This is the eighth installment in a year-long series of department profiles to help readers learn more about the PPAI staff members who serve them.

As part of its mission to serve and support the promotional products industry and the companies and professionals that operate within it, PPAI provides management services to the Promotional Products Education Foundation (PPEF) and the Specialty Advertising Association of California (SAAC). PPEF is the industry’s nonprofit founded to recognize and encourage scholastic excellence and academic performance among promotional products industry employees and their college-aged children, and its scholarship program, funded by PPAI and generous donations from companies and individuals within the promotional products industry, enables youth and professionals to continue their education at the collegiate level. SAAC, whose members are largely located in the Southern California region, supports the California promotional products industry by engaging and meeting the needs of its professionals and the businesses they serve through a range of programs and services. PPEF and SAAC are independent, 501 (c)(6) nonprofits, and their boards are assisted by dedicated PPAI staff members, who serve as executive directors of the organizations and can draw on Association staff resources to support their goals.

I was adopted at birth and started DNA research this year through 23andMe and Ancestry. I’m still working on finding my birth parents, but I have determined that one family line arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts, in 1627. The research is a bit addictive and now I’m hoping I had an ancestor on the Mayflower.

During my childhood, I was certain I was going to the Olympics in figure skating and would be the next Kristi Yamaguchi. There’s still time, right?  


James Khattak is news editor of PPB.