Chobani names Michael Gonda corporate affairs SVP amid marcomms restructuring

The yogurt brand has also changed the role of CMO Peter McGuinness to chief marketing and commercial officer.

Michael Gonda
Michael Gonda

NORWICH, NY: Greek yogurt brand Chobani has named communications leader Michael Gonda to the newly created role of SVP of corporate affairs, a position on its leadership team.

Gonda is reporting to president and COO Tim Brown. In his previous role as VP of corporate communications and public affairs, Gonda reported to CMO Peter McGuinness, whose title has been changed to chief marketing and commercial officer. The role of Dr. Robert Post, who leads nutrition comms, has been moved under corporate affairs.

Gonda will be responsible for external, internal, and executive comms. His newly expanded role includes centralizing sustainability, government relations, and nutrition communications.

Chobani reorganized the roles to "become an even more connected company and ensure stakeholder management is executed in the most aligned and effective way," Brown said in a statement. He credited Gonda with leading a "dramatic transformation of our communications function, telling our story through authentic campaigns and programs that further define who we are and what we stand for."

Chobani expanded Gonda’s role to include public affairs last August. He joined the company from Weber Shandwick, where he was a VP, in September 2014.

Chobani is planning to hire two executives for the corporate affairs team: one for internal communications and community impact and a government relations director. The company is also planning to expand its external communications capabilities, building that group in the coming months. Blair Aires, director of external communications, is the only staffer in that function.

Chobani named Edelman as its PR AOR in March. Gonda said there have been no changes to its relationship with Edelman as a result of the reorganization. The company previously worked with Weber and FleishmanHillard before that.

Chobani launched in 2007 in upstate New York, and has grown into a company with a reported more than $2 billion in annual sales and 2,000 employees.

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