We are bringing together some of the top industry leaders and experts from across the world to advise us on the
Women in Food and Agriculture 2020 campaign. They will help us create content that accurately reflects the dynamic state of food and
agriculture today, ensuring that the summit agenda answers your most pressing questions and concerns.
Helene Ziv-Douki is the director for Risk Management and Sourcing (RMS) at Cargill Animal Nutrition (CAN). In this role, Helene leads the trading, merchandising, ingredients analytics, micro and macro sourcing, pricing process and formulation activities across the CAN Enterprise.
Christine Tacon became the UK’s first Groceries Code Adjudicator (GCA) in 2013 and has achieved significant cultural change in the sector, bringing greater fairness for producers supplying the UK’s largest supermarkets.
She has been much praised for her collaborative approach to the role and a government review concluded the GCA was an exemplary model of a modern regulator with an international reputation.
Currently, she also chairs MDS, which trains graduates in the food and fresh produce industry. As a founder of Women in Food and Farming she has supported women develop their skills and confidence through networking and meeting inspirational speakers.
Simone Barg is Vice President for Global Communications at BASF’s Agricultural Solutions division. Joining BASF in 1998, she worked in several international positions in Marketing and Business Management across various industries, such as agriculture, care chemicals, health & nutrition and petrochemicals. Prior to her current role, Simone was responsible for Sales Excellence for BASF’s agricultural business in Asia Pacific and held the position of Digital Officer. She studied International Business Administration and Information Technology at the University of Cooperative Education, Mannheim, Germany, and received her master’s degree in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of South Alabama, United States, in 2003. It is her goal to bring the agricultural business closer to people’s hearts. Simone was leading the communication around the integration of significant businesses and assets acquired from Bayer in 2018 as well as around BASF’s new strategy in agriculture.
After a Master’s degree in Physics, Saskia Korink worked for Fokker Space & Systems (1 yr) and Unilever (3 yrs), and subsequently moved to NY to obtain her MBA from Columbia Business School (CBS). She then worked for almost 7 years for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), both in Amsterdam and Sao Paulo, Brazil, after which she joined Cargill in Brazil, Latin America. Saskia became the BU leader for Cargill Cocoa and Chocolate in 2006 and VP, global marketing director for Cargill Animal Nutrition in 2010 (in the USA). She then joined Genus plc in Basingstoke, UK, as CMO (2013), and became the COO for Genus ABS, the ruminant genetics division (2014). After having worked and lived for close to 20 years abroad (in Latin America, the USA and UK) Saskia came back to the Netherlands and joined Trouw Nutrition, the animal nutrition division of Nutreco, as Global Innovation Director. She is married and has 3 teenage children.
Jane has combined her agricultural and horticultural education with a career in marketing, media and communications.
Jane is actively involved in the international rural leadership community and was the co-founder of the international Rural Youth Project, a youth leadership, enterprise and activism initiative, focused on better understanding and supporting young rural people, aged 18-28, to enact positive change in their communities.
Jane runs a marketing and communications consultancy specialising in agriculture, food and rural affairs; clients include AgriBriefing, Agrovista, BASF plc, Interagro, LEAF, the Oxford Farming Conference, Turriff Show, and Velcourt. She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing as well as a Member of the Chartered Institute of PR. She is also a Fellow of the British Guild of Agricultural Journalists and a Professional Agriculturalist (P.Agric).
Jane is based in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, she on the executive board of the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists, Chair of the IFAJ ‘Vision 2025’ Committee, is a Trustee of LANTRA, the skills and training organisation, and is on the steering committee for LEAF Education and Public Engagement.
She was the first Waitangi Scholar in 1994 (Funded by the New Zealand Dairy Board), an alum of the Windsor Leadership Emerging Leaders’ Programme, the Institute of Agricultural Management Leadership Development Programme, the Scottish Enterprise (SE) Rural Leadership Programme and Scottish Enterprise’s Harvesting the Growth Programme.
Prior to establishing her own business, Jane worked for DiverseyLever, was Marketing Communications Manager for Genus plc (1991-97) and also for Cyanamid (part of American Home Products) from 1997-2001. From 2001-2004, she worked for digital specialists DBT Ltd (now part of Proagrica).
Dr. Jacqueline (Jackie) Applegate serves as President of Global Vegetable Seeds and Environmental Science for the Crop Science division of Bayer. Based in St. Louis, she leads operations, strategic planning and product development for both of these key global business units.
Jackie’s career at Bayer began in 1992, and since, she has held leadership positions all over the world. Most recently, Jackie has served as Bayer’s President of Environmental Science (ES), a position she’s held since 2015, and as the Culture and Change Management Lead for the Bayer/Monsanto integration. Immediately before her role leading ES, she served as the Senior Bayer Representative (SBR) for Australia and New Zealand. Her previous positions at Bayer include President of Environmental Science North America, Vice President of Environmental Science Consumer Products, and Head of Global Project Management. Jackie graduated with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Wright State University, earned her master’s degree from Rockhurst College and holds a doctorate degree in organic chemistry from Iowa State University. She has served on the board of multiple philanthropic, community and business organizations, and enjoys traveling and spending time with her son, Matthew.
In March 2017, Jacqueline was appointed Global Head of Banking for Food Inspiration Centre. Banking for Food Inspiration Centre contains Rabobank F&A Research, Education, Partnership and Innovation aiming to strengthen our position as Leading Global F&A Bank and contributing to our clients, partners and colleagues in our mission to feed the world sustainably. Our Banking for Food strategy underpins the importance for Rabobank to provide to its F&A clients across the globe access to knowledge, networks, and finance.
Jacqueline has 25 years experience in banking. She joined Rabobank in 1992 as a management trainee and has since worked in various departments—including Mergers & Acquisitions, Corporate Banking, Equity Capital Markets, and Trade Finance. Prior to her current role, she was Head of Global F&A Sector Banking responsible with her team for positioning and driving transactions and innovative activities of our wholesale clients within the different F&A sectors globally.
She holds a Master of Science degree in Agricultural Logistics and Marketing from Wageningen University, and has received executive management training at the Harvard Business School and the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Kathleen O. Mathisen has a long experience in the International Offshore Oil and Gas Industry. She has worked with HR for more than 18 years, resulting in a broad and extensive experience within the field of HR. Kathleen O. Mathisen’s core skills include organizational development and transformation processes, and she has several years of proactive, results-oriented, diversified corporate experience with an emphasis in human resources.
She has a number of management courses from UIB, BI and NHH and is presently in the process of taking an MBA in Leadership and Sustainability at the University of Cumbria in UK.
In December 2013 she was awarded “Sunnivaprisen”, named after Bergen’s patron St. Sunniva.”
The criteria for the Sunniva Award is that it`s given to a female leader that is on her way up in her career.
Geeta Sethi is the Advisor and Global Lead for Food Systems at the World Bank. She is managing the World Bank’s program on Food Loss and Waste Reduction. She has more than 20 years of experience working as an economist on fragile, low-, and middle- income countries. Her work has focused on issues of rural development, service delivery and intergovernmental fiscal policies in around the world. She has delivered many lending programs to the World Bank Board and published books and articles in referred journals on issues relating to rural labor markets, trade policy and fiscal decentralization. Previously, she was the Chief of Staff to the Climate Change Vice President and Special Envoy, the Operations and Strategy Manger for Climate Change, and worked as the Program Manager for the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program. She has an MBA and PhD in Economics.
Susanne is the President of the Crop Protection Business Platform for Corteva AgriscienceTM. Previously, she was the Vice President of Commercial Effectiveness. Prior to being named VP, Susanne was the U.S. Commercial Leader of the Crop Protection Business of Dow AgroSciences. She was previously a Global Business Leader for the Range & Pasture and Industrial Vegetation Management herbicide business and a Global Business Leader for the Seeds and Traits business focused on licensing of Dow AgroSciences’ Bt library, and M&A activities for seeds in Asia. She has held several other roles in marketing, sales and finance in her 30-year career
Vesselina Shaleva Daswani is Deputy General Counsel at Bunge for Europe & Asia. She joined Bunge in 2005 as legal counsel of Bunge Europe. Prior to that, she worked as an associate at DGKV, a Bulgarian law firm, as well as for the Bulgarian Ministry of Justice.
Vesselina graduated from the Law faculty of Sofia University in 1998. She is a Fulbright scholar and holds a LL.M. in International Legal Studies from Georgetown University Law Center in Washington DC, in 2002. In 2004, she pursued specialization Law studies under the European Young Lawyers Scheme, London. Vesselina is a qualified English attorney.
Since she started her career at Bunge, Vesselina has played a key role in advising legal and corporate development across the company businesses in Europe and Asia.
Claudia Roessle is Director Agriculture in Microsoft Azure Global Engineering group. She is responsible for developing strategic partnerships around digital innovation and ag tech solutions within the agriculture ecosystem. She drives Agtech innovation that helps increase productivity in a sustainable manner leveraging technology such as AI, IoT, and blockchain. Claudia Roessle joined Microsoft in 1992 in Germany. She held several international roles with focus on Business Development, Sales & Marketing, Partner and Industry.
Peggy Gulick serves as AGCO’s Director of Digital Transformation, Global Manufacturing. She has over 20 years of experience in the consumer products and manufacturing industry. Ms. Gulick joined AGCO as a plant leader for AGCO’s Production Systems (Lean) and Information Technology teams and strategies.
She was recently promoted to lead the global organization through business partnered initiatives to continuously improve productivity, quality, safety and cost.
AWDT Founder, Researcher, Farmer, Director, Thought Leader, and ardent supporter of women. She is a visionary leader who has followed her heart-unafraid to tackle challengers and is driven to make a difference to the NZ Primary Industry.
Creating the Agri Women’s development Trust has led to a transformation in NZ’s food and agricultural sector through unleashing the talent of women.
Her personal philosophy around diversity and inclusion is “leave no one behind” She has led the design and implementation of leading edge leadership and governance programmes where 65% of women now have C suite and governance roles they did not have before to creating programs for women food producers and recently indigenous women.
She believes women hold the key to supporting and leading much of the change that needs to happen globally, and is active around the world supporting women’s empowerment.
In 2017 with friend Theresa Gutting they created Worldwomen17 a three-day event which brought renowned international speakers to a 480-strong urban and rural audience.
In 2018 she travelled to PNG to address APEC on empowering women in agriculture. As well as offering strategic advice to the Scottish Government as they develop a strategy for Agri women.
Her work in the agri sector and with women allows her to influencing main stream media from women’s magazines to supporting Television- connecting the stories of women food producers to their consumers.
She is a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to agriculture and women, 2013 Next Business Woman of the Year and named by Primary Magazine as one of the top ten women in agriculture.
Lindy is a regular columnist and tackles tricky sector topics, doing so with humor and honesty.
Her team describe her as inspiring, though provoking, persistently determined, high energy and fun to have around.
Dr. Mark Lyons grew up in the Alltech business, having traveled with his father and Alltech’s founder, Dr. Pearse Lyons, from a young age to visit customers. With experience working in all regions and nearly all departments — from palletizing bags in production to researching in the lab — he has a deep and uniquely personal knowledge of the company.
He has spearheaded many critical projects, including simultaneously managing a biorefinery project in Kentucky, the establishment of a plant in Serbia and the creation of Alltech’s flagship yeast production facility in São Pedro, Brazil. He also spent nearly four years in Mexico rebuilding the company’s solid state fermentation plant in Serdan, which is one of the largest of its kind in the world.
In 2012, Dr. Lyons relocated to China, the world’s largest feed market, as part of Alltech’s focus on the Asia-Pacific region. Living in Beijing and travelling throughout the country, he led the Alltech China office and focused on building bridges between China and the wider industry through research, education and strategic initiatives.
Under his leadership as director of North America from 2009 to 2011, Alltech expanded its presence with the opening of new offices and a growing involvement in all agricultural sectors. Today, Dr. Lyons is based at Alltech’s headquarters in Kentucky.
He has served as a board member of the American Feed Industry Association and is active in many industry groups, such as the International Poultry Council, the National Turkey Federation, the National Chicken Council and the National Pork Producers Council. He is also vice president of the Soil and Fertilizer Alliance of China and is a committee member of the China Toxicology Association. He is proud to be the only foreign member welcomed to China’s Feed Industry Golf Group, which represents more feed tonnage than all of Brazil.
Dr. Lyons has published papers and patents in areas ranging from enzyme production to global economics and is interested in the assurance of food safety and quality throughout the entire food chain. Recently, he was named as one of “The top 50 Irish business men and women in the BRIC countries” and “40 Under 40” leaders in agriculture by Vance Publishing Corporation.
He received his bachelor’s degree in political science and environmental science in 1999 from the University of Chicago. He received his master’s degree in brewing and distilling in 2001, followed by a Ph.D. in the area of solid state fermentation, at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh. Dr. Lyons is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese, French and German, and he has a working knowledge of Mandarin.
Anna Jones is a freelance journalist, broadcaster, farmer’s daughter and Nuffield Farming Scholar. S
he is a regular reporter/presenter on BBC Radio 4’s Farming Today and travels all over the world reporting on agriculture, recently presenting a four-part documentary series for the BBC World Service and reporting for The Guardian newspaper on water quality in the American Midwest. Anna covered rural affairs at the BBC for 12 years as a producer/director on BBC One’s Countryfile.
Her career took an unexpected turn after completing her Nuffield Farming Scholarship, which looked at how the media portrays farming and country life to the public. Her research revealed a deep disconnect between the metropolitan mainstream media and a distrustful and defensive farming industry. It made Anna determined to motivate farmers to step up and share their stories.
She left the BBC in 2018 to set up Just Farmers, a communications project aimed at connecting journalists and programme makers with independent, authentic voices at the grassroots of farming.
Kate has added her unique brand of knowledgable commentary to hundreds of interviews & documentaries for BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5, Sky News and Radio channels BBC 2, BBC 4, BBC 5 Live and commercial stations. She has also presented & provided expertise for leading consumer shows Rip Off Britain (BBC 1) What Britain Bought (Channel 4) Battlefront (Channel 4) and Inside Out (BBC 1) as well as being the consumer champion for hit ITV 1 consumer show – Eat Shop Save. Kate was honoured with an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2018, and was the recipient of the Prime Ministers Point of Light Award. She has been celebrated with 26 National & International commerce awards including Business Woman of the Year, Inspiration Award and Influencer of the Year.
Tanya Kopps, CEO of Metro Italia since July 2018, comes from a brilliant international career. She is American, from Chicago, and develops her professional career in Europe within the METRO group. She is married to a German man, for whom she moved to Europe. Before arriving in Italy, he lived in six countries, again for METRO: Germany, Romania, the United Kingdom, Hungary, Spain and Portugal, working mainly in the financial area. She was named CFO in MAKRO Spain in 2010, to which she soon added responsibility for Portugal, where she became CEO in 2015.
Tanya is the first female CEO in Italy and this is a signal that further underlines how important diversity is for METRO. The “Diversity” is a theme very dear to Tanya, which since 2015 also plays a role within the organization LEAD, which leads the Top Managers of retail companies and FMCG in Europe, in enhancing Diversity, with the goal of sharing these practices not only in METRO, but in the entire trade and industry sector.