Khonat owns two stores in Blackburn - Burnley Road News and Redlam News - and is also a Labour councillor for the town's Shear Brow ward. He has been an NFRN member since 1988 and plans to tackle retail crime and fight the proposed tobacco display ban in his new role.
"The tobacco legislation as it stands will not achieve its objective of reducing consumption by young people but it will have a profound and damaging effect on businesses," he said. "We must fight it." Khonat added "more must be done" on retail crime, which he called a "daily and very threatening menace" for many NFRN members.
Parminder Singh of Birmingham was named vice president and Tyne & Wear's Kieran McDonnell deputy vice president.