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Histoire de l'entreprise Vitamix

A Letter from our President & CEO

Jodi Berg, Ph.D

Jodi Berg, Ph.D

When I was asked to become the president of Vitamix in 2009, the company was already recognized as the market leader in blending technology. I realized that I was not just accepting a new position, but agreeing to steward a legacy. It is incredibly humbling to know that the successes we experience today have been made possible by the foundational leadership, passion, and commitment of the generations before us.

I wish I could give you a personal tour through the halls of our company, show you the family photos that hang here, and let you touch the logs of the home and office that my grandfather built by hand in the 1940s while keeping his business afloat, supporting the war effort, and raising a family. Some of my fondest memories took place inside these walls, including family reunions and listening in fascination as my grandfather would talk to customers on the phone, helping them knead bread dough in their Vitamix machines, which was very popular at that time.

Our customers are still the center of our world. As the fourth-generation president and CEO of Vitamix, our history is very personal to me, as it is for the hundreds of employees who design, perfect, and build our world-class blending equipment. Join me as we walk through this almost century-long, true American success story.

Notre histoire commence en 1921. Mon arrière grand-père, comme bien d'autres, doit à l'époque composer avec une conjoncture économique défavorable, qui annonce la Grande Dépression. William Grover Barnard, affectueusement surnommé « Papa » par nous tous, commence à sillonner le pays pour vendre des produits de cuisine modernes. C'est en aidant un ami dans la maladie qu'il prend conscience de l'importance d'une alimentation saine pour la santé et le bien-être. Papa change le nom de sa compagnie pour The Natural Food Institute et devient un pionnier de l'industrie de l'alimentation saine ; il étudie et transmet tout ce qu'il sait de l'alimentation et la santé. En 1937, Papa découvre un nouveau produit : le blender. Il voit immédiatement le potentiel de ce mode de préparation ; le blender permet de préparer rapidement et facilement des plats sains et délicieux. Il décide de se consacrer à la vente de ce nouveau produit, que mon autre arrière grand-père a nommé le « Vita-Mix », puisque vita signifie vie.

Papa Barnard

Papa Barnard

In 1949, my grandfather, Bill Barnard, convinced Papa to take his live demonstration to the newest form of advertising, the television set. Papa overcame his doubts that the TV was a welcome addition to the family and went down in history as the creator of the nation’s first infomercial. Grandpa inherited the business a few years later in 1955, officially changing its name to Vita-Mix Corporation in 1964 when his son, Grover, joined the company.

Knowing the benefits of whole foods, Grandpa was determined to make healthy food preparation even easier and more delicious. The Vitamix became more powerful and versatile, setting it apart from any other product on the market. In 1969, he introduced the Vitamix 3600, the first blender that could make hot soup, blend ice cream, grind grain, and knead bread dough. My grandmother created hundreds of recipes for healthy alternatives to the foods we loved.

Thirty years later, my father, John Barnard, and his brother used their engineering backgrounds to make significant improvements to the performance and durability of the Vitamix product line—further developing the technology that allows families to pass their cherished Vitamix machines from one generation to another. In 1985, they developed the first Vitamix commercial blender, the Mix’n Machine. My dad’s vision then established us as the first high-performance blender in the food service industry—where our quality, performance, and value continue to set the bar. Today, a full line of commercial Vitamix machines can be found in gourmet restaurants and leading chains around the world.

Some of the lessons we learned along the way are still with us today. We continue to persevere to create the highest- quality product through customer input and advanced technology. We are steadfast in creating a better future through family values and healthy, delicious food. And we are committed to liberating and nourishing the zest for life.

What Papa Barnard realized decades ago is now common knowledge: The world can be a healthier and better place through whole-food nutrition. It is not just our torch, it is a passion held by many. Please join us in changing the way the world thinks about food, quality products, and customer service. We can make a bigger difference together. You, too, can be a part of our story.

À votre santé et à votre vitalité,

Jodi Berg
President & CEO

Dr. Jodi L. Berg - Biography

Dr. Berg is fourth-generation president and chief executive officer (CEO) of Vitamix, a 99-year-young, family-owned, mid-market manufacturer of high-performance blending equipment for the consumer and food service commercial markets.

She joined Vitamix in 1997 with the directive to lead the company’s overseas expansion. At the time, Vitamix had a presence in a few countries. Under her leadership, Vitamix products now are available in more than 130 countries around the world. She established Vitamix as the world leader in high-performance blending and led the company to organic growth of more than 400%. She was named executive vice president (in 2007), then president (2009) and CEO (2011).

Dr. Berg transformed the organizational structure of the company and its corporate purpose, mission and culture. Additionally, she expanded distribution, defined and elevated the status of the brand, and continues to provide oversight and strategic focus for the company’s future. She created a sustainable business model that enables Vitamix to nourish the zest for life by igniting the personal passion of each employee and customer. She continues to lead the organization, holding strong to the passion, integrity and family values on which the company was founded.

Dr. Berg received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (concentration in Hospitality Management) from Bowling Green State University (Bowling Green, OH) and a Master of Business Administration (concentration in Service Management and Service Marketing) from Washington State University (Pullman, WA).

Dr. Berg’s research on purpose and employee engagement has been published, and in 2016 it earned her a Ph.D. in management from Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management.

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Publications

Recent Media and Podcasts

Awards and Recognition

  • EY Entrepreneur of the Year
  • NEO Business Hall of Fame
  • NorthCoast 99 - Best Places for Top Talent
  • Smart Business Smart Culture Award
  • Cleveland Magazine Community Leader
  • Crain's Cleveland Business Women of Note
  • Better Business Bureau Champion of Integrity Award
  • Most Liked CEO in Cleveland, Owler
  • Jerry Noyce Executive Health Champion Award
  • Smart Business Family Business Achievement Award
  • Crain's Cleveland Business 150 Names to Know in Northeat Ohio

Organizations and Leadership

  • Barnard Investment Company, Board Member (1989–1995), President (1995)
  • David L. Cooperrider Center for Appreciative Inquiry
  • Cleveland Play House
  • Greater Cleveland Partnership
  • Team Northeast Ohio (Team NEO), Board Chair
  • Vita-Mix Corporation
  • Fondation Vitamix
  • Vitamix Ownership Interest Council (VOICe)
  • Young Presidents Organization, Gold

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