Cup of Excellence Executive Director Resigns, Susie Spindler Returns to ACE

ACE executive director Debbie Hill resigns, Susie Spindler returns

On Wednesday, Alliance for Coffee Excellence (ACE) Chairperson, Geoff Watts, announced that current executive director Debbie Hill has resigned. Susie Spindler ”who worked for ACE as executive director since its inception, but who retired in 2014 ”will return as the interim executive director.

ACE exists in major part to operate coffee auctions in producing countries under the name Cup of Excellence.

Here is the full letter sent by Geoff to members of ACE:

Dear Cup of Excellence Family

I’m writing today on behalf of the ACE Board of Directors to inform you of a recent change. Debbie Hill has resigned as the Executive Director of The Alliance for  Coffee Excellence, effective immediately.  The Board has asked Susie Spindler to return as interim Executive Director during this period of  transition and she has graciously accepted.

We are delighted to have Susie back to help guide the organization forward through the coming months and hope that you will join us giving her your full support as she reintegrates into our operations. You can reach her at

There is much to be done to prepare for a successful series of Cup of Excellence events in Central America this year.   Please know that everyone at ACE, including both staff and board members, will be working vigorously with our origin country partners to ensure that the quality of the program in 2016 will be everything you’ve come to expect and more.   There are some exciting developments to look forward to, and we are looking forward to sharing them with you as they come to fruition.  

We’d also like to acknowledge that the Cup of Excellence program is based entirely on your support, and our collective desire to discover and reward beauty and craftsmanship in coffee wherever it is found.  ACE is a house built by and for its members and the farmers whose individual achievements give us all so much to celebrate.  

We understand that sometimes there is not enough dialogue between ACE and its global family of contributors and we are committed to making this change.   It begins with ACE being more proactive in reaching out to engage you and solicit your input and ideas.  You can be certain that there will be far more communication in the days and months ahead.   We need your help and collaboration, because it is only by working together that we can ensure ACE and the Cup of Excellence can continue its mission to enable and catalyze positive changes in our  industry.

With respect and gratitude,


Alliance for Coffee Excellence


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