Rich Reinwald, CMB, owner and co-founder of Reinwald's Bakery in Huntington, N.Y., was appointed president of the Retail Bakers of America (RBA) at a special installation banquet at the Johnson & Wales University Culinary Arts Museum, in Providence, R.I. last month.
The installation was combined with the opening of RBA's Special Collection Library, which consists of more than 500 books and 300 periodicals on the baking industry, now on permanent loan to the museum. Members of the New York State Association of Manufacturing Retail Bakers (NYSAMRB) attended the installation in addition to a special workshop presented by Chef Ciril Hitz at Johnson & Wales on whole grain baking.
Reinwald opened Reinwald's Bakery in 1988 and is a third generation retail bakery owner. He works in the bakery with his wife of 30 years, Carole. Reinwald has long been active in the baking community through his volunteer service for RBA and NYSAMRB. He has served on RBA's executive committee since 2004, and the board of directors since 1994. He also served as a judge for the VICA Commercial Baking Competition sponsored by RBA, passing his passion for baking on to younger generations.
In other RBA news, the association announced that Joe Gibbs will be its general session speaker for the 2009 American Retail Bakery Exposition (ARBE) to be held Oct. 18-20 in Charlotte, N.C. Famed NFL coach of the Washington Redskins, Gibbs will speak on perseverance, teamwork and excellence. RBA says the topic is particularly relevant to the retail baking industry as it has encountered many obstacles in the last year, including a sour economy that has forced some bakeries to close, explosive ingredient price increases, more competition from specialty shops and supermarket in-store bakeries, and generational “family owned and operated” bakeries losing ground as younger generations seek out new occupations outside the baking industry.
“Our industry is considered a tight fraternity of bakers,” Reinwald said. “We share ideas to help each other through difficult times. The challenges faced have been grave. It's time to stop the bleeding.”