Lorraine Berton has been elected to lead ANFAO, the National Association of Optical Goods Manufacturers. The new President, the first woman in this position who will be leading the Association for the next four years, succeeds Giovanni Vitaloni, President from 2017.
The appointment was made at the end-of-year Meeting, in the splendid setting of the Scuola Grande della Misericordia in Venice.
The new Board, composed of Vice Presidents Sabrina Paulon and Massimo Barberis, from this year President of the ANFAO Lens Group, Davide Degl’Incerti Tocci, President of the ANFAO Youth Group, Nicola Belli and Michele Gasparini, was also appointed. Attending by entitlement was the Past President.
The Board will be joined by other delegates for specific activities: Enrico Tormen, Renato Sopracolle, and Paolo Pettazzoni have been confirmed on the Technical Commission, Eurom1, and Sight Protection Commission, respectively.
Lorraine Berton, former ANFAO Vice President in charge of Industrial Relations, has extensive experience in the sector. A businesswoman, she is the owner, with her sister Elena, of the company ARLECCHINO SRL, which has been producing glasses for 35 years, and of TWO B SRL.
She also has experience in Confindustria, where she is currently the President of Confindustria Belluno Dolomiti.
Also President of the Ente Bilaterale Occhialeria and the ANFAO Trade Union Commission, she decided to offer her expertise to the Association out of a spirit of service and awareness that she can do an important job.
“Transparency, involvement, innovation, and quality are the key values of the presidents who preceded me and they have been part of my experience in Confindustria since the start. My mission,” said the newly-elected President of ANFAO, “is to continue along this path of excellence, reinforcing these concepts and adapting them to the challenges that our industry and the world in general have and will place before us over the next four years.
The program of the team I will be leading is the result of an in-depth analysis of what we have experienced and faced in the recent past.” She then added: “we have learned that the market pace is no longer the only element to be considered; we have to deal with the ‘stability of uncertainty’ and recognize the increasingly evident connection between the environment, economy, politics and society. In this context, we must seriously engage in a steady transition towards sustainable development”.
As regards the program presented, a number of main directions were identified that will define the strategy of the ANFAO 2023-2027 Board.
These will mainly focus on valorizing manufacturing and Made in Italy as well as the Association as a whole. A strong commitment will be made to consolidating Industrial Relations, with a particular focus on training.
National and international Institutional Relations will be strengthened, and the focus will be on monitoring the domestic market and strengthening our connections with distribution and the medical profession. Monitoring standardization and certification and incrementing market analysis and internationalization will be equally important. It will also be crucial to attract young entrepreneurs and to work with a view to innovation and digitalization.
Special attention will be paid to sustainability, assisting firms, and adopting an industrial policy in terms of ESG.
“The greater focus on sustainability, in which ANFAO is currently investing a great deal, and will continue to do so” explained Lorraine Berton, “will further strengthen the Made in Italy eyewear industry, through the greater environmental and social sustainability ensured as a brand”.
The program guidelines were directly addressed through operating powers granted to the Board team.
Giovanni Vitaloni, Past President of ANFAO, who will continue to be responsible for the Association’s commercial operations (MIDO and DaTE as President of IES SRL and DaTE SRL), emphasized the importance of this transition: “First of all, I would like to say that I am very happy that for the first time, there is a woman President of ANFAO and in particular that this woman is Lorraine Berton. I am very grateful to her for these years in which, as Vice President, she has been one of the figures I have been able to count on most in terms of determination, experience, team spirit, and initiative. I believe that for ANFAO and for the entire Association she is a truly valuable resource as President today, as the high level of the team she has formed clearly demonstrates”.
ANFAO’s new President, Lorraine Berton, finished by saying “I myself, as ANFAO President, will be making a cross-cutting commitment with the team and a strong commitment in the territory by continuing as President of Confindustria Belluno, dealing with the renewal of the National Labour Contract as President of the Trade Union Commission and EBO, and above all monitoring institutional relations, the key factor for promoting our association and our industry in Italy and throughout the world.”
The first important appointments that President Berton and her team will be engaged in will be the training program for managers of member companies as part of the Empowering Optical Woman Leadership project to be launched in December, finalization and launching of the CSE Certified Sustainable Eyewear certification, and, of course, MIDO at the Fiera Milano-Rho pavilions.
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