USDA Appoints International Paper’s Santiago Arbelaez to the 2023 Paper and Packaging Board

Jan 30, 2023 11:50 AM ET
Santiago Arbelaez smiling at the camera, wearing a suit and tie.

The Paper and Packaging Board (P+PB) announced that Santiago Arbelaez, Vice President, Strategy, Industrial Packaging, International Paper has been named to the P+PB Board of Directors for a three-year term, appointed by USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack.

Arbelaez will join an eight-member Board of Directors and will collaborate across dedicated committees and working groups, and oversee the paper and packaging sectors’ national program focused on sustainability and recycling.

The Paper and Packaging Board’s How Life Unfolds® campaign is a national promotional campaign funded by manufacturers and importers of paper and paper-based packaging otherwise known as the Paper Checkoff program. More than 40 companies participate in the Paper Checkoff, an industry-funded promotion program established by the USDA in 2014. The campaign focuses on the industry’s unrivaled sustainability story. Consumers want to make choices they believe are more planet-friendly and reduce waste. This emphasis on sustainability will improve consumers’ perceptions about the paper and packaging industry’s contribution to environmental solutions. The checkoff will conduct the next renewal voting in October 2023.

“I am honored to be a part of the P+PB Board of Directors and to join other members from the paper and packaging industry to spread the sustainable nature of our products,” said Arbelaez. “The P+PB campaign is informing consumers throughout the U.S. of the circular nature of our industry and why they should feel good about using paper-based products – I am excited to be a part of this important work.”

Officers and board members for 2023 are:

  • Chair: Jonathan Kraft, President, The Kraft Group
  • Vice Chair: Rob Melton, Senior Vice President, Commercial, Pulp and Paper, Domtar
  • Secretary/Treasurer: James Harrell, Division Vice President, Industrial Products/Paper Divisions-Europe, Sonoco
  • At-Large Member: Beth-Cormier, Vice President of Research, Development and Sustainability, Sappi
  • Santiago Arbelaez, Vice President, Strategy, Industrial Packaging, International Paper
  • Richard Bennett, Vice President of Paperboard Sales & Marketing, Pactiv Evergreen
  • Scott Light, Executive Vice President, Packaging & Cellulose, Georgia-Pacific LLC
  • Alpa Sutaria, Senior Vice President, Strategy and Sustainability, WestRock

Santiago has been an officer of International Paper since April 1, 2015. He began his career with IP in 1992 as a financial analyst and has since held positions of increased responsibility in marketing services, sales, sales leadership, and general management within Industrial Packaging. Santiago serves on the company’s Global Diversity & Inclusion Council, and previously served on the IP-PAC Board of Directors and 401K Committee.

About Paper and Packaging Board  
The Paper and Packaging Board promotes the use of paper products and paper-based packaging by highlighting how their sustainable nature, the industry’s practices and recycling help contribute to a healthier planet. Forty-seven U.S. manufacturers and importers collectively fund the national marketing campaign,

About International Paper

International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a leading global supplier of renewable fiber-based products. We produce corrugated packaging products that protect and promote goods, and enable worldwide commerce, and pulp for diapers, tissue and other personal care products that promote health and wellness. Headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., we employ approximately 38,000 colleagues globally. We serve customers worldwide, with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, North Africa and Europe. Net sales for 2021 were $19.4 billion. See how we’re building a better future for people, the planet, and our company at