Speakers

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Russell Taylor
Vice President
Live Earth Products Inc.
Russell Taylor is the Vice President of Live Earth Products Inc. and the President of the Humic Products Trade Association. Mr. Taylor has spent 20 years in the mining, extraction, and marketing of humic acid based products. Areas of experience with the humic isolates include: agriculture, turf management, organic fertilizers, animal feeds, and soil reclamation. His knowledge of humic acid processing and isolation put his company on the forefront of the humic acid manufacturing industry. He is a Certified Crop Advisor and raises organic beef for a hobby.
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Nick Young
Supervising Special Investigator
California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA)
Nick Young is the Supervising Special Investigator for the California Department of Food & Agriculture's Fertilizing Materials Inspection Program. Nick has been with CDFA for ten years and was instrumental in the development of the inspection protocol for their Organic Input Material Program implemented worldwide. His role involves education and outreach, as well as regulatory enforcement of fertilizing materials. Nick currently serves of the Board of Directors of Association of American Plant Food Control Officials. Nick has a degree in Plant Science from California State Polytechnic University Pomona, where he also taught as an adjunct professor, as well as a degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Nick lives in Orange County, California with his wife, seven year-old daughter, and two year-old son.
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Jane Fife
Chief Science Officer
3Bar Biologics
Jane Fife joined 3Bar Biologics as Chief Science Officer in 2016, where she leads R&D and new product development to improve bioformulation and delivery of beneficial microbes for more effective plant growth and biological disease control. 3Bar Biologics is an early stage startup spinout of The Ohio State University dedicated to improving yield and productivity in agriculture. Prior to 3Bar Biologics, Jane managed technology development in agribusiness at Battelle Memorial Institute. Jane has a PhD in Agricultural Engineering from The Ohio State University, with research interests in applying innovative technologies for more targeted delivery of agricultural inputs and smarter, more sustainable agricultural production.
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Christopher Perrella
Analyst — Chemical Equity
Bloomberg Intelligence
Christopher Perrella is an analyst for Bloomberg Intelligence, a unique research platform that provides context on industries, companies, government policy, litigation and the economy, available on the Bloomberg Professional service at BI . Mr. Perrella specializes in chemical end markets and companies including paints and coatings, agricultural chemicals, industrial gases, alternative energy, and diversified chemical companies. Prior to joining Bloomberg Intelligence, Mr. Perrella was a junior analyst on an Institutional Investor Ranked U.S. Chemicals research team at Bank of America Merrill Lynch from 2009 through 2014. Before his experience at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Mr. Perrella worked as a junior on a Shipping and Transportation team during 2008. Mr. Perrella earned a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Bucknell University. He then went on to complete his Master of Business in finance from Michigan State University. He is certified in FINRA Series 7, 63, 86/87.
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Dr. Carlos Monreal
Research Scientist
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Dr. Carlos M. Monreal received his undergraduate degree in Agricultural Engineering in Chile. He completed postgraduate studies in Canada, earning his Master of Science in Soil Fertility and a Ph.D. in Soil Biochemistry and Microbiology from the University of Alberta. He was a recipient of the Canadian Wheat Board Fellowship, and has received awards from farm producer organizations, and the federal Government such as Environment Canada and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC).

Dr. Monreal began his professional career in 1984 working for AAFC. In 1990, he joined the Research Branch of AAFC working as a Soil Microbiologist. He has published > 100 scientific articles and Book Chapters. As a Research Scientist, he has focused his work on biochemical transformations of soil organic matter. At present, his main research interest is to understand the interactions between roots and soil microorganisms in relation to nutrient cycling dynamics. At present he leads a multidisciplinary team of scientists focused on the development of Intelligent NanoFertilizers to increase nitrogen use efficiency by wheat and canola.
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Jeff Ivan
Managing Director International Sales
AGI – Yargus
Jeff Ivan is the Managing Director - International Sales with AGI – Yargus within the AGI Fertilizer Systems Group. Jeff Ivan has spent 30 years in the Agricultural field, most recently with Yargus working on International Fertilizer projects in developing agricultural regions. Prior to Yargus, Jeff worked with Tiger-Sul Products on the development of International Sulphur and micronutrients business development and marketing establishing new Sulphur fertilizer manufacturing facilities. Jeff started his career in the retail fertilizer sector in Canada. Jeff originates from a family farm in Saskatchewan, Canada. Jeff has been involved in several committees such as the Fertilizer Canada’s Agronomy and Environment Committee, The Sulphur Institute’s Sulphur Advocacy Group, acting as lead for the development of sulphur fertilizers in India and is active with the IFA African Forum for the development of fertilizer in Africa.

Yargus is part of the Ag Growth International Group (AGI) consisting of 28 individual companies with 33 leading brands focusing on material handling equipment for the grain and fertilizer industries. AGI’s Yargus is a world leading manufacturer of material handling and blending equipment with equipment installation in all agricultural regions around the world. The AGI Fertilizer Systems produces one of the largest ranges of handling, blending and coating systems and establishes projects from 6 Tons per hour to over 600 TPH capacities.
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Chris Underwood
Director of R&D and Formulation Services
Hocking International Laboratories
Dr. Chris Underwood received his BS in Chemistry from the University of Central Florida in 2006 specializing in natural product derivation and synthesis. He then attended Clemson University and received both his MS in Chemistry in 2010 (specializing in bioinorganic chemistry) and his PhD in Chemistry in 2013 (specializing in crystal growth and synthesis).

Chris then worked for AgroLiquid from 2013-2018 as their Product Development Manager, where he oversaw all QA/QC measures at their manufacturing facilities, as well as created over 30 different experimental products and oversaw their development, including the PrimAgro line that includes biologicals into liquid fertilizer products.

Chris then joined Hocking International Laboratories in May 2018 as the Director of R&D and Formulation Services, where he oversees all QA/QC measures at their manufacturing facilities, as well as oversees all research and development for the company.
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Travis Bayer
Co-founder and CTO
Sound Agriculture
Travis Bayer is the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Sound Agriculture. Sound uses a drug discovery approach to create climate resilient crops, enhancing harvest yields for growers and building a sustainable future for agriculture. Prior to Sound, Travis was an Associate Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Oxford, where his research group focused on synthetic biology and metabolic engineering. Travis was awarded the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council ‘Innovator of the Year’ award in 2015 for his work on improving crop production in sub-Saharan Africa.
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Jon Leman
Commercial Vice President
Italpollina USA, Inc.
Jon Leman is the Commercial Vice President for Italpollina USA, Inc. In December of 2013, he opened the North American market to the Italpollina brand of products. Since that time, he has helped to solidify the company’s global leadership position by leading an impressive year-over-year growth in sales via a widespread sales and distribution network. Additionally, he has overseen the opening of what is now one of the world’s largest production facilities of 100% vegetal-based biostimulants for use in agriculture. Jon knows very well how to drive sales, and he believes that in addition to a solid vision, it takes great relationships, providing the right product for the need, and having a passion for the purpose. Helping today’s farmers overcome the complex challenges of food production with innovative solutions that are more natural is inspiring to him.

Jon is an agribusiness professional who has spent 25 years identifying new product opportunities for the sector, driving new product development, and getting large scale distribution to the fields. Much of that time was as National Marketing and Sales Manager, Branded Products with agribusiness giant, Wilbur Ellis Company. Jon attended Franklin College and is a graduate the University of Virginia Darden School of Business’ Executive Program for Strategic Marketing.
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Richard Kamolvathin
CEO & Chief Science Officer
GroGenesis
Richard Kamolvathin has been working in agriculture for the past twenty years with an emphasis on sustainable farming practices. From June 2006 through January 2011, Mr. Kamolvathin was a non-GMO and Organic sustainable agriculture field advisor for the Rice Bank Foundation that provided organic solutions to indigenous farmers emerging from poverty. Mr. Kamolvathin served in various positions at Verity Corp., parent company of Verity Farms--a sustainable agriculture enterprise focused on providing growers with solutions that enhanced soil health and improved crop yields,--eventually rising to CEO and Chairman of the Board. He formulated AgraBurstPRO to complement all fertilizers and other inputs as a more efficient delivery system to plants. Mr. Kamolvathin is a resident of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, a Charter President of Kiwanis, a Regents Private Advisory Board Chair of Vistage International and a board advisor to various public and private companies. Educated at Western University New York, he earned a Master of Science degree in Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from New York Business School. Mr. Kamolvathin also holds a number of physics-based U.S. patents.
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Dale Edgington
Purchasing & Production Manager
Advanced Micronutrient Products
Dale Edgington gained his BS degree in Agricultural Economics from Michigan State University and began his career in the fertilizer industry in 1985. The first half of his career was spent in retail operations, marketing fertilizers, pesticides, seeds and related services to farmers in Michigan.

In 2003, Dale transitioned to the micronutrient fertilizer manufacturing business where he has been ever since. Responsibilities include purchasing and formulating various fertilizer products with the elements nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium, calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper, boron, iron and zinc. The business was owned by Agrium, U.S. Inc. until April of 2015 when it was sold to another long standing micronutrient manufacturer, Cameron Chemicals from the state of Virginia.
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