WASHINGTON — The Women’s Meat Industry Network (WMIN) announced the first recipient of the Most Impactful Woman of the Year Award, Kate Rome, president of Rome Grinding Solutions.

As the awardee of the Most Impactful Woman of 2022, Rome was selected for her leadership and the promotion and development of women in the meat and poultry industry, the group said.

“As the president of Rome Grinding Solutions, Rome has completely changed the culture of the company during her tenure,” said Cara Godack, director of business development at Rome Grinding Solutions. “She has increased the number of female employees by 25% and has closed the wage gap for women employed by Rome. In addition … Rome has talked with other manufacturers and questioned them on diversity, which has prompted many to rethink hiring procedures.”

“I am grateful for the opportunity that I have been given to make a meaningful impact in the professional lives of women over the past six years,” Rome said. “It has honestly been the highlight of my career, and I will continue pushing forward to achieve equality for women in our industry.”

During the North American Meat Institute’s (NAMI) Protein PACT Summit of Oct. 12, WMIN recognized the top nominees for Impactful WMIN of the Year, which included:

  • Sharon Beals, chief food safety officer, CTI Foods
  • Dr. Sara Crawford, president, Sustainable Environmental Consultants
  • Darla Kiesel, co-owner, Dewig’s Meat
  • Barbara Masters, vice president of regulatory policy, food and agriculture, Tyson Foods
  • Casey Gallimore, director of regulatory policy, NAMI

Formed in January 2022, WMIN represents over 900 individuals in the meat and poultry industry.