Pete Grande has guided Los Angeles-based Command Packaging, which he co-owns, from a start-up company to one of the leading U.S. manufacturers of HDPE plastic carry bags. He led the firm's expansion into the high-end retail market through the development of Super Gloss-brand plastic bags in 1986 as well as via the introduction 10 years ago of a complete plastic carryout bag program for the restaurant market. Today, Command Packaging claims to hold the largest market share for specialty plastic restaurant carryout bags in the United States.
Grande began his career in 1980 as the Southwestern sales manager for the plastic division of Dow Chemical Co. Three years later Linear Films Inc. hired him as national sales manager for its start-up HMW film products division where in 1985 he introduced the first plastic carryout bag to McDonald's Corp. In 1987, as executive vice president of Hilex Poly Inc., Grande led the firm's sales reorganization and entry into the grocery sack market. During his two-year tenure, Hilex Poly more than doubled its sales before being acquired by Sonoco Products Co. Inc.
In 1993 the California Film Extruders & Converters Association elected Grande to its board of directors. In August 2005 CFECA re-elected him to its board and he now serves as president for the 2006-07 term. To help protect domestic plastic bag producers from environmental and import pressures, Grande in 2004 co-wrote and promoted a grassroots industry certification program known as Environmentally Preferred Rating.
The University of Washington has been a member of the Golden West Chapter of The Young Presidents Organization since 1993.