Below, click on each 2015 presenter's name or photo to access their bio.
Below, click on each 2015 presenter's name or photo to access their bio.
California Department of Food and Agriculturehttps://www.cdfa.ca.gov/ @CDFAnews
KAREN ROSS was appointed secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture on January 12, 2011, by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. Secretary Ross has deep leadership experience in agricultural issues nationally, internationally, and in California. Prior to joining CDFA, Secretary Ross was chief of staff for U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, a position she accepted in 2009. Prior to that appointment, she served as president of the California Association of Winegrape Growers from 1996 to 2009, and as vice-president of the Agricultural Council of California from 1989 to 1996. Before moving to California, Secretary Ross served as director of government relations for the Nebraska Rural Electric Association and as field representative for U.S. Senator Edward Zorinsky.
Co-founder and CEO
Shireen Yates is co-founder and CEO of 6SensorLabs. After five years in sales and marketing at Google and an MBA from MIT Sloan, she decided to pursue her passion for helping people lead healthier lifestyles by starting 6SensorLabs. Founded in 2013, 6SensorLabs is creating greater food transparency that enables consumers to make better health decisions. Currently in development, its first product is Nima, a discreet and portable device that allows consumers to test their meals for food allergens in two minutes or less. Shireen has been leading a gluten-free diet for the past eight years due to multiple food allergies and is always on the hunt for new gluten-free foods, but still finds it risky to eat out safely.
Clear Labshttps://www.clearlabs.com/ @ClearLabsInc
MAHNI GHORASHI leads commercial activities at Clear Labs, including strategy, marketing, and corporate development. After graduating from MIT and getting his MBA, Mahni pursued his interest in big data and genomics as head of marketing at Bina Technologies (acquired by Roche). In pursuit of his next adventure, Mahni co-founded Clear Labs to set a new standard in molecular food quality for the global food industry. Mahni is also a concert pianist in his off hours and a tireless supporter of the arts.
Director of Programs and Culinary Nutrition
The Culinary Institute of Americahttp://www.ciaprochef.com/
SOPHIE EGAN is director of programs and culinary nutrition for strategic initiatives at The Culinary Institute of America, where she oversees a portfolio of the college’s food industry leadership initiatives focused on health and sustainability. Sophie has written on food and health for The New York Times’ Well section, WIRED, and Sunset magazine, where she contributed to The Sunset Cookbook and The One-Block Feast book. Sophie has also worked as a communications consultant for clients including eBay Foundation, Health Career Connection, and The Vitality Institute on its Food@Work initiative. She holds a master’s degree of public health, with a focus on health and social behavior, from UC Berkeley, where she was a Center for Health Leadership Fellow. She also holds a B.A. with honors in history from Stanford University. She is the author of a forthcoming book on American food culture (William Morrow/HarperCollins, May 2016)
Director of Product Development
Hampton Creekhttps://www.hamptoncreek.com/ @benslab
BEN ROCHE is director of product development for Hampton Creek. Hailing from South Carolina, he graduated from Johnson & Wales University with a baking and pastry degree and completed a culinary externship at a boutique hotel near London, England. Upon returning to the U.S., Ben joined the team of the world-renowned Charlie Trotter’s restaurant in Chicago. After a year and a half at Charlie Trotter’s, he joined forces with Homaro Cantu at Moto Restaurant in Chicago. There, he was promoted to executive pastry chef, where he would remain for another eight years. While at Moto, Ben developed new cooking techniques and incorporated cutting-edge scientific machinery into his cooking. During this period at Moto, Roche also travelled the world performing cooking demonstrations and giving presentations about his work. At Hampton Creek, his current project is to make “scrambled eggs” out of plants that are not only as versatile as a chicken egg but every bit as delicious. Some of Ben’s accomplishments include: obtaining Michelin stars for his work at Moto; winning the Food Network’s Iron Chef competition in 2006 against Masaharu Morimoto; writing and starring in the Discovery Channel’s Future Food television show in 2010; and giving a ‘TED talk’ at the TED conference in Long Beach, CA in 2011.
Director of Wellness and Food Policy
SARA BURNETT serves as director of wellness and food policy at Panera and is responsible for the policies that shape the company’s perspective and commitments on food issues. Prior to this role, she worked for more than a decade on the Panera quality assurance team, overseeing special projects including the creation and implementation of the company’s raised without antibiotics program, animal welfare standards, and 2014 Food Policy. Before joining Panera in 2005, Sara worked with Ecolab’s food safety division. She received a BA in biology and psychology from Washington University (St. Louis) and her MBA from Webster University.
EVP Strategic Marketing
Compass Grouphttp://www.compass-group.com/ @susie7505
As executive vice president of strategic marketing and business excellence for Compass Group North America, SUSIE WEINTRAUB supports development of organic growth and business retention strategies for over $7 billion of Compass Group’s managed revenue. A founding member of the Business Excellence team formed in 2007 to deliver business efficiencies and leverage operational best practice across core Business sectors, Susie’s career with Compass Group began in 1993 as a marketing manager at Ohio Wesleyan University in the Columbus, Ohio area. Since that time, she has held various marketing and communication roles within the company, always closely interacting with operations. In 1995, she moved into marketing role with the educational sector and in 1998 relocated to Seattle, as the marketing director with the original Eurest Dining Services management team at Microsoft. In June 2001, she was named the director of marketing for the Eurest division of Compass Group and has held various marketing positions up until her most recent promotion in October 2014. An active member of the Society for Foodservice Management and engaged in various school community organizations, Susie holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing from the University of Toledo.
Co-Founder and Co-CEO
Beneficial State Bankhttp://beneficialstatebank.com/ @BeneficialState
KAT TAYLOR works in service of restoring social justice and environmental well-being. Kat is active in a variety of social enterprises, public benefit and philanthropic ventures on the West Coast. Currently, she serves as co-founder and co-CEO of Beneficial State Bank, a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) whose mission is to bring beneficial banking to low-income communities in an economically and environmentally sustainable manner. Beneficial State Bank is the result of a merger between OneCalifornia Bank, which Kat and her husband, Tom Steyer, founded in Oakland, CA, and ShoreBank Pacific, with offices in California, Oregon, and Washington. The bank’s revolutionary ownership mandates that any distributed profit be invested in the low-income communities it serves and environment upon which we all depend. Kat is also a Founding Director of TomKat Ranch Educational Foundation (TKREF), dedicated to inspiring a sustainable food system through ranching, training, tours, research, and school food and garden programs. TKREF owns the social enterprise LeftCoast GrassFed, raising humanely cattle and other livestock for the benefit of people and the planet. Kat serves and has served on many non-profit boards, including the Harvard Board of Overseers, Good Samaritan Family Resource Center, ProPublica, CuriOdyssey, Insight Prison Project, KQED and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. She graduated from Harvard College and earned a JD/MBA from Stanford University.
Chair, Global Food Sector
TISH VAN DYKE oversees the Global Food Sector at Edelman. She has more than 20 years of experience as a communications practitioner and counselor. Tish has designed and built leadership platforms for industry-leading companies and organizations looking to grow their reputation and business in the food, nutrition, health, and wellness arenas. She has helped clients work through issues that impact their businesses, including sustainable food production and distribution, food safety and quality, labeling, market entry, reformulation and innovation, dietary guidelines, and food marketing. In addition, she has helped clients build and implement communications strategies that demonstrate their value and benefit to key stakeholders and audiences. Tish is a member of the Institute of Medicine’s Obesity Solutions Roundtable and serves on the Board of the American News Women’s Club. She also served as a member of the Core Advisory Group for the United Nations Global Compact’s development of Sustainable Agriculture Principles for Business. Tish holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Trinity College and a master’s degree in modern British history from Durham University, England.
Vice President of Culinary
Compass Group, Business Excellencehttp://www.compass-group.com/ @christine_seitz
CHRISTINE SEITZ graduated in 1984 from California State University, Long Beach, with a BS in nutrition and foodservice management, and then continued on to the California Culinary Academy, graduating in 1986. Christine has worked in the restaurant industry from high school to present. She joined Bon Appétit Management Company in 1987 as their first executive chef; from that position, she developed into a general manager of a two million dollar account. After many years in the field she became a consultant for Bon Appétit and Compass Group, managing over 120 new account openings, running corporate chef trainings, and developing new food programs focusing on cuisines that range from Southeast Asia to the Middle East to south of the Equator and healthy cooking. She joined Compass Group in the spring of 2012 as the director of culinary development and was recently promoted to vice president of culinary for Compass Group, Business Excellence. Current initiatives include its corporate food philosophy for healthy sustainable menus and commitment to the adapted Menus of Change initiatives; working with distributors and chefs to rescue produce through Imperfectly Delicious Produce (IDP); recipe development and chef profitability trainings. As part of the Bon Appétit-sponsored team, Christine was successfully entered into the Guinness Book of World Record for “World’s Largest Stir Fry,” Charlotte Shout, 2004.
NA’AMA MORAN grew up on a turkey farm in Israel and came to the US to study economics, math, and political science at Cornell University. After a stint in finance, she decided to pursue her dream of building products that make people’s lives better with technology and moved to Silicon Valley, where she concurrently took classes in computer science at Stanford and co-founded Zappedy, a services platform enabling local businesses to close the loop between online marketing and offline sales. The company was acquired by Groupon in 2011. While working at Zappedy, Na’ama encountered a large variety of restaurant owners and food entrepreneurs. She discovered the hardships of running a restaurant and was surprised by the lack of transparency and ease-of-use in such an important marketplace. With her cofounder, she traveled the United States meeting food professionals from the smallest mom and pop restaurant owners to the chairman of Sysco. These conversations served as the foundation for what Sourcery is today. She is committed to building a product that will help food businesses thrive, and enable more diversity in the food system.
CEO and founder
JASON LANGHEIER, MD, MPH, is the CEO and founder of Zipongo, “Eating Well Made Simple.” Zipongo provides digital nutrition counseling for Medicaid communities, health plan members, and employees of large companies, personalizing recommendations based on people’s preferences, health biometrics, income, and cooking vs. eating out habits. Jay previously launched Boston Medical Center’s Nutrition and Fitness for Life pediatric obesity program, founded Fitness Forward and the Coach K Drive 2 Fitness health education for low-income elementary aged kids and was the co-founder and CTO of Proventys, which developed personalized cancer decision support and is now part of US Oncology and McKesson. He studied medical school, biostatistics, and clinical research at DukeMed, Harvard, and UCSF, respectively, following neuroscience research at Williams College, Cambridge University, Duke, and the NIH. Jay is also a science consultant for Bad Robot and Paramount Pictures.
ShopWell Labshttp://www.shopwell.com/ @shopwell
As the CEO of ShopWell Labs, ELLIOTT GRANT has led the commercialization and growth of the no. 1 free personalized nutrition platform in the United States. The ShopWell mission is to help shoppers discover better food. His first company, HarvestMark, grew to become the industry leader in fresh supply chain traceability and analytics and was acquired by Trimble (NASDAQ: TRMB). Prior to starting HarvestMark, Elliott was a vice president for operations for a major food-packaging manufacturer, and spent five years at McKinsey & Company advising clients on operations. He earned his PhD in engineering from Cambridge University. He currently holds 23 US patents and is the inventor of the Voice Pick Code, which is incorporated into the PTI standard. Elliott was named by The Packer as one of the produce industry’s top 25 executives and Silicon Valley Business Journal selected him as one of the 40 leading executives under the age of 40. He is honored to serve on the board of directors of the Produce Marketing Association and chairs the PMA’s Science & Technology Committee.
chief science officer and co-founder
Pilot R+Dhttp://www.pilotrd.com/ @alibouzari
ALI BOUZARI is the chief science officer and a co-founder of Pilot R+D, a culinary development company based in northern California. Ali began cooking in restaurant kitchens while studying biochemistry as an undergraduate. In 2011, at the age of 23, he started teaching at The Culinary Institute of America while obtaining his Ph.D. in food biochemistry from the University of California, Davis. For his dissertation, Ali stayed true to his roots as a cook and collaborated with the French Laundry to study a uniquely culinary topic: cooking vegetables sous vide. This interaction jumpstarted his career as a consultant to the culinary industry, allowing him to work closely with some of the most innovative restaurants in the country, including Benu, Bar Tartine, SPQR, The Restaurant at Meadowood, Eleven Madison Park, and The Thomas Keller Restaurant Group. Ali is writing a groundbreaking book on how food works, to be published by Ecco in 2016. He is also a contributor to the forthcoming edition of Modernist Cuisine. Ali has been asked to speak about the culinary science at national science conferences, top universities, NPR, and multiple TED conferences. He was recently honored as part of Zagat’s and Forbes’s 30 Under 30 lists.
Founder and Chief Innovation Officer
Revolution Foodshttp://revolutionfoods.com/ @kirstentobey
KIRSTEN SAENZ TOBEY founded Revolution Foods in 2006 with Kristin Groos Richmond, while they were classmates at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business. Kirsten continues to steward the mission and drive the brand vision and impact strategy for the company. Kirsten’s work centers around developing innovative, attainable solutions for providing access to healthy food and education to families across the US. Revolution Foods was named by Fast Company as one of the world’s 50 most innovative companies in 2015. Kristin and Kirsten were named by the Schwab Foundation and World Economic Forum as Social Entrepreneurs of the Year for 2015. They were also co-named Entrepreneur of the Year by NewSchools Venture Fund in 2010, identified as Time’s Education Activists of 2011, and listed among Fortune’s 40 under 40 for 2013. Prior to founding Revolution Foods, Kirsten’s career spanned from leading experiential education programs in the US and Ecuador to evaluating the scalability of school feeding programs with the United Nations Hunger Task Force in Ghana. Kirsten is an Ashoka Fellow, an Aspen Institute Catto Fellow, a member of the Culinary Institute of America’s Sustainable Business Council. She currently is a member of the Board of Directors for Mercaris, Net Impact and People’s Community Market.
Google Life Scienceshttps://www.google.com/
IAN PEIKON holds a degree in BME from Duke University and a PhD in Biology from the Watson School of Biological Sciences at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. He has worked in a variety of fields from brain machine interfaces to molecular neurobiology. Currently, Ian works at Google[x] Life Sciences on human genomics.
ROB HURLBUT’s 28 years of experience in food and agricultural has been distinguished by his ability to build value through the development of transparent supply chains that deliver a clear consumer promise. As CEO of Niman Ranch, Rob created the industry’s leading premium meat brand by constructing a network of over 500 sustainable farmers who, under common quality and husbandry protocols, supplied the nation’s finest restaurants and retailers with extraordinary pork, beef and lamb. The company was one of the first to construct a vertical supply chain to capture consumer premiums and return them to the farm. In 2006 Rob built on the transparency theme and founded Attune Foods, a company dedicated to delivering simple ingredients for maximum nutritional benefit. The company nurtured a consumer need into a thriving business that was subsequently acquired by Post Foods to become its strategic platform in the rapidly growing natural and organic food segment. Rob’s earlier experiences managing a business at Nestle, and leading the company’s beverage division coffee buying and commodity risk management department provided insight to the impact that (big) food could have on our planet, people and economy. At Equilibrium, Rob leads the firm’s efforts to democratize access to sustainable and organic foods by investing institutional capital to build appropriate scale, consumer focused, agricultural and food businesses that effectively address global food needs, improve the environment, and positively impact communities.
Bar Tartinehttp://www.bartartine.com/ @BarTartine
NICK BALLA is the co-chef of Bar Tartine. Known for dishes that evoke distant places and a cooking style that draws on slow, subtle, and labor-intensive techniques, he has a decidedly global culinary approach. Born in Michigan, Nick spent time there and in Brooklyn before moving to Budapest for his high school years. In Hungary he lived with a family whose traditional cooking style (replete with backyard slaughter) made an indelible impression. While at The Culinary Institute of America, Nick completed an externship to help open Michael Mina’s Nobhill Tavern at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, and traveled repeatedly to Japan for extensive stages. In 2004, he moved to San Francisco and took a job as line cook at Ozumo, which provided an outlet for his ongoing interest in Japanese cuisine. In 2007 he was tapped to take his first post as executive chef at O Izakaya, and in 2009, as executive chef and partner, he launched Nombe, a venue with a focus on small plates. Esquire named Nick a “chef to watch” and Nombe earned 3 stars from the San Francisco Chronicle, placement in the Chronicle’s list of Top 100 Bay Area restaurants and a recommendation in the 2010 Michelin Guide. At Bar Tartine, where he has been cooking since January of 2011, he employs his research into artisan techniques such as sausage preparation, cheese making, pickling, and preserving to produce those authentic homemade flavors. Nick and Cortney Burns are the authors of The Bar Tartine Cookbook, which won the 2015 James Beard Award in the Cooking From a Professional Point of View category.
Bar Tartinehttp://www.bartartine.com/ @cortneyburns
CORTNEY BURNS is the co-chef and production manager at Bar Tartine in San Francisco. She fell in love with the craft of cooking while taking culinary courses during high school in Chicago, IL, but went on to study cultural anthropology and the Tibetan language at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A year studying abroad in Nepal and India in 1999 introduced her to exotic spices and flavors, further fueling her desire to cook. After cooking professionally in Australia, Cortney moved to the Bay Area in 2001, honing her kitchen and butchery skills at Café Rouge, Quince, Boulette’s Larder, Cafe Adagia, and a myriad of wineries in the Napa Valley. Working closely with Chef Nick Balla at Bar Tartine, Cortney manages the production of all house-made products, including cultured dairy items, fresh and aged cheeses, charcuterie, pickles, dried spices, fermented beverages, and pastries. She loves using Old World methods like fermentation, curing, and drying as a way to layer flavors and intensity into food. Cortney and Nick are the authors of The Bar Tartine Cookbook, which won the 2015 James Beard Award in the Cooking From a Professional Point of View category.
Golden Gate Restaurant Associationhttp://ggra.org/ @Gwynethb
A lifelong lover of food being the granddaughter of farmers, GWYNETH BORDEN joined the Golden Gate Restaurant Association (GGRA) as executive director in February 2014. GGRA is a nearly 80-year-old nonprofit trade association that supports and empowers the culinary industry in the San Francisco Bay Area, focusing on advocacy, education, marketing, events and training. Prior to GGRA, Gwyneth spent 10 years at IBM as the manager of corporate citizenship and corporate affairs for several states in the Western United States, managing IBM’s corporate citizenship, government relations and philanthropic activities focused on education, sustainability, workforce and economic development. Prior to IBM, Gwyneth was the director of government relations for the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, a legislative aide then San Francisco Supervisor Gavin Newsom, and a staff assistant in U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer’s office. Gwyneth is also a director of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency and commissioner, San Francisco Parking Authority, following six years of service as a planning commissioner for the City and County of San Francisco. Gwyneth is involved in a number of civic and philanthropic organizations and has received numerous awards for her leadership, including being named by the San Francisco Business Times as an Influential Woman in Bay Area Business in 2014 and 2015, and was previously recognized as an industry leader by Professional Business Women of California in 2013.
Institute for the Futurehttp://www.iftf.org/home/ @myravery
Miriam Lueck Avery is a research director with Institute for the Future, a nonprofit research organization based in Palo Alto, California. As an anthropologist, she has an overarching interest in how individual and collective choices make the future. Her passion as a forecaster is envisioning futures that inspire people to navigate complex transitions, make resilient communities, and create circumstances in which we all can thrive. She began interning with IFTF in 2003, joined the research staff full time in 2007, and currently serves as a research director working primarily with the Food Futures Lab, Health Horizons program, and Ten-Year Forecast. As a research director, Miriam identifies and evaluates emerging trends and innovations in health and well-being, health care, food, nutrition, and sustainability. She presents forecasts in strategic roadmaps, conferences, panel discussions, and keynote presentations. She also designs group processes that facilitate anticipating the future and making strategic decisions in the present. Her areas of research interest include well-being futures, food futures, human futures, retail and retail alternatives, and participatory foresight and youth leadership. She holds a BA in anthropology from UC Berkeley.
Director of Consumer Insights
KELLY WEIKEL specializes in using her background in psychology to understand the “why” behind consumer decisions. Her focus is on uncovering the underlying consumer needstates and motivations that shape foodservice behaviors and providing insights on consumer attitudes and usage across foodservice products, amenities and brands. Kelly leads Technomic’s Consumer Trend Reports and Access, a series of more than 20 annual studies that keep U.S. and Canadian foodservice professionals up to date on evolving trends in food and beverage categories, restaurant sectors, dining occasions, consumer segments and more. She also works with clients creating multi-sponsored, custom ad-hoc and full-service research solutions and is a frequent speaker at industry seminars and conferences. She holds a BA in psychology from Loyola University Chicago and is currently attending Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management for her MBA with a concentration in marketing and social enterprise.
The New York Timeshttp://www.nytimes.com/ @ssstrom
STEPHANIE STROM is a reporter covering the food and beverage businesses for The New York Times since September 2010. Previously, she had been a national correspondent covering philanthropy for The Times since December 2002, and has worked for the paper since 1988, when she joined as a clerk in the Washington bureau. After serving as a research assistant to A. M. Rosenthal, Stephanie became a general assignment reporter for the metropolitan desk. After covering transit issues briefly, she joined the business desk in 1991 to cover the retail and toy industries and Seventh Avenue. She has never lost her passion for the intersection of fads and fashion with business. In 1996, Stephanie began covering Wall Street and financial services, and after a brief stint in London, agreed to become the business correspondent in The Times’s Tokyo bureau, one of its largest foreign bureaus. She moved to Tokyo in 1997, just in time to cover a major banking crisis, and spent four years writing about everything from the modern world’s first experience with zero-percent interest rates to the first reunion between South Koreans and their loved ones who had been lost to the North during the Korean War. Stephanie returned to New York in the fall of 2001 and after a brief stint covering executive compensation, started covering philanthropy and nonprofits, a newly revived beat for the paper, in March 2002. Born in Dickinson, Tex., Stephanie earned a B.A. degree in political science from Northwestern University in 1985 and a Masters degree in journalism from Columbia University in 1986.
Senior Portfolio Director
As a Ph.D food scientist with over eight years of food design and innovation at IDEO, LAUREN SHIMEK creates breakthrough food and beverage products that tap into people’s umet needs and desires while being grounded in manufacturability. Lauren’s personal passion for food, deep technical expertise and design thinking know-how place her at the innovation intersection of food science and design. As a senior portfolio director at IDEO, Lauren co-leads the Food Studio and has developed product and packaging innovation platforms for Fortune 500 companies as well as emerging start-ups. Prior to IDEO, Lauren worked at General Mills creating breakthrough technologies and products in bakeries and foodservice, baking and meals categories. Lauren holds a Ph.D. degree in food science and a B.S. degree in biochemistry from the University of California, Davis. She is also actively involved with the Institute of Food Technologists.
Vivian Barad, a portfolio director at IDEO, brings over ten years experience in product development and strategy to her work. She helps lead the Food Studio at IDEO and in that role has worked with a broad range of food and beverage clients to help them identify new opportunities to innovate. An industrial designer by training, she loves getting tangible whether to create innovative consumer products, to build a new brand, or to design services and retail environments.
Research Manager, IFTF Food Futures Lab
Institute for the Futurehttp://www.iftf.org/home/ @acommonfeast
REBECCA CHESNEY is a research and special projects manager with the Food Futures Lab at the Institute for the Future, a nonprofit research group in Palo Alto, California. Based in an area known for technology-driven innovation, Rebecca focuses on the human side of change. She connects local organizations, entrepreneurs, academics, chefs, and large food companies with research and resources to help them think creatively about the future of food. Her research ranges from the future of food security and water to local news and community. Rebecca holds an MA in the anthropology of food from SOAS in London. She previously earned her certified public accountant license and was a financial management policy analyst with the World Bank. Culturally curious, Rebecca has lived and worked across the globe, from China to Palestine to Lesotho, and her food photography has been exhibited in London.
CHRISTINE DAY is the CEO at Luvo, a revolutionary frozen food company that offers great tasting, nutritionally-dense fare made from the highest-quality ingredients. Since joining the company in April 2014, Christine has assembled a world-class management team, streamlined operations and distribution, and provided the strategic direction and vision for the company’s growth. Christine brings her executive leadership experience to Luvo from lululemon athletica, where she served as CEO for six years. There, she was responsible for creating and executing the company’s long-term business strategies, directing its continued development and reinforcing its position as a global leader of yoga-inspired athletic apparel. During her tenure the company grew in revenue from $290 million to $1.6 billion and became the most profitable retail apparel company in the world. Prior to her time at lululemon, Christine served in various executive positions at Starbucks over a 20-year period, where she learned the intricacies of high growth business development in a strong cultural company. Her roles, where she helped build a solid innovative company culture at one of the world’s most recognizable brands, included president of its Asia Pacific Group, senior vice president, North American Finance and Administration, and vice president of Sales and Operations for Business Alliances. Christine has been named Fortune Magazine’s top 5 International Most Powerful Women, Canada’s Top 100 Women, and named CEO of the Year, by Globe and Mail and Business in Vancouver. She has her BA degree from Central Washington University and is a graduate of Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management Program.
The New York Timeshttp://www.nytimes.com/ @markoff
JOHN MARKOFF joined The New York Times in March 1988 as a reporter for the business section. He now writes for the science section from San Francisco. Prior to joining the Times, he worked for The San Francisco Examiner from 1985 to 1988. John has written about technology and science since 1977. He covered technology and the defense industry for The Pacific News Service in San Francisco from 1977 to 1981; he was a reporter at Infoworld from 1981 to 1983; he was the West Coast editor for Byte Magazine from 1984 to 1985 and wrote a column on personal computers for The San Jose Mercury from 1983 to 1985. He has also been a lecturer at the University of California at Berkeley School of Journalism and an adjunct faculty member of the Stanford Graduate Program on Journalism. The Times nominated him for a Pulitzer Prize in 1995, 1998, and 2000. The San Francisco Examiner nominated him for a Pulitzer in 1987. In 2005, with a group of Times reporters, he received the Loeb Award for business journalism. In 2007 he shared the Society of American Business Editors and Writers Breaking News award. In 2013 he was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in explanatory reporting as part of a New York Times project on labor and automation. In 2007 he became a member of the International Media Council at the World Economic Forum. Also in 2007, he was named a fellow of the Society of Professional Journalists, the organization’s highest honor. In June of 2010 the New York Times presented him with the Nathaniel Nash Award, which is given annually for foreign and business reporting. He attended graduate school at the University of Oregon and received a masters degree in sociology in 1976. John is the author or co-author of The High Cost of High Tech, Cyberpunk: Outlaws and Hackers on the Computer Frontier, Takedown: The Pursuit and Capture of America’s Most Wanted Computer Outlaw, What the Dormouse Said: How the Sixties Counterculture Shaped the Personal Computer Industry, and most recently, Machines of Loving Grace: The Quest for Common Ground Between Humans and Robots.
Managing Culinary Director
Serious Eatshttp://www.seriouseats.com/ @TheFoodLab
J. KENJI LÓPEZ-ALT is the managing culinary director of Serious Eats, author of the James Beard Award-nominated column The Food Lab, and a columnist for Cooking Light. He lives in San Mateo with his wife Adriana and two dogs, Jamón and Shabu. His first book, The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science, was released September 21 and is already a New York Times Bestseller. At nearly 1,000 pages with over 300 foolproof recipes, it’s a grand tour of the science of cooking explored through popular American dishes, illustrated in full color with thousands of photographs, charts, graphs, and do-at-home experiments.
National Geographichttp://food.nationalgeographic.com/ @kaityarnall
KAITLIN YARNALL is an executive editor at National Geographic and the director of cartography for the National Geographic Society. She leads the teams charged with maps, information graphics, and illustration. She is also the director of National Geographic’s Future of Food initiative (natgeofood.com). She has developed the Society’s editorial vision for food and has been instrumental in establishing partnerships around this critical issue. Kaitlin’s work has been recognized by multiple groups including: the Society for News Design, the American Society of Magazine Editors, NACIS, and Malofiej. She has been at National Geographic for 10 years and has formerly held the titles of deputy creative director, deputy art director, and senior edit cartographer. Kaitlin holds a master’s degree in geography from the George Washington University and a bachelor’s degree from Humboldt State University.
CEO, Chairman, Founder
CHARLES SWEAT serves as CEO, chairman, and founder of Frequentz, an end-to-end global supply chain track and traceability software company that incorporates product integrity and safety into its solution. He is an alumnus of the Stanford University School of Business (SEP) and a former Alumni Board of Directors. Prior to Frequentz, Charles served as CEO of Earthbound Farm. During his 15-year tenure with Earthbound Farm, he was able to grow its business from $10 million to over $540 million in revenues. Early in 2014, he led and completed its sale to WhiteWave Foods, Inc. on behalf of its shareholders, including private equity firm Kainos Capital, for approximately $600 million. Charles has been recognized as a Regional Winner and National Finalist in the 2011 Ernest and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards. On top of his current role at Frequentz, he is a board member of two privately held companies, as well as Global Green USA, a non-profit organization.
Restaurant Consultation & Design
MARK STECH-NOVAK built on more than 15 years of experience in kitchens in Europe and the United States when creating Restaurant Consultation & Design to provide the chef’s eye view of design and development for custom kitchens world-wide. He achieved his national reputation as chef-owner of two San Francisco restaurants: Le St. Tropez and Camargue. Mark completed his apprenticeship in the early 1970s at La Rotonde du Lac in Vichy, France and at the Hôtel du Dauphin in Moulins, making him the first American to complete a culinary apprenticeship in the Auvergne. From there he worked in Champagne, Alsace, and the Pyrenées regions. He was the first American to receive the Diplôme de Technicien d’Œnologie from the Université du Bourgogne, graduating first in his class. His post-graduate work has included microbiology, industrial design, and CAD systems. Since 1985, Restaurant Consultation & Design has created kitchens for Alain Ducasse, Wolfgang Puck, Thomas Keller, Eric Ripert, Michael Tusk, Nathan Myhrvold, Wylie Dufresne, David Chang, and Jean-Georges Vongerichten, as well as for Starwoods, Peninsula, MGM, and Hyatt hotels, resorts and casinos.
Assistant Professor of Media Arts and Sciences
MIT Media Lab
KEVIN SLAVIN is assistant professor of media arts and sciences at the MIT Media Lab. As an entrepreneur, he has successfully integrated digital media, game development, technology, and design. He is a pioneer in rethinking game design and development around new technologies (like GPS) and new platforms (like Facebook). In 2005 he co-founded Area/Code (acquired by Zynga in 2011), where he developed large-scale, real-world games using mobile, pervasive, and location-aware technologies. This included work for major companies, including Nokia, Nike, and Puma, and also for media giants, including MTV, A&E, the Discovery Channel, CBSl, and Disney. He co-founded AFK Labs in 2008, designing next-generation responsive environments, including one for what was then the largest and densest sensor mesh on the planet. Kevin has taught at NYU’s ITP, the Cooper Union, and Fabrica, and has worked as a creative director and strategic planner in advertising agencies, including DDB and TBWA\Chiat\Day. He is currently working on producing a TV show for network broadcast. As an artist, his public, city-scale work has been exhibited in Frankfurt’s Museum für Moderne Kunst and the Design Museum of London. He has been written about in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, WIRED, and Fast Company. He received his BFA from the Cooper Union.
Associate Director; Co-founder
Institute for Systems Biology; Arivalehttps://price.systemsbiology.org/ @isbnathanprice
NATHAN PRICE is the associate director of the Institute for Systems Biology. He is also affiliate faculty in the departments of bioengineering, computer science & engineering, and molecular & cellular biology at the University of Washington. Prior to joining ISB in 2011, he was an assistant professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he maintains adjunct appointments. Nathan has won numerous awards for his work, including an American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellowship, a Howard Temin Pathway to Independence Award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER award, a young investigator award from the Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust, being named as one of the inaugural “Tomorrow’s PIs” by Genome Technology, and, most recently, as a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar. He served on the National Academies-Institute of Medicine (IOM) committee to review omics based tests to predict clinical outcome in clinical trials from 2010-2012. Nathan served on the scientific advisory board of TetraVitae Bioscience until it was acquired by Eastman Chemical in 2011. He now serves on the Scientific Advisory Boards of Trelys, Inc. and the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of the P4 Medicine Institute. He serves on the editorial boards of several scientific journals, including Science Translational Medicine, IEEE Life Science Letters, BMC Systems Biology, Industrial Biotechnology, and Biotechnology Journal, and was previously a deputy editor of PLOS Computational Biology.
MIT Media Lab
NICHOLAS NEGROPONTE is founder and chairman of the One Laptop per Child non-profit association. He is currently on leave from MIT, where he was co-founder and director of the MIT Media Laboratory, and the Jerome B. Wiesner Professor of Media Technology. A graduate of MIT, Nicholas was a pioneer in the field of computer-aided design, and has been a member of the MIT faculty since 1966. Conceived in 1980, the Media Laboratory opened its doors in 1985. He is also author of the 1995 best-seller Being Digital, which has been translated into more than 40 languages. In the private sector, Nicholas serves on the board of directors for Motorola, Inc. and as general partner in a venture capital firm specializing in digital technologies for information and entertainment. He has provided start-up funds for more than 40 companies, including WIRED.
GREGORY MUELLER is a digital farmer who has worked at the cross section of agriculture and computing for the past eight years. Early on, he built a wine and food recommendation engine, and later worked harvests in Italy and Argentina learning organic agriculture and fermentation. In 2012, he managed a 30-acre organic farm in Sebastopol, California, where he built his first bioreactor used to make fertilizer for the farm. Interfacing our newest computing capabilities with biology, he was able to optimize the fermentation, while building a tool that would allow for personalized ferments. Working with the cycle of life so closely was a profound experience, and afterwards he knew he would dedicate his life to this work. He currently is CEO of Sensa.io, a startup developing bioreactors for scientists, chefs, and artisans.
MOLLY MALOOF, MD is a physician entrepreneur working at the intersection of medicine, technology, and wellness. She is a medical advisor to a variety of Silicon Valley technology companies including 3Scan, Kareo, Anonos, and Thync. She is pioneering the use of digital health in her medical practice that is oriented around optimizing health and avoiding disease. She is an advocate of P4 medicine (Personalized, Preventive, Predictive & Participatory) and is the digital health advisor to the Institute of Functional Medicine. As an innovation strategy consultant, she has given her expert opinion on nutrition and human performance to food and beverage companies including Mars, Quaker, RedBull, Sensa.io, SomaWater, and Thistle Juices. Her life’s goal is to maximize human potential by dramatically extending human healthspan through medical technology, educational media and scientific wellness.
State Bird Provisions and The Progresshttp://statebirdsf.com/ @statebirdsf
NICOLE KRASINSKI and Stuart Brioza are the chef-owners of State Bird Provisions and The Progress in San Francisco. Nicole’s pastry skills were first nurtured at the Red Hen Bakery in Chicago under Chef Nancy Carey. Stuart began his cooking career in the 1990s in Chicago at Savarin restaurant. In 2000, Stuart and Nicole were hired to be the executive chef and pastry chef at Tapawingo, in Michigan, where they developed their style of cooking using seasonal and local foods. Stuart was named one of Food & Wine’s 10 Best New Chefs of America 2003 for his technique and commitment to using the best ingredients. In 2004, Stuart and Nicole took over the kitchen at Rubicon in San Francisco and, in less than a year, reestablished the restaurant as a top dining destination in the city. On December 31st, 2011, they opened the award-wining, Michelin-starred State Bird Provisions, which has introduced a new way of thinking about dining and service. Expanding on those ideas, in December 2014, they opened The Progress to critical acclaim. They have received the following recognition and accolades: James Beard Award: Best Chef West 2015, James Beard Foundation Nominee: Best New Restaurant 2015 for The Progress 2015, James Beard Award: Best New Restaurant 2013 for State Bird Provisions, Food & Wine’s Best Chef All-Stars 2013, and Bon Appétit’s Best New Restaurant of 2012.
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byershttp://www.kpcb.com/ @kpcb
RANDY KOMISAR joined Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in 2005 and focuses on the firm’s digital and sustainability practices. Earlier in his career, he was a co-founder of Claris Corp., served as CEO for LucasArts Entertainment and Crystal Dynamics, and acted as a “virtual CEO” for such companies as WebTV and GlobalGiving. Randy also served as CFO of GO Corp. and as senior counsel for Apple Computer, following a private practice in technology law. Randy is a founding director of TiVo and serves on the advisory board of Roadtrip Nation, as well as on the global advisory board for the Institute for Energy Efficiency at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is a lecturer on entrepreneurship at Stanford University and the author of the best-selling book The Monk and the Riddle, as well as several articles on leadership and entrepreneurship. He is also the author of I F**king Love that Company on building love brands and co-author of Getting to Plan B, a book on managing innovation. Randy frequently speaks in the United States and abroad on such topics. Randy holds a B.A. degree in economics from Brown University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.
ANDREW HESSEL is a distinguished research scientist with the bio/nano research group at Autodesk, a leader in 3D design, engineering, and entertainment software. His team focuses on developing tools of computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing to biotechnology and nanotechnology. Skilled at communicating complex information, he is frequently invited to help industry, academics, and authorities better understand the rapid changes happening in life science. Andrew is a 2015 AAAS-Lemelson Invention Ambassador, a fellow at the University of Ottawa, Institute for Science, Society and Policy, and the former co-chair of biotechnology and bioinformatics at Singularity University.
Founder and CEO
Food+Tech Connecthttp://www.foodtechconnect.com/ @@dhgisme
DANIELLE GOULD is the founder and CEO of Food+Tech Connect, the site of record and community for the food tech and innovation sector. She works with companies of all sizes to understand how technology, collaboration and innovative business and investment models can be used to create a food future that’s better for people, profit and the planet. She started Food+Tech Connect in 2009 to help people get the information and connections they need re-engineer the food system. In 2010, she hosted the first food hackathon, and she continues to work with game-changing companies like Applegate, Google, and Chipotle to build a community of innovators tackling big challenges. Most recently, she launched Food+Tech Ed, which offers online and in-person business courses for food entrepreneurs and those looking to advance their career. Danielle regularly speaks and consults on food, technology, and open innovation, including presentations at The G8 Conference on Open Agricultural Data, SXSW, Menus of Change, Expo West and East, The Aspen Institute, Health Datapalooza, Edible Institute, CropLife America National Policy Conference, SOCAP, Internet Week, and Social Media Week. She is a founding member of The Culinary Institute of America’s Sustainable Business Leadership Council, a member of the Google Innovation Lab For Food Experiences, and a mentor for Accel Foods and Food-X. She is also a contributor to Forbes and The Huffington Post. Prior to FTC, Danielle worked on PR and business development at BrightFarm Systems (now BrightFarms).
IBM PhD Fellow
MIT Media Labhttp://charlesfracchia.com/ @@charlesfracchia
CHARLES FRACCHIA is an IBM PhD fellow at the MIT Media Lab in Joe Jacobson’s Molecular Machines group and in the Church lab at the Wyss Institute at Harvard Medical School. He obtained his bachelor’s at Imperial College London, where he worked on a bioelectronic interface between engineered bacteria and electronic sensors. He continued his thesis work at IBM Research, where he has been encouraging research in bioelectronic interfaces ever since. Charles is a founder of BioBright, a company building open source hardware and software tools that he hopes will transform the way biomedical research is carried out. He represents Boston for the Hello Tomorrow challenge (European 100k) and is a founding member of the first US bio-hackerspace. Charles has spoken about his work at many different venues and online including HackADay, White House, MIT Sloan, NASA Ames, IBM Research, and Airbus. True to MIT hacking culture, Charles loves prototyping electronics and programming, and regularly explores fun projects ranging from making reverse geocache boxes to networked sensors of all kinds.
Campbell Freshhttp://www.bolthouse.com/ @@ChiefCarrot
A consumer strategist at heart and an evangelist for values-based leadership, JEFF DUNN has led companies large and small to growth through brand and marketing innovation. Jeff is currently president of Campbell Fresh, a division that includes Bolthouse Farms, Campbell’s retail fresh soup unit, as well as the recently acquired Garden Fresh Gourmet salsa and hummus business. Bolthouse Farms is a California-based, fourth generation health and wellness company that provides consumers with fresh, healthy, food and beverage products. The company is currently North America’s leading grower and supplier of fresh carrots, as well as the leading provider of super-premium juice, smoothies and salad dressings. Jeff’s mastery of marketing innovation was cultivated during two decades at Coca-Cola, where he oversaw all businesses in North and South America. His campaign to encourage Americans to eat baby carrots “like junk food” earned national acclaim, spurring a sustained rise in carrot category consumption. Jeff earned a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Georgia and an MBA in management from Pepperdine. He serves on the board of directors of the Produce Marketing Association and is an advisory board member to the Food Day Initiative for CSPI. In 2010, he was appointed to the board of directors for Herbalife, a leading provider of health and wellness products.
LYNDA DEAKIN, a partner at IDEO, brings over 18 years of experience working with a broad range of food and beverage clients to her work. She is the leader of IDEO’s Food Studio, helping companies and organizations solve their toughest problems and identify opportunities for growth. The Food Studio’s empathic approach enables clients to address people’s unmet desires and aspirations and empowers them to tackle a wide variety of design and innovation challenges—from designing the next $100M product to creating strategic development platforms. Lynda has worked with clients such as ConAgra, Campbell’s, Whitewave Foods, Hershey’s, Anheuser-Busch InBev, and Procter & Gamble. Using brand as the anchor that supports user experience, Lynda brings a creative spark to the projects she directs, helping companies to express their vision and realize their goals.
State Bird Provisions and The Progresshttp://statebirdsf.com/ @statebirdsf
STUART BRIOZA and Nicole Krasinski are the chef-owners of State Bird Provisions and The Progress in San Francisco. Stuart began his cooking career in the 1990s in Chicago at Savarin restaurant. Nicole’s pastry skills were first nurtured at the Red Hen Bakery in Chicago under Chef Nancy Carey. In 2000, Stuart and Nicole were hired to be the executive chef and pastry chef at Tapawingo, in Michigan, where they developed their style of cooking using seasonal and local foods. Stuart was named one of Food & Wine’s 10 Best New Chefs of America 2003 for his technique and commitment to using the best ingredients. In 2004, Stuart and Nicole took over the kitchen at Rubicon in San Francisco and, in less than a year, reestablished the restaurant as a top dining destination in the city. On December 31st, 2011, they opened the award-wining, Michelin-starred State Bird Provisions, which has introduced a new way of thinking about dining and service. Expanding on those ideas, in December 2014, they opened The Progress to critical acclaim. They have received the following recognition and accolades: James Beard Award: Best Chef West 2015, James Beard Foundation Nominee: Best New Restaurant 2015 for The Progress 2015, James Beard Award: Best New Restaurant 2013 for State Bird Provisions, Food & Wine’s Best Chef All-Stars 2013, and Bon Appétit’s Best New Restaurant of 2012.
Director of Sustainable Food Program
As a farmer, educator, advocate, and leader, MARK BOMFORD has spent the last 19 years immersed in the world of sustainable food. He was the founding director for the Centre for Sustainable Food Systems at the University of British Columbia. Prior to UBC, Mark worked in the non-profit sector, starting a number of social food enterprises and a range of international urban agricultural programs. Mark came to Yale three years ago, and as the director for the Yale Sustainable Food Program has launched the new West Campus Urban Farm, the Global Food Fellows program, introduced new food systems study opportunities in the health disciplines, the law school, the school of management, and, of course, at Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Mark is a lecturer in Yale College, where he teaches the residential college seminar Approaches to Sustainable Food and Agriculture, and is a fellow of Berkeley College.
The Culinary Institute of Americahttp://www.ciachef.edu/ @CIAGreystone
PATRICK CLARK is a chef-instructor at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, where he brings strong industry experience in high-end, high-volume dining to his 2007 appointment at the CIA, where he teaches in the college’s degree, certificate, and custom continuing education programs. Patrick comes to the CIA from Sutro’s restaurant in the historic Cliff House in San Francisco, where he won accolades for his farm-fresh, California coastal cuisine. His career has also included time as executive chef for the California Café restaurant group in Palo Alto, CA and the Santa Barbara Grill in Cupertino, CA, both roles allowing him to bring his culinary passion for seasonal, local, and organic foods to the table. As a member of the 1992 Chaîne des Rôtisseurs’ Culinary Team USA, Patrick garnered 26 medals. He is a high honors graduate of the California Culinary Academy and is active in many professional organizations, including the Chefs Association of the Pacific and the American Culinary Federation.
Dean and Executive Director
The Food Business Schoolhttp://foodbusinessschool.org/ @ideagardener
WILLIAM ROSENZWEIG is dean and executive director of The Food Business School. Will has spent his career as an educator, serial entrepreneur, and venture investor. Will was founding CEO of The Republic of Tea, the company that created the premium tea category in the U.S. As an entrepreneur and investor, Will helped grow Odwalla, LeapFrog, Hambrecht Vineyards and Wineries, Winetasting.com and Brand New Brands, a functional food incubator he founded in 2004. In 2007, Will co-founded Physic Ventures, the first venture capital firm supporting early-stage companies in health and sustainability, including Revolution Foods, Pharmaca, Recyclebank, and Yummly. Will is co-author of The Republic of Tea: How an Idea Becomes a Business, named one of the 100 Best Business Books of all time. His work has been profiled in The Wall Street Journal, Sound Money, Business Week, USA Today, and the San Francisco Chronicle. In 2010, Will was honored with the Oslo Business for Peace Award for his accomplishments in the area of ethical business. In 2014, he chaired a US national commission on health promotion and the prevention of chronic disease. A long-‐time faculty member at the Haas School of Business at the University of California Berkeley, Will developed the country’s first MBA courses in social entrepreneurship and social venture development. As dean and executive director of The Food Business School, Will works with industry experts and academic leaders to create experiential educational programs that enable entrepreneurs and innovators to deliver impactful solutions to address the world’s most pressing food challenges—and its greatest business opportunities.
Vice President, Strategic Initiatives and Industry Leadership, CIA; Sacramento, CA
The Culinary Institute of Americahttp://www.ciaprochef.com/ @CIAleadership
Greg Drescher is vice president of strategic initiatives & industry leadership at The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), where he oversees leadership initiatives for the foodservice industry, including conferences, invitational leadership retreats, digital media, and strategic partnerships. He is the creator of the college’s Worlds of Flavor® International Conference & Festival (now in its 18th year); the annual Worlds of Healthy Flavors, and the new Menus of Change initiative, which are presented in partnership with the Harvard School of Public Health; and numerous other CIA “think tank” initiatives. Dubbed the Flavor Hunter by Bon Appétit, Greg was inducted into the James Beard Foundation’s Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America in 2005, was honored with Food Arts’ Silver Spoon Award in 2006, and received two James Beard awards for the CIA’s Savoring the Best of World Flavors DVD and webcast series. In 2008, he was appointed by the President of the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine to its Committee on Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake. Greg previously served on the James Beard Foundation Awards Board, and currently serves on advisory boards for UC Davis’ Agricultural Sustainability Institute and Olive Center. In 2011, he was inducted as a member of the Accademia dei Georgofili, Europe’s oldest agricultural academy.
Culinary Program and Editorial Director, Strategic Initiatives, CIA; North Plainfield, NJ
The Culinary Institute of Americahttp://annemcbride.net @annemcbride
ANNE E. MCBRIDE is the culinary program and editorial director for strategic initiatives at The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), where her responsibilities include leading the programming for the Worlds of Flavor® International Conference & Festival. She co-authored Payard Cookies (to be published in November 2015) and two other cookbooks with famed pastry chef François Payard, as well as Les Petits Macarons: Colorful French Confections to Make at Home, and Culinary Careers: How to Get Your Dream Job in Food. Anne is working towards a PhD in food studies at New York University, where she also teaches and is the director of the Experimental Cuisine Collective, a multidisciplinary working group with more than 2500 members. She regularly writes on topics related to professional and experimental cooking, including contributions to Gastronomica, Food Arts, Plate, Savoring Gotham, the Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America, and Food Cultures of the World. She is a board member of the Association for the Study of Food and Society, the James Beard Foundation Awards, and The Culinary Trust, an advisory council member of the CIA’s newly launched Food Business School, was a two-term board member of the New York Women’s Culinary Alliance, and is a judge for the James Beard cookbook awards. A native of Switzerland, she received a degree in journalism from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
Principal Investigator and Director of the Open Agriculture (OpenAG) Initiative
MIT Media Labhttp://openag.media.mit.edu/ @calebgrowsfood
CALEB HARPER is the principal investigator and director of the Open Agriculture (OpenAG) Initiative at the MIT Media Lab. He leads a diverse group of engineers, architects and scientists in the exploration and development of future food systems. Caleb’s research focuses in the areas of control environment design, actuated sensing, control automation and data-driven resource, energy, and biologic optimization. His group is developing an open-source agricultural hardware, software, and data common with the goal of creating a more agile, transparent, and collaborative food system.
Caleb is a National Geographic explorer and a member of the World Economic Forum (WEF) New Vision for Agriculture Transformation Leaders Network. His work has been featured by TIME, WIRED, The Economist, IEEE, World Urban Forum (WUF), USAID, and TED. Prior to joining the Media Lab in 2011, Caleb worked professionally as an architect designing and developing data centers, health care, and semi-conductor fabrication facilities. Additionally, he has consulted with multiple international development agencies, including USAID, World Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, and the Delhi Development Authority on high-density urban development projects.