WASHINGTON — The International Dairy Foods Association introduced Mia Mulrennan as its new chief people officer and member of the IDFA executive team.

In her new role with IDFA, Mulrennan will be responsible for advancing the organization’s people strategy and making sure IDFA’s internal human resources department operates at the highest level. She will report to Michael Dykes, president and chief executive officer.

In leading the association's people strategy platform, Mulrennan will oversee four programs: NextGen Leadership, Women in Dairy, HR Leaders in Dairy and the Dairy Diversity Coalition. She also will be in charge of the platform’s two main events, The Power of People conference and the IDFA Leadership Symposium. The programs and events are designed to give IDFA members knowledge and tools for success.

“The IDFA people strategy has become a core business function of our organization as we provide the leadership programming, resources and networking opportunities that empower dairy businesses to develop nimble and innovative leaders, attract top talent and build inclusive, supportive and productive workplaces,” Dykes said. “In order for our members to compete and thrive in tomorrow’s food and beverage landscape, we need to lead in this space. That’s why we’re excited to have Mia Mulrennan — a proven, experienced human resources leader and organizational expert — to take our people-focused programming to new heights.”

Before arriving at IDFA, Mulrennan’s jobs included duties related to talent and human resources, as an organizational psychologist, consultant and executive. In 2013 she became chief human resources officer for Sun Country Airlines. In her next executive role, she served as CHRO for Star Restaurant Group. Additionally, she has consulted with a number of IDFA members – both dairy processors and suppliers – through the years.

Mulrennan said the IDFA is positioned to empower the dairy industry to become “the most inclusive, supportive, and attractive industry for the workforce of the future.”

She added: “I’m looking forward to working with all the leaders who are already championing these efforts and bringing my unique experience and expertise to this industry. Together, we will share knowledge, tools and connections to the dairy industry so that it continues to grow and thrive into the future.”

The IDFA’s newest executive earned a doctorate in applied business psychology form the Minnesota School of Professional Psychology, and completed undergraduate work at Stony Brook University and the University of Minnesota.