J.R. Watkins - Handcrafted in the USA Since 1868 ...  Naturally
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Executive Team

From small beginnings to the company we are today, we’ve always aimed to exceed customers’ expectations. Our executive team strives to uphold a mission of integrity, consistency and timeless comfort with our natural products.

Mark Jacobs - CEO
Mark E. Jacobs, CEO

Having worked in the family businesses from a very young age, Mark has been involved with The J.R. Watkins Company since the Jacobs family acquired the company in 1978. Since graduating from Brown University, he has worked at J.R. Watkins in various capacities, primarily in the sales and marketing areas. In 1996, he became Vice President of Sales at Watkins, and in 1998 he was named Chief Executive Officer. But he doesn’t just talk the talk: Every morning, Mark rises and shines with a dash of J.R. Watkins pure cinnamon on his granola and blueberries.

In addition to his role as C.E.O. of Watkins, over the past 10 years Mark has served on the Board of Directors of Winona Health, Winona ORC Industries (an organization dedicated to serving the disabled community), St. Mary’s University of Minnesota, Winona State University and the Great River Shakespeare Festival.

Mark is an active member of the Young Presidents’ Organization, likes to play tennis and ski and always keeps his JR Watkins Peppermint Lip Balm within arm’s reach.

JR Rigley - President & CMO
J.R. Rigley, President & CMO

J.R. Rigley joined The J.R. Watkins Company in July of 2005 and manages all sales, product development, research & development, marketing, international business and customer service initiatives. It’s a big job, but maybe not as demanding as coaching his kids in lacrosse.

J.R. comes to The J.R. Watkins Company with 16 years of experience in sales and marketing, having worked for Procter & Gamble and McCormick. He received a B.S. in economics from Towson University and an M.B.A. from Johns Hopkins University.

In addition to his roles as President & CMO and lacrosse coach, he serves on several boards including Cookie Cart, a non profit helping youth with career employment, and the Orono Youth Lacrosse Association.  His favorite gourmet spice is pure cinnamon, and if he were stranded on a desert island with only one J.R. Watkins product, he would pick Aloe & Green Tea Lotion.

Michelle Fehr - CFO/COO
Michelle Fehr, COO and CFO

Since 2013, Michelle Fehr has overseen the manufacturing, materials management, logistics, and quality assurance for J.R. Watkins products as well as all financial aspects of the company. She loves to travel (she’s even hung out with lions in Zimbabwe!), golf and alpine ski.

Before she came to The J.R. Watkins Company, she started her career working for Continental Baking Company (as in, Wonder Bread and Hostess Cakes) where she held various positions in Finance from Accounting Supervisor to Regional Controller. In 1997, Michelle joined Maple Leaf Foods, where she switched over to operations, leading the operations team of Maple Leaf’s Frozen Bakery Division. Most recently, Michelle was the Senior Vice President of Sales and Operations for Dawn Food Products, a sweet baked goods company. Michelle attended the University of Idaho, where she graduated with a degree in business finance. With a resume so full of sweet treats, it may not surprise you to learn that her favorite J.R. Watkins product is Coconut Sugar and Shea Body Scrub.