Bruce oversees all aspects of GFI’s strategy and operations, working with directors and staff to ensure that GFI is maximally efficient and effective at implementing programs that deliver mission-focused results. Bruce graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown Law and Phi Beta Kappa from Grinnell College and also holds degrees from Johns Hopkins University and the London School of Economics. Bruce is a TED Fellow, Y Combinator alum, and popular speaker on food innovation; he has delivered two TEDx talks (e.g., here) and presentations at most of the nation's top universities, including Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, and MIT. Bruce has co-authored two books, contributed chapters to five books, and authored seven law review articles.
Jessica oversees GFI’s team of lawyers and lobbyists, who are focused on securing funds for plant-based and clean meat research and development and on ensuring a level statutory and regulatory playing field for plant-based and clean meat. She came to The Good Food Institute from the Center for Science in the Public Interest, where she served as Deputy Director of Nutrition Policy. Before working for CSPI, she worked for the D.C.-based law firm Meyer Glitzenstein & Crystal. She holds a J.D. from New York University School of Law and an M.S. in Animals and Public Policy from Tufts University. She is a member of the bar in New York and Washington, D.C.
Alison leads our corporate engagement team in their work with leading food processing and foodservice companies, supermarkets, and restaurants to help increase the quality and quantity of plant-based products available on the market. Alison brings more than two decades of advertising, marketing, and sales experience to GFI working with brands including Taco Bell, Levi Strauss, Gap, Kiplinger’s, and Parents magazine. For the last 17 years, she has developed affiliate programs and ad networks for clients that include General Mills, BET, and Gourmet Ads. Alison works with restaurants, grocery stores, food service, and food processing companies to diversify their protein offerings. She is a graduate of Wellesley College.
David oversees GFI’s team of scientists, combining his background in plant biology and regenerative medicine to help companies and academic research institutions accelerate the development of plant-based and clean meat alternatives to animal products. David holds a bachelor's degree in biology from the University of California at Berkeley and a Ph.D. in plant developmental cell biology from Utrecht University. He has more than fifteen years' experience in the life science industry, including the product development, market development and commercialization of cells, scaffolds, cell reprogramming tools and cell culture media for regenerative medicine and bioprocessing applications.
Nicole oversees our operations in China, India, Israel, Brazil and around the world, working to bring GFI’s efforts worldwide and plant seeds for the good food movement around the globe. Nicole has a B.S. in international affairs from Georgetown School of Foreign Service. After earning a law degree from Northwestern University School of Law, she spent eight years at an international law firm advising Fortune 500 companies and executives on white collar and securities issues. Nicole left the law firm to work with animal protection nonprofits in both litigation and governance. She has also served on the board of directors of six nonprofits and fostered almost 300 animals.
Brad guides our innovation team as they support the development and growth of startups in the plant-based and clean meat market sectors. Brad has thirty years of experience bringing innovative products and ideas to market in a wide variety of industries, including pharmaceuticals, personal care products, ergonomic devices, and food. While he has worked with major brands like Walgreens, Kraft, and Jergens, his most recent work has focused on helping start-ups, small businesses, and nonprofits strategically out-innovate their larger rivals. Brad has a B.A. in economics and a B.S. in chemical engineering from Northwestern University and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
Annie leads GFI’s team of passionate and creative communicators. She brings more than 20 years of strategic communications, public relations, and marketing experience to her role -- including time at a nonprofit, in the private sector, and at multiple Fortune 500 companies. Annie’s path to GFI started when she discovered the transformative power of capital markets through her work at Calvert Investments, a pioneering sustainable investment firm, and crystallized after managing public relations for Whole Foods Market in the mid-Atlantic region. Annie earned a master’s in Strategic Public Relations from The George Washington University and has a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Reannon supports GFI’s mission to create a healthy, humane, and sustainable food supply by keeping our work organized and efficient and providing programmatic support across the organization. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Reannon has more than a decade of nonprofit management experience working primarily to reform animal agriculture. She is also the founder of Generation Veggie, an online community that supports plant-based families by providing resources on how to raise plant-based kids.
Amy earned her B.A. in economics from the University of California, Davis, and her law degree from the University of California, Hastings. After law school, she clerked for the Hon. Philip M. Pro of the U.S. District Court in Las Vegas. She then worked for four years at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission before moving on to a variety of in-house legal positions addressing finance, compliance, corporate governance, and regulatory issues at for-profit corporations, institutes of higher education, and nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining GFI, she spent five years as Deputy General Counsel and then General Counsel of a large manufacturing trade association in the Washington, D.C. area.
Clare brings more than two decades of fund development, community relations, program management, and leadership experience to GFI, first in the private sector and then in the nonprofit field. Focused on securing transformational gifts and grants, Clare has developed philanthropic support for a major medical center and teaching hospital, companion animal shelters, a wildlife rehabilitation center and hospital, and the United States’ leading farmed animal protection group before joining the team at GFI.
Varun lives in Mumbai, India and studied at Carnegie Mellon University. He brings experience in healthcare, entrepreneurship, technology, venture capitalism, and knowledge of India's plant-based market to expand GFI’s operations in India. Varun also invests in and serves on the board of a number of Asian technology companies and is assisting them with entering the Indian market. He is also working on establishing an Effective Altruism Foundation in India.
Gustavo lives and works in São Paulo, Brazil and is focused on developing and promoting Brazil's plant-based food industry. He has experience as a start-up strategist and is involved in the Brazilian entrepreneurship community. Gustavo worked with the Whirlpool Corporation for seven years, and he has a background in project management, product development, and marketing. He holds a bachelors degree in Business from Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo.
Elaine is working to build and grow a good food ecosystem in the Asia Pacific region. She spent more than ten years as a solicitor in Hong Kong at international law firms and financial institutions. Elaine then left the conventional workplace to immerse herself in social entrepreneurial pursuits and the startup world. Elaine has an LLB Laws degree from King’s College London, a Master of Science in Entrepreneurship from Foster School of Business, University of Washington, and currently pursuing a Master of Science in International Animal Welfare Policies & Laws at the University of Edinburgh.
Or brings more than two decades of partnership development, program and people management and leadership experience to GFI, in both business and non-profit sectors. She holds a BSc in Industrial Engineering, a BA in Life Sciences, and an MBA majoring in finance and marketing and is also a graduate of the Institute of Humane Education. Or is focused on creating a dynamic ecosystem for research, innovation and commercialization of plant-based and clean- alternatives to animal products and making Israel a global leader in this space.
Felipe is a Systems Analyst focused in data science, committed to using technology and data to make the world a better place. He studied at the Federal Technology University of Paraná and at the University of Toronto. At GFI, he focuses on developing the plant-based market in Brazil by assisting GFI's partners with research into promising alternative proteins.
Liz holds a bachelor’s degree in chemical and biomolecular engineering from Johns Hopkins University, a doctorate in biological sciences from the University of California, San Diego, and postdoctoral research experience from the University of Colorado Boulder. Liz is a Fellow with the University of Colorado at Boulder Sustainability Innovation Lab. She has a decade of academic research experience in synthetic biology, recombinant protein expression, and development of genetic engineering tools. Liz works to identify and address areas of need for plant-based and clean meat innovation and encourages funding agencies to prioritize research that moves this field forward.
MJ applies her background in plant protein and food science R&D, technical sales, and project management in b2b and b2c industry settings to help companies and academic research groups identify barriers and solutions during plant and cell-based meat, egg, and dairy product development. MJ holds a bachelor’s degree in food science and human nutrition from the University of Florida.
Erin earned a bachelor's degree in chemistry from DePauw University before going on to obtain a Master’s in Public Health in epidemiology from the University of Michigan and a Ph.D. in genetics from Duke University. She has ten years of research experience focused on a variety of topics, including molecular biology, nutrition, poverty, and social disparity. Erin seeks out funding opportunities for plant-based and clean agriculture research, and she is also working to establish a dedicated plant-based and clean food lab at a top research university in the United States.
Allison Berke received her Ph.D. in Bioengineering from UC Berkeley, B.S. degrees in math and biology from MIT, and previously worked in biomedical- and security-focused consulting with McKinsey & Co. She has experience managing research, education, and outreach activities as the Executive Director of the Stanford Cyber Initiative and teaches CS181 at Stanford (Computers, Ethics, and Public Policy). At GFI, Allison advises academic research and education initiatives related to clean meat and plant-based meat alternatives.
Elliot holds a bachelor's degree in behavioral neuroscience from Lehigh University and a Ph.D. in neuroscience from UCLA. He has experience utilizing induced pluripotent stem cells for modeling neuromuscular disease as well as consulting with Verge Genomics in drug discovery for neurodegenerative disease. Elliot's work at GFI leverages these skills to educate the public, assist start-ups in clean meat development, increase the activity of clean meat and plant-based meat research, and expand awareness of the career opportunities in these fields.
Sanah brings both federal and local government-related expertise to her role at GFI, where she supports the executive director in implementing the organization's strategic goals. She previously served as a program director for the National Association of Counties, where she managed more than a dozen grant-funded programs that increased local governments' capacity for resilience and economic development planning. Prior to that, she served as an advisor to the Secretary of Agriculture on place-based and rural infrastructure investments as well as the Department's response to the opioid epidemic. Sanah holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Virginia and is a native of the Washington, D.C. area.
Elizabeth works on global and domestic regulatory issues affecting clean meat and plant-based food entrepreneurs. She was previously a partner in a financial regulatory practice at the law firm of WilmerHale LLP. She holds a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School and an M.P.H. with a Certificate in Food Systems from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is a member of the bar in New York, Washington, D.C., and California.
Ken leads GFI’s legislative efforts, working to level the playing field for clean and plant-based meat, dairy, and eggs. He previously led budget advocacy at InterAction, the 180-strong association of international development nonprofits and did legislative work for Senators Dick Durbin and Bob Kerrey. Ken holds a Ph.D. in Government from Cornell University, and a B.S. in Applied Math, Engineering, and Physics from the University of Wisconsin - Madison.
Elan works on U.S. regulatory issues affecting clean meat to help ensure it has a fair and predictable path to market. He was previously a Farmed Animal Law and Policy Fellow at Harvard Law School's Animal Law and Policy Program, where his research focused on regulatory challenges to cellular agriculture, and a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Urban Studies Department at Queens College, City University of New York. He holds a J.D. from Berkeley Law School at the University of California, and an M.Phil. and Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology from the Graduate Center of CUNY. He has authored multiple articles and book chapters as well as a forthcoming book based on his dissertation research on animal sanctuaries.
Nicole works on plant-based regulatory issues and manages GFI's Freedom of Information Act requests. She is a graduate from Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University. During school, she worked as a law clerk at a small law office and completed several internships, giving her experience in various areas. Most relevant to her position now, Nicole was a food policy intern for Representative Chellie Pingree and a legal intern with GFI’s Policy Department.
At GFI, Keri’s research advances the plant-based and clean meat market sectors by generating effective messaging that helps consumers make healthy, humane, and sustainable food choices. She is also a Visiting Scholar with the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Arizona State University (ASU). Keri earned her Ph.D. in Communication from ASU’s Hugh Downs School of Human Communication and completed postdoctoral work in Science Communication with ASU’s School for the Future of Innovation in Society.
A public health professional with an academic background in tissue engineering research, Brianna most recently worked at Booz Allen Hamilton as a senior consultant on a variety of health care projects. She holds a Masters of Public Health from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University and a B.S. in Biological Sciences from Cornell University. Brianna's work at GFI is focused on launching new plant-based and clean meat companies and helping start-ups be as successful as possible.
Michael is focused on driving and measuring strategic alignment across GFI. He is experienced in driving large-scale programs in the tech industry, leveraging skills in both software engineering and behavioral science. Michael has worked to deliver global energy efficiency programs at Opower and most recently helped to foster rapid growth in the Maps contributor community at Google. He holds a B.S. in Biology and Society from Cornell University.
Tessa has two years of experience in the plant-based and animal welfare sector, and previously worked with GFI as Consumer Research Fellow. She is pursuing her Master's Degree in Health and Strategic Communication from Chapman University, and is excited to use her social science research skills to support GFI's research on effective consumer messaging to promote both plant-based meat and clean meat.
Shannon brings experience from both the nonprofit and for-profit sectors to GFI, where she is focused on helping startups excel in the plant-based and clean meat space. Her previous work includes launching and growing a social impact startup and on-site management for one of Rice University's global health projects that spanned several developing countries. Shannon holds a B.S. in biomedical engineering from Boston University.
At GFI, Emma manages projects to catalyze corporate innovation that will radically transform the food system. She has previously worked in strategy, marketing, and communications in the design industry as well as the health education and access sector. Emma also has a background in the TED community, founding and curating regional TEDx events and helping thinkers hone their ideas worth spreading. She holds a BA in English with a concentration in Creative Writing from Cornell University.
Caroline works with leading manufacturers and retailers to increase the quality, quantity, and availability of plant-based products. She also advises on marketing and merchandising best practices for the plant-based foods industry. Caroline most recently served as the Director of Marketing for Celestial Seasonings and has held positions in brand management, finance, and consulting. She graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder with a B.S. in business administration and finance.
Melissa inspires and grows GFI’s online audience through strategic social media management and other digital marketing initiatives. She holds a B.S. in Communications from Boston University and spent 4 years working in marketing at Focus Pointe Global before graduating with a Master’s in Food Systems from NYU's School of Nutrition and Food Studies. While in graduate school, she worked for an independent research organization that evaluates the social and environmental impact of food produced domestically and abroad and taught nutrition education classes as a volunteer with City Harvest.
Matt has graduate degrees in engineering and public policy from Carnegie Mellon University and in forest ecology from the University of Illinois—Urbana-Champaign, which he earned during his tenure as a Department of Energy Global Change Fellow. Prior to grad school, he was an engineer at Booz Allen Hamilton and Pratt & Whitney. Matt left CMU’s Ph.D. program in environmental engineering to pursue advocacy full-time, and he went on to found two nonprofit organizations and to work for and advise several others. Matt has spoken on environmental and animal issues around the world and has written two books.
Rose is a classically trained designer with experience maintaining brand and evolving design, setting up and running in-house studios, and collaborating with teams, stakeholders, and vendors to bring ideas and strategies to life. She is passionate about GFI's mission to change the world by transforming animal agriculture, and she develops graphic designs and creative materials to empower that mission. Rose graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a BFA in graphic design.
Natalia earned her bachelor’s degree, with majors in History and Political Science, and her master’s degree in Education at SUNY Potsdam. After working as a hybrid course designer and coordinator at Potsdam, she worked as visitor experience manager and event planner for a nonprofit animal protection organization. At GFI, Natalia works with the leadership team to create and coordinate a wide range of compelling events for scientists, entrepreneurs, investors, policymakers, and companies working in plant-based meat and clean meat technologies.
An active member of the Effective Altruism community, Zak holds a B.A. in Business Management from Cedarville University, and joined GFI after several years of experience in sales and working with start-ups. He works with leading grocery, foodservice, and restaurant companies to help increase the quality and quantity of their plant-based product offerings.
Victoria brings to GFI a unique and valuable blend of both nonprofit and startup experience. Her career ranges from years at The Humane Society of the United States, where she managed social media communications, advocacy, and fundraising, to the challenging realm of content marketing startups, where she held roles in business development and client solutions. At GFI, her experience helps connect innovative thinkers with innovative projects as the Philanthropy Officer on the East Coast. Victoria holds a B.S. in Public Relations from the University of South Carolina-Columbia.
Kyle analyzes market research on the plant-based food industry in order to identify meaningful insights and craft persuasive arguments that will help pave the way for the development and sale of more plant-based food. Kyle has previously worked as a campaign manager for a state house race in North Carolina, and as an analyst at a global strategy consulting firm. He received his B.S. in Business Administration and B.A. in Social Welfare from the University of California, Berkeley.
Victoria earned her B.S. in Agriculture and Natural Resources from Berea College where she minored in English Literature. Previously, she worked in the local food scene in Kentucky as the assistant manager for her college farm store, the interim manager for an urban farm startup, and the sole administrative/finance staffer at a food and farm policy organization. At GFI, Victoria supports our development team as they work with the GFI family of supporters to fuel our growth both in the U.S. and globally.
Alexis graduated from Northwestern University with a B.S. in Communication Studies. She has dedicated her career to securing foundation funding for many worthy nonprofit organizations in the U.S. and abroad. Alexis has served as a grant writer, an independent grants consultant, and most recently as a director at a grants consulting firm. At GFI, Alexis establishes relationships with foundations that share our passion for harnessing the power of food innovation and markets to create a healthy, humane, and sustainable future of food.
Stephanie oversees the day-to-day work of GFI’s international operations and works with the Director of International Engagement to expand GFI’s impact internationally. Prior to GFI, Stephanie spent two decades building strategic partnerships and managing international teams and programs across the private and non-profit sectors. An Asia specialist, she founded and ran the Asian Waterkeeper network for the clean water advocacy organization, Waterkeeper Alliance. Stephanie earned an Master of International Affairs degree from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs and an A.B. in History from Brown University.
Brittany has spent her career developing innovative pathways of fundraising and constituent engagement for the advancement of the nonprofit world. She came to GFI from Keuka College, where she served as the Director of Alumni Relations and Development, connecting a broad base of diverse constituents to causes that inspire philanthropic support. Brittany volunteers on several nonprofit boards, primarily as fundraising strategy counsel. Brittany holds a master’s degree in management from Keuka College, where she studied the science behind building a culture of philanthropy, and a bachelor of arts degree in history and communications from SUNY Cortland.
Mark supports GFI's lawyers and lobbyists to promote smart and equitable government oversight of plant-based products and clean meat. He holds a B.A. in government and philosophy from William & Mary and has interned in a wide variety of legal settings. Mark worked as a Lead Litigation Paralegal at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP supporting teams on complex, cross-border disputes and corporate human rights advice before joining GFI to help ensure a better future for our food system.
Annie comes with a background of development economics and sustainable food systems. She holds an MS and BS with Honors in Earth Systems from Stanford University. Prior to joining GFI, she researched nutrition, childhood development, and education in northwestern China with Stanford's Rural Education Action Project. At GFI, Annie helps members of the international good food community connect with and utilize resources and professional networks outside their home countries.
With more than 15 years of experience in development, operations, and finance, Tracy ensures that GFI runs smoothly behind-the-scenes. She has expertly managed offices, databases, accounts, and spreadsheets for many years and is thrilled to live her values by supporting a good food future. Tracy holds a bachelor's degree in anthropology from the University of Washington-Seattle.
Cameron holds a degree in biology with distinction from Carleton College. He has interned and worked for several nonprofit organizations, including Animal Charity Evaluators and Citizens for Farm Animal Protection, a project of the Humane Society of the United States. Cameron enables GFI to achieve its mission as rapidly as possible by working closely with the Policy team to level the playing field for plant-based and clean meat in the United States.
Andrew has worked as a nonprofit executive director, college professor, recruiter, job developer, and director of a postgraduate university writing center. The founder of a plant-based nutrition bar company, he also volunteers as a writer, speaker, advocate, and fundraiser for healthy, humane, and sustainable food. At GFI, he manages our hiring team and helps identify talent to build the organization. Andrew holds a bachelor's degree from The George Washington University, a master's degree from Florida Atlantic University, and a doctoral degree from Walden University.
After beginning her career in sales, Anastasia was a recruiter for startups in Silicon Valley where she witnessed first-hand the power of technology to transform and disrupt long-established industries and practices. Inspired by the possibilities for growth and innovation in the plant-based industry, she brings her skills and passion to GFI where she supports the creation of a fair, respectful, diverse and high-performance culture that enables employees to contribute their very best to the organization. Anastasia graduated with honors from the University of California at Berkeley and is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Olivia graduated from Our Lady of the Lake University-Houston with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and HR Management. She is passionate about all things HR and brings almost two decades of experience in benefits, payroll, onboarding, compensation, compliance and reporting to the GFI team. Olivia holds certifications as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) from the Human Resources Certification Institute and a SHRM-Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) from the Society for Human Resource Management.
Sarah holds a bachelor's degree in Organizational Sciences with a minor in Sociocultural Anthropology from The George Washington University. Previously, she worked as a nonprofit recruiter at an executive search firm in Washington, D.C. and has a passion for plant-based nutrition and transforming the food system. At GFI, Sarah works on assessment and hiring to help build our incredible team.
Toube (pron. "Toby") brings more than 15 years of executive assistant experience from tech startups and the banking industry to GFI. She is passionate about creating a healthier, more compassionate world and serves as a consultant for California State University and Chico’s Town Hall Meeting program on the topic of the humane treatment of animals. Toube also holds a certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies.
Anne earned her Ph.D. in Germanic Languages and Literatures from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her first career was as a Teaching Professor of German at Carnegie Mellon University, where she received her college's highest award for excellent in teaching, among other honors. Since 2007, she's worked in the non-profit sector for several groups, including two she co-founded. Anne brings considerable experience in editing and behind-the-scenes organizing to the GFI team.
Vanessa is a graduate of Purchase College and has more than a decade of administrative experience. She is also on the advisory board of the only no-kill shelter in the Bronx. At GFI, Vanessa uses her passion and skills to support both the Innovation and Corporate Engagement teams, enabling numerous team members to efficiently focus their expertise on furthering GFI's mission.
Renee holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Rochester, a master’s of education from DePaul University, and an MBA in managing for environmental sustainability from the Rochester Institute of Technology. Over her 20-year career, Renee has enjoyed a variety of vocations with science as a common theme including laboratory research, science education, and medical sales. Inspired by GFI's mission to change the future of food, Renee helps her team craft compelling messages and operate as efficiently as possible.
Alicia supports GFI's team of creative communicators. She graduated magna cum laude with bachelor's degrees in journalism and history from the University of Maryland, College Park. Alicia worked as a reporter and editor before making the move to strategic communications. She most recently worked at a clean water nonprofit and is excited to support GFI's efforts to combat the world's most pressing environmental problems by revolutionizing the food system.
Lance received his bachelor's degree in chemical and biological engineering from Princeton University and is a current Wharton MBA student. Prior to Wharton, Lance worked as an investment analyst at the McKinsey & Co. Investment Office and at The Rockefeller University, a biomedical research university. As a Campus Fellow, Lance encourages University of Pennsylvania students to pursue scientific and entrepreneurial opportunities in the plant-based and clean meat space.
Jake holds a bachelor's degree from Stanford University in Science, Technology, and Society. After graduating, Jake worked on the investment team at Makena Capital, an endowment-style investment fund investing across all asset classes and geographies. He worked on the strategy team at Impossible Foods before returning to Stanford to attend the Graduate School of Business, where he is currently earning his MBA. Jake supports The Good Food Institute's mission by increasing the number of students at Stanford interested in pursuing clean protein entrepreneurship through maximizing GFI's visibility on campus, planning events, guest lectures, and more.
Chris has more than two decades of leadership experience in financial and venture capital management. Chris is investment manager of New Crop Capital and serves as director of Anark Corporation, director at Pitcairn Financial Group, and managing partner at Abele Kerr Investments. Chris mentors startups in the good food space, provides market-level due diligence for potential investors, and connects the most innovative and disruptive good food companies with an array of potential funders.
After graduating from the University of California at Berkeley with a degree in economics, Milena went on to earn a doctorate in psychology from the Wright Institute, where she developed expertise in dietary behavior change. Milena currently holds an academic position as director of counseling psychology at the Wright Institute. She has also partnered with a number of nonprofit organizations to promote the wide-ranging benefits of a plant-strong diet. Milena is a California state councilmember for The Humane Society of the United States and speaks nationally on the psychology of dietary and social change. Milena organizes meetups for good-food entrepreneurs and advises GFI on consumer behavior.
Jaime graduated with honors from Longwood University in Virginia. Shortly thereafter she moved to California and began a career in corporate sales. Jaime’s experience is focused in the restaurant and hospitality industry, having worked with industry leaders such as OpenTable, Daiya Foods and HotSchedules. She is encouraged by the growing focus of putting plants at the center of the plate, and as an advisor to GFI, she helps to connect chefs and restaurant operators with leading innovators and innovations in plant-based and “clean” (i.e., cultured) meat, dairy, and eggs.
Jamie Macfarlane is a political and brand communications specialist and is currently completing an MBA at Stanford Business School. He spent five years with communications group WPP, where he ran election campaigns across the world. He served as a high level communications advisor to the Prime Ministers of Kosovo and Croatia and led the digital campaign of the democracy movement in Cambodia. Jamie also has extensive experience working with major consumer brands, designing advertising campaigns for Unilever, Carlsberg, Red Bull, and GSK. Jamie supports GFI through engaging in social science research and by representing us in social science coalitions related to plant based and clean meat research.
As an advisor to GFI, Jacqueline assists restaurants and wholesale distributors with improving and expanding their plant-based offerings. She has enjoyed a diverse career spanning both public and private sectors, most recently as a Senior Account Executive for Open Table, working with local and national restaurant chains as well as independent operators. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Virginia.
Currently working as a management consultant for A.T. Kearney, Gerrit grew up in the heart of the German meat industry and is highly motivated to support a movement providing alternative options to the traditional meat production. He graduated from HHL Graduate School of Management with an MSc in Management and gained experiences in several industries mostly in the controlling and business development department. At GFI, Gerrit examines the potential for Plant-Based and Clean Meat industry in Germany.
Miranda is a food scientist working in R&D for the natural foods industry who has won several new product awards, including a Vegetarian Times Foodie Award. She holds a master’s degree in Food Science from Kansas State University and a master’s degree in International Development from Tulane University. Miranda also volunteers at Compatible Technology International providing technical assistance for food processing projects in developing countries to improve the incomes and nutrition of smallholder farmers and their families. At GFI, she supports food entrepreneurs and scientists interested in plant-based foods by researching plant-based ingredient functionality.
With a diverse background that spans food production, administration, and communications, Tomas brings a unique and practical toolset to GFI. He is fascinated by food culture and how it shapes our choices. As an International Engagement Fellow, he researches the potential for growing the plant-based and clean meat industries in Argentina.
Lindsay is currently pursuing an M.S. in Agriculture, Food, and Environment at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University. She earned her J.D. from the University of Oregon School of Law, where she focused on environmental advocacy and natural resources conservation. Lindsay hopes to help pave the way for the cellular agricultural revolution by promoting policies that bring cell-based meat and other cultured animal products to a commercial reality.
Jeremy Piacente is an undergraduate studying Biomedical Sciences at the University of Central Florida. His concern regarding climate change and interest in clean meat as a solution has lead him to collaborate with a variety of entities on campus, including Al Gore's Climate Reality Project Campus Corps and the Cellular Agriculture Society. With GFI, Jeremy hopes to accelerate clean meat production through the development of a low cost and easy to produce cell culture media supplement.
April is a student at Cornell University, where she is currently pursuing a Bachelors in Food Science. As a vegan, but also a lover of meat, eggs, and dairy, she wants to use her knowledge to help replace animal products with plant-based foods and clean meat. Her goal is to contribute to making an environmentally-friendly and humane diet more accessible and appealing. At GFI, she works on identifying cost issues facing the current plant-based foods market.
Kelyse is currently pursuing her MBA at The University of Chicago Booth School of Business, where she is focused on developing her expertise in entrepreneurship, growth strategy, and business analytics. She is passionate about the intersection of food and technology and spent her business school internship working with Google Hardware. Prior business school, she was a strategy consultant with Deloitte, specializing in helping global organizations transform their HR operations to be more effective and efficient. She also holds a degree in Learning & Organizational Change from Northwestern University.
Ajay holds bachelor's degrees in Law and Commerce from The University of Sydney. After graduating, Ajay worked as a strategy consultant for Bain & Company, across Bain’s Sydney and Chicago offices. At Bain, Ajay gained valuable experience in two areas he is passionate about: food and renewable energy. Ajay is currently pursuing an MBA at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. As a Campus Fellow, Ajay helps The Good Food Institute engage with students and faculty at Northwestern, and support students seeking to innovate in the clean protein space.
Kate graduated cum laude from Vassar College, and spent five and a half years doing executive assessment and development work at Spencer Stuart, where her passion for plant-based food became increasingly hard to ignore. She believes deeply in the potential of the food system to tackle climate change, create better outcomes for whole communities, and transform individual lives. While at Spencer Stuart, she earned a certificate in holistic health coaching, and she is currently pursuing her MBA at UC Berkeley to launch a career in plant-based food. At UC Berkeley, she serves on the boards of the Food@Haas and Q@Haas clubs.
After graduating from George Washington University with a degree in international affairs and environmental studies, Maki carried out international wildlife conservation projects around education, ecotourism, and sustainable development. She is currently a Master of Environmental Management student at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. She is focused on sustainable agriculture, systems-led leadership and social innovation, and has worked with various food companies on sustainability, business strategy and marketing. As a Campus Fellow, Maki is leading a Yale-wide initiative to build curiosity around plant-based and clean meat impacts and opportunities.
Valerie Madamba is a regulatory lawyer with experience across the spectrum of FDA-regulated products and a special focus on food issues, having worked for several years as a food lawyer with the FDA’s Office of Chief Counsel. Long devoted to all things food-related, Valerie is currently part of the Legal team at Blue Apron, where she established the role of Food Regulatory Counsel, advising on issues including food safety, labeling, communications, and legislative and regulatory affairs. She frequently volunteers as a mentor to food startups in the U.S. and internationally and has also recently served as an adjunct professor of Food Law at Brooklyn Law School.
HRH Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed, an advocate of animal rights and a proponent of healthy living, believes in a bevy of clean and green methodologies. Khaled, having enthusiastically adopted a vegan lifestyle and energy efficient alternatives, is an avid healthpreneur. As a business figure, a technology enthusiast, and the founding chairman of KBW Investments, Khaled has holdings on five continents. He invests in diverse global businesses and early-stage ventures, including those in advanced technology and clean energy, at the intersection of innovation and economic stability. A member of the Saudi Arabian royal family, Khaled is a motivated spokesperson for entrepreneurs in the Middle East and endeavors to educate on animal rights while advocating the benefits of sustainability and going green. In his capacity as chairman of the elected Saudi Green Building Forum Trustee Board, he works to advance Saudi Arabia’s green building targets.
Josh Balk is co-founder of Hampton Creek, one of the fastest-growing food technology companies in the marketplace today. Josh works full time at The Humane Society of the United States where he helps build start-up companies in the food tech arena. He also works with the world’s largest food companies, such as Walmart, McDonald’s, and Starbucks, to create more humane, sustainable purchasing policies. The New York Times, Fortune magazine, and CNN are among the many media outlets to spotlight his work.
Since Ryan Bethencourt co-founded Indie Bio in 2014, he and his team have funded 42 biotech startups, including companies building the post-animal bioeconomy: Clara Foods, Memphis Meats, Gelzen, New Wave, and Pembient. Previously, Ryan headed the Life Sciences Prize Group at the XPRIZE Foundation and co-founded Berkeley Biolabs in addition to serving as its CEO. He is co-founder of Sudo Room, Counter Culture Labs, Lab Launch, and The Open Source Insulin Project as well. Ryan also helped catalyze the early biohacker movement starting in 2008.
Kevin Boylan is co-founder and co-chairman of Veggie Grill, the largest plant-based restaurant company in the United States. He is also a founding partner of Powerplant Ventures, which invests in emerging growth companies that deliver better nutrition in more sustainable and ethical ways by making it easier and more enjoyable to consume plant-based products. Kevin spent the first 10 of his more than 25 years in finance at investment bank Drexel Burnham Lambert as senior vice president and the subsequent 15 years at his own firm, Standard Capital Group.
Asheem Chandna is a partner at Greylock Partners where he assists entrepreneurs in creating and building the next generation of enterprise companies. He has helped establish and grow multiple businesses to market-leading positions. Asheem has appeared on the Forbes Midas list of top technology investors for the past several years.
Brad Goldberg spent 35 years in investment management as an executive vice president, portfolio manager, and head of the value and balanced account segment of Jennison Associates, a subsidiary of Prudential Financial. He is a certified financial analyst. Brad founded Animal Welfare Trust in 2001, which provides grants to students and organizations, and is chair of HEART, a humane education organization. Brad helped establish the Animal Studies Initiative at NYU and the Animal Advocacy Program at Harvard Law School.
Craig Phillips has held leadership positions in foodservice for decades. These include director of purchasing and corporate director of strategic planning at U.S. Foodservice Inc., and vice president of purchasing for Metz Culinary Management, a top 20 management company running foodservice operations in college, hospital, K–12, and other segments, as well as franchisee restaurants and hotels. Craig is especially interested in helping plant-based companies better understand the needs of foodservice companies.
Professor Mark Post has taught for the KNAW Interuniversity Cardiology Institute of the Netherlands, Harvard Medical School, and Dartmouth Medical School. Since 2002, he has served as professor of vascular physiology at Maastricht University and professor of angiogenesis in tissue engineering at the Technical University Eindhoven. Since 2008, he has worked on creating "clean" meat (i.e., cultured meat), including a highly publicized project to produce a clean meat hamburger, which was funded by Google co-founder Sergey Brin.
Alicia Robb is a senior fellow with the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. She is also founder and CEO of Next Wave Ventures, which has launched two angel funds and training programs focused on bringing more women into angel investing. Alicia is a visiting scholar with the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Colorado at Boulder. She is founder and former executive director and board chair of the Foundation for Sustainable Development, an international development organization. Alicia currently serves on the board of the National Advisory Council for Minority Business Enterprise, the Advisory Board for Global Entrepreneurship Week, and the Deming Center Venture Fund. She is also a guest contributor to outlets such as The Huffington Post and Forbes.
As founder of The Culinary Architects, Maggie transforms food categories and innovates products. She is focused on shifting the way people eat and is considered a thought leader in natural, organic, and plant based solutions. She has influenced and launched more than 100 successful products in her 20 years in the CPG industry. Maggie is a Certified Food Scientist from the Institute of Food Technologists and holds a B.S. in Food Science from The Ohio State University.
Chad Sarno is Vice President of Culinary at Good Catch Foods and cofounder of the Wicked Kitchen line of foods in Tesco. Chad also is an ambassador for Rouxbe, the world’s largest online cooking school, where he launched the Professional Plant-Based Certification course. He spent several years at Whole Foods Market as Senior Culinary Educator and media spokesperson for the Global Healthy Eating program. Before that, Chad launched a line of boutique restaurants in Istanbul, Munich, and London. He has been a contributing author to more than a dozen cookbooks, and if not in the kitchen he’s getting lost in his gardens.
Derek Sarno is the Executive Chef and Director of Plant-Based Innovation for Tesco, the third-largest food retailer in the world. Derek is cofounder of the Wicked Kitchen line of foods in Tesco and cofounder of Good Catch Foods. He is also the former Senior Global Executive Chef at Whole Foods Market, where he catered all the company’s major executive leadership events and oversaw national recipe development. After culinary school, Derek owned several critically acclaimed restaurants and catering businesses. He spent a few years farming and spent some quality time learning to meditate and cook a variety of foods at a Tibetan Buddhist monastery. Derek has always loved to train squirrels in the ways of the ninja.
Kurt Schmidinger is a geophysicist and earned a doctorate in food science in Vienna, focusing his dissertation on "clean" (i.e., cultured) and plant-based alternatives to animal products. In 2005, he founded the project Future Food, which gathers and presents a worldwide portfolio of alternatives to animal products for human nutrition, as well as possible future technologies for food production, such as biofermentation and clean meat.
Susan Vitka brings more than three decades of experience as a strategic financial adviser to clients in the private and social benefit sectors. Her clients have consisted of startups, Fortune 100 companies, and sovereign wealth funds, among others. She is an active early stage investor and adviser, with particular interest in life sciences, nutrition and agriculture, and the environment. Susan has served on numerous boards in the U.S. and abroad, including those of Women for Women International, Women for Women International UK (as founding chair), Physicians for Human Rights, the Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital, and several family foundations.
Suzy Welch is co-author, with husband, Jack Welch, of international best sellers The Real Life MBA and Winning. She is also author of New York Times best seller 10-10-10: A Life Transforming Idea. Her career expertise and perceptive commentary have made her a regular contributor on The TODAY Show and Bulls & Bears. Suzy, a vegan and longtime animal rights supporter, currently serves on the board of directors of The Humane Society of the United States and is a mother of four.