Roche received degrees from Saginaw Valley College and Michigan State University. He joined Michigan Sugar Company in 1976 and moved up quickly through the ranks. In 1994 he became the company’s president and chief operating officer and, as a result of acquisitions, was also involved in the management of the cane sugar refiner Savannah Foods and Imperial Sugar. He became president of Minn-Dak Farmers Cooperative in 2001 and expanded and improved the cooperative’s operations.
Roche served as a member of the United States sugar industry’s Mexico Task Force, where he advised government officials on both sides of the border regarding the integration of the sweetener market. He also served as a trustee and senior vice president of the United States Beet Sugar Association and on the boards of the Sugar Association, United Sugars Corporation and Midwest Agri- Commodities.
Roche is the 56th recipient of the Dyer Memorial Award, which is sponsored by the Sugar Club, an international sugar forum.
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