of a U.S. Senator. Lyons is a graduate of Elon University, with a Bachelor’s degree in Corporate Communications.

Laura Strange has been promoted to Senior Director of Communications and Marketing. She will continue in her role running NGA’s communications and media relations functions in addition to managing marketing for NGA events and programs. Strange joined NGA in the fall of 2013, coming from Capitol Hill where she served as communications director for a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and prior to that a member on the House Appropriations Committee. In addition to having professional experience on Capitol Hill, Strange worked in the government affairs department for Yahoo! Inc., and in the communications and marketing division for a trade association. She earned a Master’s degree in Public Relations from George Washington University, and her undergraduate degree in Communications from the University of South Carolina.

“Each of these individuals has extensive experience in their areas of expertise and provides NGA with immense knowledge that expands beyond the food industry. They are great assets to this organization and I look forward to working with each as they continue to grow in their roles and work towards NGA’s goal to strengthen the independent supermarket industry,” said Peter J. Larkin, NGA President and CEO.