IRVINE, CALIF. – Golden State Foods (GSF) announced that Mark Wetterau, the company’s chairman and chief executive officer, died on May 8 due to ongoing health issues. 

The company said Wetterau died peacefully at home surrounded by his family.

Golden State Foods said that Mark’s brother, business partner and 25-year GSF Board Member Conrad Wetterau, would be appointed chairman of the board of directors at GSF.

Mike Waitukatis will remain in the role as vice chairman of the board. He also previously served as the company’s chief financial officer. 

“Mike and I are deeply dedicated to GSF’s continued, long-term success,” Conrad Wetterau said. “Despite the significant loss of my dear brother, best friend, and long-time GSF leader, Mark, we will continue to build on the incredible momentum of this thriving organization to best serve our valued customers at the highest levels throughout the world.” 

Conrad Wetterau and Mike Waitukaitis were both co-owners of Wetterau Associates, GSF’s parent company since 1998.

“GSF’s people, culture, and customers are second to none,” Waitukaitis said. “During this time of transition, Golden State Foods and our family of companies will continue to be led in the same Wetterau family spirit, guided by our foundational Creed and Values, and company goals and objectives. Mark’s legacy will continue to live on at GSF, as we, his dedicated business colleagues will forever remember him as a charismatic, energetic leader, who tirelessly inspired his fellow associates and teams to achieve more than they ever thought possible, to seek the ultimate success of all our stakeholders, as it states in our Creed.”

The company said Stephen Wetterau, Mark’s son, will continue to have a strong leadership role in the company. Stephen has worked at GSF for 14 years and serves as the vice president of logistics and quality custom distribution. Stephen has been elevated to the role of GSF board member, effective immediately, according to the company. 

“My dad always said that ‘our people are our greatest asset,’” Stephen said. “And it’s the partnership between our associates, our customers and other partners that will enable our mutual success. As we move forward, that partnership, along with our unique culture, will be our driving force as we continue on together to best serve each of our customers around the world.” 

Mark Wetterau’s obituary can be found here.