SENPA, Inc. 727-846-0320 info@SENPA.org
Lester G Burks, CEO of Life Line Foods, LLC, has been active as an advocate for the natural products industry, staying abreast of laws and regulations affecting the industry and has worked to help form legislative opinion for DSHEA (Dietary Supplement and Health Education Act of 1994) and NOP (National Organic Program) for the USDA.
Lester believes that the Independent Natural Products Retailers are the backbone of the industry, and have the ability to disseminate and provide vital alternative healthcare information to their customers; therefore, he is a strong supporter in the industry for these Independent Natural Products Retailers.
He has spent his career in the Natural Products Industry, beginning by working alongside his parents in their health food bakery business, Life Line Foods, which produced bakery products under the brand name, Breads for Life. Lester purchased Life Line Foods in 1988 and developed the Breads for Life brand into the #1 Selling Sprouted Whole Grain Bread and produced the first frozen organic pizza distributed in Health Food Stores. Another first was the development of Liquid Dietary Supplements under the brand name Buried Treasure. This made Life Line Foods not only a health food manufacturer but also a producer of Nutriceuticals.
SENPA sponsors the popular SOHO EXPO, held the first weekend in December in Orlando, Florida, and SOHO Healthfest in Dallas, TX as well as two or three educational programs each year. Benefits offered to association members include, credit card processing program, free admittance for member retailers to attend the SOHO EXPO, timely and relevant fax updates, newsletters and much more.
Debra Short has 30 years in the Retail sector of the industry working in her family business in Oklahoma. She completed 14 years serving on the Southwest Region Board from 1999 – 2006 and served as President of the Natural Products Association from 2007 – 2009. She was awarded NPA Industry Champion Award in 2011.
She moved to Florida in 2014 and serves the SENPA membership as the Executive Director in the New Port Richey office.
I am passionately involved in the health food industry as an educator and business owner since 1992. I initially opened an 800 square foot supplement shop in Gastonia NC and quickly understood that supplements did not fully address the needs of my customers. After working with customers and listening to request from the community, I brought in organic foods and HBA to more adequately address healthy living which resulted in relocating Organic Marketplace to a 5000 sq ft location in 2003.
Initially serving on the board of SENPA inspired me to continue to be a part of the work we were accomplishing to advance independent natural products retailers in a market that was changing. I've always been a teacher and my love of education has guided my career path. It has taken me into teaching health and wellness, something that I feel extremely passionately about as I learn every day. My commitment to you as the current Director of Education is to continue the inspiring initiatives that our board has developed over the last 3 years. Through my direction along with my dedicated committee members, we have produced 12 Road Shows, our grass roots outreach, throughout the southeast empowering
Independent retailers with up to date product awareness, legislative awareness, and marketing tools that are crucial for competing in the competitive market we face. Nothing will ever replace the interaction of a knowledgeable staff member and their loyal customer. It is the role of Independent "Retailer. It is my heart to serve on this board and to continue the vision as well as develop and achieve the most valuable asset, personal knowledge, and integrity to the Natural Product industry.