Post Archives

21st Annual “Friend of Chile” Awards Luncheon

Tuesday, September 25th, 2018

 21st Annual Friend of Chile Awards Luncheon

Friday, November 30th, 2018
The Union League of Philadelphia
140 South Broad Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Chilean Wine Tasting & Reception 11:30 am
Luncheon & Awards Celebration 12:00 Noon

Click here for sponsorship opportunities

The Honorable Jeffrey Bullock, Secretary of State of Delaware

Jeffrey W. Bullock was sworn in as Delaware’s 80th Secretary of State on January 21, 2009 and re-confirmed by the Delaware Senate on January 18, 2017. As Secretary of the most diverse department in state government, Bullock oversees nearly twenty different agencies including Corporations, Historical and Cultural Affairs, Arts, Libraries, Veterans Affairs, Professional Regulation, and Human Relations. In addition, Secretary Bullock has a number of constitutional responsibilities, including serving on the Board of Pardons. He is also the chairman of the Diamond State Port Corporation, which owns and operates the Port of Wilmington. Secretary Bullock is a native Delawarean who grew up in Claymont and holds a degree from the University of Delaware in Economics and Political Science. He lives in Wilmington with his wife, Susan Frank, and their two daughters, Kate and Caroline.

Paul Wigand, Director of Operations, William H. Kopke, Jr. Inc.

Paul Wigand has been working with the William H. Kopke Jr. Inc. company since February, 1977. For those forty years, he has witnessed the growth of the Chilean fruit industry. Throughout his career, his experience has been deeply rooted within the Greater Philadelphia Region. Beginning with his operational skills and expediting cargoes at Northern Metal Terminal in Philadelphia, he along with William H. Kopke Jr. Inc. continue to support the Delaware River ports. As Director of Operations, his responsibilities include open dialogue with fruit importers, exporters, and producers from around the world to explore trade possibilities. He continues to travel to the sourcing arenas for fresh imported fruits and produce.

Paul is married to his wife, Diane, for forty years and they have three children: Brien, Eric, and Allison. He is a volunteer and for the past twenty years sits on the Board of Directors of the Ocean Financial Federal Credit Union.

Dedication of the “Lifetime Achievement” Award to Albert S. Marulli:

Albert S. Marulli (1928-2018) is considered by many, to be the “father” of the Chilean fruit export industry.  He dedicated 68 of his years to establishing, nurturing and advocating for the industry – 34 years as part of USDA-APHIS, and 34 years as an independent consultant to Western Fumigation and their many import and export clients.  A quiet man, who eschewed any recognition for his extraordinary accomplishments, Albert was a fiery and persistent leader in tackling obstacles to trade and finding “win-win” solutions for the parties involved.

Naming the Lifetime Achievement Award for Albert S. Marulli is a fitting tribute to a humble and accomplished man who dedicated himself to Chile and achieved so much.

Click here to register

Please contact Christina Lista, CACC Executive Director, with any questions at [email protected]

Chile: Your next tech partner_

Thursday, May 31st, 2018


Join the founding members of Ch1l3 a digital country_ as they launch their final tour of the U.S. here in Philadelphia on the evening of June 18th. Representing the 7th ranked Digital Nation in the world* and the best country to do business with in Latin America**, network with leaders of Chile’s technology sector and learn how they’re pioneering Latin America’s connectivity and technology infrastructure. Registration is free.

Click here to register 

Monday, June 18th, 2018
5:00 – 7:00 p.m.

The Bourse Building, 9th Floor
111 S Independence Mall E
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Chilean IT Delegation:


*Source: Tholons Digital Nations Ranking

**Source: Forbes Best Countries for Business

Presenting Partners:


Summer 2018 International Business Networking Reception

Monday, May 14th, 2018


For the eighth consecutive year, members and friends of Philadelphia’s international chambers have joined forces to host an international business networking reception to celebrate Philadelphia’s status as a top U.S. destination for foreign direct investment and commercial trade.

On the evening of July 25th, join hundreds of your business peers to network together and reaffirm Philadelphia’s economic, political, and commercial impact as an influential global city.

Click here to become a sponsor

Summer 2018 International Business Networking Reception

Wednesday, July 25
5:00 – 7:00 pm

National Museum of American Jewish History
101 South Independence Mall East
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Member Individual Ticket – $55.00
Non-Member Individual Ticket – $75.00

Click here to register

Presented by:

Presented in Partnership with:

Corporate Sponsors:

13th Annual Experience the Taste of Chile

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2018

13th Annual Experience the Taste of Chile
Wine Tasting and Dinner
April 26, 2018
Hotel du Pont
Wilmington, DE

On Thursday April, 26th, The Chilean and American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia (CACC) held its 13th Annual Experience the Taste of Chile Wine Tasting and Dinner at the historic Hotel du Pont in Wilmington, Delaware.  The evening kicked off with a wine reception as attendees enjoyed tastings from a variety of Chilean wines on display.  Guests networked and enjoyed music before being led into the Gold Ballroom for the remainder of the evening.


Once attendees had taken their seats, CACC Board President Robert Palaima took the stage to recognize and offer congratulations to the Maritime Exchange for the Delaware River and Bay, the recipient of the 2018 Visionary Award for their work with the Ports of the Delaware Valley.

Palaima then thanked sponsors, special guests, and attendees that had travelled from far away to attend the night’s program. Among those in attendance were Presenting Partners of the evening, the founding members of Ch1l3 a Digital Country_ as well as the Chilean Delegation visiting from the VI Region (O’Higgins) in Chile, which included the 2014 Visionary Award Recipient Alejandro García Huidobro, Senator of the Republic of Chile.


Robert Palaima then handed the microphone to Anne Bookout of Royal Fumigation, one of the evening’s Presenting Sponsors.  Bookout expressed her delight in being a sponsor for the event and thanked the Chamber for its continued commitment to strengthening the relationship between Chile and the United States throughout all channels of commerce and communication.

Next to take the stage was Martin Lewit of Ki Teknology and Nisum Chile, a founding member of Ch1l3 a Digital Country_.  Lewit explained the importance of tech in Chile, noting Chile as the largest consumer of tech in Latin America.  He then spoke to the long history Chile has with the CACC and explained its important role in introducing his new technolgy brand to the United States. Lewit explained that it is this relationship, and events like the Taste of Chile, that motivated Ch1l3 a Digital Country_ to venture into Philadelphia as one of its top three destinations in the U.S. and made him so happy to once again be visiting from South America.


Before dinner was served, Robert Palaima invited Sebastian Goycoolea and Chris Fream of BluGlacier, one of the three largest importers of Chilean salmon to the U.S., to the stage to speak about their fresh Chilean salmon products and thanked them for their generous donation of salmon for all to enjoy.

Following dinner, Miriam Borja-Fisher of Western Fumigation and Treasurer of the CACC took the stage.  Borja-Fisher reminisced of her time spent in Chile this past September and once again welcomed the Chilean Delegation from the O’Higgin’s region before welcoming Chilean Senator  Alejandro García Huidobro to the stage.

After greeting those in attendance and thanking all for welcoming him back to the region, Senator García Huidobro spoke to the strong relationship his region has with Philadelphia.  García Huidobro emphasized that he feels like a part of the Chamber and expressed his gratitude for its role in strengthening international relations between the two regions.  Senator García Huidobro also called to attention the Chamber’s role in welcoming four Chilean students to the United States, which Board President Robert Palaima would later call one of the Chamber’s most rewarding efforts.


Following Senator García Huidobro, United States Senator Tom Carper spoke about Chile and its growing rank as one of the United States’ best friends and most valuable trading partners, stressing the importance in the continuation of this strong relationship.


Jeffrey Bullock, Secretary of State of Delaware, then took the stage to introduce the night’s honorees.  Bullock thanked Senator Carper, noting that there is no better supporter of the Maritime Industry.  Bullock congratulated the Maritime Exchange and explained that no candidate was a better fit to receive this award.  Through its advocacy and promotion of Delaware River Commerce and its support of the Chamber, the Maritime Exchange was the most worthy recipient for the award.  Bullock then invited Dennis Rochford, President of the Maritime Exchange and CACC Board Member, to the podium to accept the award for the Maritime Exchange for the Delaware River and Bay.


Rochford explained how honored he was to be receiving the award and thanked his board members and staff for their efforts within the organization.  By working with its partners in Chile, as well as local stakeholders of the Delaware River, the Maritime Exchange has undertaken several initiatives to protect and grow the perishable cargoes exported to the US from Chile.  Rochford noted some of the Maritime Exchange’s most recent accomplishments including its work in facilitating the creation of the Cold Storage Facility Task Force and the CBP – Agriculture Working Group. Before exiting the stage, Rochford once again thanked those in attendance and recognized the region’s congressional delegation for its interest and support of the Maritime Exchange in achieving its goals for the organization.


The CACCGP would like to thank all of the sponsors, presenting partners, special guests, and attendees of this esteemed event, and also to Presenting Partners ProChile DC for facilitating the donation of fresh Chilean Salmon for the evening.

13th Annual Experience the Taste of Chile

Wednesday, February 7th, 2018

Join the Chilean and American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia for its 13th Annual “Experience the Taste of Chile. Enjoy an evening of authentic Chilean food, wine, rich conversation and celebration of the strong commercial and trade partnership between the Delaware Valley and the Republic of Chile.

Take advantage of the opportunity to participate in this unique event and show your support for the work the Chamber does to continually strengthen the commercial and business ties between the Greater Philadelphia Region and Chile.

Thursday April 26, 2018
5:00 PM – Chilean Wine Tasting & Reception
6:00 PM – Dinner & Award Ceremony

Hotel du Pont
11th & Market Streets
Wilmington, DE 19899

Receiving the 2018 Visionary Award
The Maritime Exchange for the Delaware River and Bay

CACC Member Ticket: $150
CACC Non-Member Ticket: $200

Click here to register.

For additional sponsorship information, please contact Christina Lista at 215-790-3627 or [email protected].

Cheers to 30 Years – RESCHEDULED

Wednesday, February 7th, 2018

Cheers to 30 Years will be held at the grandiose Water Works, a National Historic Landmark with breathtaking views of Boat House Row and the Center City skyline from its waterfront location at the foot of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

The cocktail reception will include a 2 hour top-shelf open bar highlighted by Chilean wine and an abundance of passed hors d’oeuvres, a chilled seafood station, an antipasto station, and more.

Wednesday March 28, 2018
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM Cocktail Reception

Water Works Restaurant & Lounge
640 Water Works Dr.
Philadelphia, PA 19130

Sponsorship levels for this reception include:

Gold – $2,500
Includes 7 tickets (total) to the reception, premium signage throughout venue (logo and banners), toasting opportunity, and exclusive photo opportunities

Silver – $1,500
Includes 5 tickets (total) to the reception, signage throughout venue (banner), and exclusive photo opportunities

Bronze – $750
Includes 3 tickets (total) to the reception, signage (logo recognition), and exclusive photo opportunities

The CACC is tremendously appreciative of all levels of support given for this special cocktail reception.

This is an invitation-only event.

Sponsorships are still available and can be purchased by clicking here.

RSVP to [email protected] to register.

For more information, contact Christina Lista at 215-790-3627 or [email protected].

CACC Global Connect

Wednesday, January 3rd, 2018


Please join the Chilean & American Chamber of Commerce and Greater Philadelphia’s International Chambers at a tristate area event to connect with entrepreneurs, tech professionals, and global business leaders. Join internationally minded executives with operations in Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania for a dynamic evening of networking, refreshments, and professional growth.

Start-ups are welcome and encouraged to bring corporate promotional materials to display and showcase business objectives.

Bring plenty of business cards and let’s connect!

Thursday, January 25, 2018
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM

1313 Innovation Center
1313 North Market Street
Suite 110A
Wilmington, DE 19801

CACC Member Ticket: $35.00
CACC Non-Member Ticket: $45.00

Click here to register

2017 Annual Fresh Fruit Workshop

Wednesday, December 6th, 2017

The Chilean & American Chamber of Commerce
2017 Annual Fresh Fruit Workshop
Friday, December 1, 2017
The Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market

Colleagues, port representatives, and government officials joined together at the Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market (PWPM) to participate in an annual interactive experience reviewing the trade, technical, legal, regulatory and business issues affecting the import of Chilean fresh fruit into the Delaware River Region.

The workshop featured a panel of experts moderated by Tom Mastromarco of Holt Logistics Corp. and welcomed with remarks courtesy of Sean Mahoney of PhilaPort and Honorary Consulate of Chile, Benjamin Leavenworth.  This year’s panelists included: Felipe Gajardo, Agricultural Trade Specialist, Agricultural Office – Embassy of Chile; Stephen Brady, Chief Agricultural Specialist for the Port of Philadelphia, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Customs and Border Protection; William Spence, Officer in Charge, USDA Animal Plant Health Inspection Agency – Plant Protection & Quarantine; Marc Krasner,  Acting Asst. Officer in Charge, Philadelphia USDA – Agricultural Marketing Service Office; Russel Vandermark, FDA Investigator, U.S. Food and Drug Administration; John Ercolani, Senior Vice President, J&K Fresh East; George Sibley; Christopher Ryan, Key Account Manager, Perishables, GEODIS USA, Inc.; Kurt Reichert, Fumigation Director, Western Fumigation; and Lisa Himber, Vice President, Maritime Exchange for the Delaware River and Bay.

Thank you to PWPM for hosting the CACC, Panelists for their participation, and all attendees.  Special thanks to the supportive CACC members who sponsored the 2017 Annual Fresh Fruit Fall Workshop:  GEODIS USA, Inc., Holt Logistics Corp., J&K Fresh East, The Port of Wilmington Delaware, and Western Fumigation.

The 20th Annual “Friend of Chile” Awards Luncheon

Monday, November 20th, 2017

The Chilean & American Chamber of Commerce
20th Annual “Friend of Chile” Awards Luncheon
Friday, November 17th, 2017
The Union League of Philadelphia

On November 17th 2017, The Chilean and American Chamber of Commerce hosted members, friends, and special guests for the 20th Annual “Friend of Chile” Awards Luncheon.   Attendees gathered at the historic Union League of Philadelphia to honor the year’s awards recipients and celebrate the strong trade partnership between the Greater Philadelphia region and the Republic of Chile.

The Luncheon began with a Chilean wine tasting courtesy of wine sponsor Dependable Distribution Services before guests were invited into Lincoln Hall to begin the awards celebration.  As guests were seated, Robert Palaima, President and Chairman of the Chilean & American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia, and also recipient of the 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award, took the stage to welcome guests and officially begin the ceremony.

After an invocation courtesy of Reverend William Rex, Leo Holt of Holt Logistics was introduced as the Luncheon’s first speaker.  Holt began by congratulating Robert Palaima on being the recipient of this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award, noting that the Chilean and American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia is “the most recognized and envied” Chilean Chamber in the nation, and credited Palaima for his large contribution to achieve this status.  Holt then went on to speak about the origins of trade between the Greater Philadelphia Region and Chile.  Holt emphasized the importance of relationships between business partners abroad and stressed how vital this is to a successful trade partnership.

Before exiting the stage, Holt introduced a special guest whom he greatly admires, His Excellency Juan Gabriel Valdés, Chilean Ambassador to the United States.  After thanking Leo Holt and Reverend Rex, Ambassador Valdés conveyed his delight to be a part of the day’s Luncheon.  Ambassador Valdés, who had met with the CACCGP along with other Chilean Chambers across the U.S. a month earlier, spoke about the Chambers’ cooperation with each other and the bright future Chile and the United States have together.  His Excellency then addressed the upcoming elections in Chile, stating that Chile’s relationship with the United States is crucial for the country and will continue to be a strong partnership under Chile’s new government.

Jeff Theobald of PhilaPort was the next speaker to take the stage.  Theobald praised Governor Tom Wolf’s commitment to the Philadelphia Ports and Chilean Trade before introducing Pennsylvania Secretary of Transportation Leslie Richards, who would accept the 20th Annual “Friend of Chile” Award on behalf of Governor Tom Wolf.

Secretary Richards thanked those in attendance and expressed how honored Governor Wolf was to receive the “Friend of Chile” award.  Having allocated $300 million in investments in the region’s ports, Richards explained Governor Wolf’s commitment to his vision of sustainability and improvement for the transportation networks within the Greater Philadelphia Region.  She praised the investment for its ability to make for a more attractive environment for shippers and economic prosperity.  Richards noted her excitement to continue working with the Philadelphia Ports before exiting the stage for lunch to be served.

After attendees enjoyed a Chilean inspired meal, Honorary Consul of Chile Benjamin Leavenworth continued the ceremony to introduce Robert Palaima and present him with the 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award.  Leavenworth stated that the day’s banquet was living proof that fair trade is made possible through the friendship and trust of the Chamber’s members and partners.  After giving a brief biographical background of the award’s honoree, Leavenworth praised Palaima for his commitment to the Chilean and American Chamber of Commerce, stating that the award demonstrates Palaima’s genuine care for Chile and its people.  Leavenworth thanked Palaima for his contributions to the chamber, which have allowed it to grow and placed the Chamber in a much better position to compete internationally.  After noting some of the CACCGP’s recent activities and accolades, Leavenworth invited Palaima to the stage to accept the award with a standing ovation from all in attendance.

After thanking Leavenworth for his kind words, Palaima expressed his gratitude for having received the award and serving as President and Chairman for the Chamber. Palaima then went on to say that the future is bright for Chile and Philadelphia with Executive Director, Christina Lista and the Chamber’s Board of Directors.  Palaima went on to express his hopefulness for a reengaged trade deal between Chile and the United States, and asked those in attendance to reach out to legislative officials to ask for a new, revised trade agreement.  After thanking his wife, and the men and women at Delaware River Stevedores, Palaima left the stage as attendees rose to their feet to congratulate the honoree and conclude the day’s ceremony.

The Chilean & American Chamber of Commerce’s 20th Annual “Friend of Chile” Awards Luncheon would not have been possible without the support of many generous sponsors including Presenting Partner ProChile; Visionary Sponsors: Brandywine Realty Trust, Holt Logistics Corp., Ports of Delaware River Marine Trade Association; Presenting Sponsors: Port of Wilmington Delaware, Philaport; Corporate Table Sponsors: Aramark, Dayka & Hackett, Delaware River Stevedores, Inc., Dole Fresh Fruit, FreshPAC LLC, Geodis USA, Inc., J&K Fresh East, Loeper & Associates, Manfredi Cold Storage, Mattioni, Ltd., Morgan Stanley, RPS/Royal Fumigation, Sbrocco International, Inc., South Jersey Port Corporation, Tastyfruitti International, Inc., The Pilot’s Association for the Bay and River Delaware, Western Fumigation, and the World Trade Association; Associate Sponsors: Intercontinental Services, Maritime Exchange for the Delaware River and Bay; and Wine Sponsor: Dependable Distribution Services.

Special thanks to the Union League of Philadelphia for its hospitality in hosting the 20th Annual “Friend of Chile” Awards Luncheon.

For more photos from the 20th Annual “Friend of Chile” Awards Luncheon, please visit our Flickr page.

2017 Annual Fresh Fruit Workshop

Monday, November 6th, 2017

Friday, December 01, 2017
8:00 AM – 9:00 AM Tour of Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market
9:00 AM – 11:00 AM Program & Panel Discussion

Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market
6700 Essington Ave. J-232
Philadelphia, PA 19153

CACC Members: Free
CACC Non-Members: $25

Click here to register.

Join colleagues, port representatives, and government officials to participate in an interactive experience reviewing the trade, technical, legal, regulatory and business issues affecting the import of Chilean fresh fruit into the Delaware Valley Region.


Tom Mastromarco
Holt Logistics

Panelists (To Date):

Stephen Brady
Chief Agricultural Specialist – Port of Philadelphia, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Customs and Border Protection

John Ercolani
Senior Vice President, J&K Fresh East

Ed Fitzgerald
Senior Director of Trade Services, GEODIS USA, Inc.

Felipe Gajardo
Agricultural Trade Specialist, Agricultural Office – Embassy of Chile

Erin Grether-Lootens
Manager, Food Safety Policy & Programs, United Fresh Produce Association

Lisa Himber
Vice President, Maritime Exchange for the Delaware River and Bay

Marc Krasner
Acting Asst. Officer in Charge, Philadelphia USDA – Agricultural Marketing Service Office

Kurt Reichert
Fumigation Director, Western Fumigation

William Spence
Officer in Charge, USDA Animal Plant Health Inspection Agency – Plant Protection & Quarantine

Russell Vandermark
FDA Investigator, U.S. Food & Drug Administration

For speaking and sponsorship opportunities, please contact Christina Lista at 215-790-3627 or [email protected].

To learn more about the Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market, click here.