Management Team

Kelly Green
Kelly Green, Owner and Chairman of the Board
As the third-generation owner of Birko and a Colorado native, Kelly carries on the vision for food safety started by her grandparents, Ward and Florence Smith. She is passionate about food safety, based on Birko’s innovation in providing environmentally safe chemical formulations, state-of-the-art equipment, servicing capabilities and technology.
Kelly oversees Birko’s manufacturing operations, and is also active in new business
development at the corporate level and travels frequently to meet with customers and prospects.
Kelly earned her MBA from Colorado State University and her BA in communications from the University of Colorado. Kelly is also a former MVP for the University of Colorado’s women’s golf team. She is a former member of the North American Meat Association’s board of directors, the CSU Executive MBA Board, the Colorado Women’s Business Chamber of Commerce and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council-West. Kelly is a member of Vistage International, a global network for chief executives.
Kelly was recognized as a 2014 Woman of Influence in the Food Industry by The Griffin Report of Food Marketing. She was also named a finalist for the 2012 and 2014 Outstanding Women in Business award, sponsored by the Denver Business Journal. Under Kelly’s leadership, Birko was ranked #34 in the 2014 Top 50 Family-Owned Companies by ColoradoBiz magazine, and Birko was a 2013 Top Company Winner by ColoradoBiz magazine.

Kelly’s Expertise:

  • Food safety for meat and produce
  • Protein’s role in helping fight world hunger
  • Family-owned and women-owned businesses
Mark Swanson
Mark Swanson, Chief Executive Officer
Mark has over 20 years of professional experience with some of the most respected institutions in the protein industry, including Iowa Beef Processors, ConAgra Foods and Swift & Company. He serves on the executive committee for the U.S. Meat Export Federation and on the board of directors of the North American Meat Association. He is a member of the National Cattleman’s Beef Association, United Fresh Produce Association, the American Meat Institute and Vistage International, a global network for chief executives. Mark earned a BS in agriculture business and an executive MBA, both from Colorado State University, and is the immediate past president of the CSU Alumni Association Board of Directors. He is a member of the CSU CIS Advisory Board and a past member of the CSU Entrepreneurs Center Board of Directors.Mark frequently makes presentations on food safety to industry groups, government agencies and graduate degree programs.
Mark’s Expertise:

  • Food safety
  • Protein processing
  • The Birko Advantage, combining chemistry, equipment and technology for a guaranteed 20% cost savings
Mike Gangel
Mike Gangel, President, Chad Equipment, LLC
Mike is president of Chad Equipment, LLC, a Birko company. Chad Equipment pioneered the concepts of washing beef carcasses before evisceration, pasteurizing red meat carcasses and washing viscera tables and viscera pans using brushes and sprays. Chad also pioneered the hot water pasteurization system, which uses recirculated water to minimize water and steam usage and disposal costs.Mike serves on the board of the North American Meat Association and is a member of the Southwest Meat Association and the American Meat Institute.He received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from St. Benedict’s College and a master’s degree in economics from Notre Dame University.
Mike’s Expertise:

  • Specialty harvesting and processing equipment
  • Antimicrobial processing methods including recirculating hot water pasteurization systems
Terry L. McAninch
Terry L. McAninch, Vice President, Research and Development
Terry is familiar with a wide variety of applications for Birko’s products, including tripe washing, foot washing, denaturants, sanitation, tree washing, smokehouse cleaning, blood operations, trolley and gam cleaning and lubrication. He also has expertise in product formulation, field tech service and troubleshooting.Terry joined Birko in 1973 as a lab technician and later initiated Birko’s quality control program.He is a member of the American Chemical Society, the American Leather Chemists’ Association and the American Oil Chemists’ Society.Terry earned a BA in chemistry and mathematics from Clarion University, and an MS in chemistry from the University of Iowa, where he was a research and teaching assistant.Terry holds several patents, including a tripe bleaching method; a composition for removing hair from full hair whole carcasses; a peracetic acid waste water treatment; a hide curing additive; and a hide raceway treatment.
Terry’s Expertise:

  • Sanitizers and disinfectants
  • Formulation and quality control
  • Best practices and products for hides, rendering, and laundry
  • Meat and poultry processing including byproducts
Philip Snellen
Philip Snellen, Vice President, Sales
Philip works closely with the firm’s U.S. and Canadian technical representatives in the protein industries. Philip joined Birko from Zep, Inc., where he held senior positions in both sales and marketing. His background also includes a variety of executive positions with Diversey, Inc., and with Australia-based Gibson Chemical Industries where he became division manager for their U.S. subsidiary, Puritan/Churchill.Philip received degrees in both chemistry and economics from LaTrobe University in Melbourne, Australia.
Philip’s Expertise:

  • The economics of efficient chemical utilization
  • Yield enhancement
  • Pairing the right products and equipment to meet processors’ needs