President & CEO
Palmer Candy Co.
Sioux City, Iowa
Marty Palmer was born and raised in Sioux City, Iowa. He attended the University of Colorado in Boulder, graduating in 1980 with a BS in civil engineering and a BS in business administration.
Representing the fifth generation of family ownership, Palmer — at the age of 23 — joined the Palmer Candy Co. and immediately became its ceo with full management responsibilities.
Founded in 1878, the Palmer Candy Co. has manufactured hundreds of different confections during its 137-year history. Over the past 35 years, under Palmer’s leadership, the company has grown exponentially and now operates two plants totaling more than 300,000 sq. ft., with a seasonal employment of more than 400 team members. Palmer Candy has vastly broadened its market scope and is nationally recognized as a top producer of private-label candies and general-line chocolates.
Palmer is active within various industry groups having previously served as a NCA board member. He was on the original All Candy Expo committee and served as a two-term vice president. He is currently on the NCA governance committee. Palmer has also held committee positions for the National Candy Wholesalers Association (NCWA) and later the American Wholesalers Marketers Association (AWMA) and became president of their Young Executives Group. He was recognized by the AWMA as an Industry Dean and received the Young Executive of the Year award. In 2003 Palmer was nominated for Candy Industry’s Kettle Award.
Palmer is civically active and has served as the chairman of St. Luke’s Regional Hospital as well as the Sioux City Chamber of Commerce. Believing strongly in the importance of education, he is a member of the Morningside College Board of Directors and is a founding member and past president of the Sioux City Public Schools Education Foundation.
Palmer is married to Michele and has three grown children, Ross, Chloe, and Duncan. He enjoys mountain biking, road cycling, skiing, and sailboat racing.