The 2013 annual symposium will convene senior leaders from across sectors to chart a course for how science, trade, and business can be mobilized to advance food and nutrition security. The  event will feature the release of a new study endorsed by the Global Agricultural Development Advisory Group that defines next steps for the US on global agricultural development. 

Speaker Bio



Chicago Council Global Food Security Symposium 2013
Capitalizing on the Power of Science, Trade, and Business to End Hunger and Poverty
A New Agenda for Food Security
May 21, 2013 | 8:30am – 4:30pm | Washington, DC

7:30 a.m. Registration Opens
Location:  Amphitheater Foyer (Concourse Level)

8:30 a.m. WELCOME & REPORT PRESENTATION – Advancing Global Food Security: The Power of Science, Trade, and Business
Location:  Amphitheater (Concourse Level)
The Honorable Catherine Bertini, former executive director, UN World Food Program (1992-2002)
The Honorable Dan Glickman, former secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture (1995-2001)

9:00 a.m.  KEYNOTE
The Honorable Catherine Bertini, former executive director, UN World Food Program (1992-2002)

By the Roots: Ending Extreme Poverty through Agriculture
The Honorable Rajiv Shah, administrator, U.S. Agency for International Development

9:15 a.m.  DISCUSSION – A New Science of Agriculture to Advance Global Food Security
CHAIR:  Dr. Barbara Schaal, dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences and
Mary-Dell Chilton distinguished professor, Washington University in St. Louis  
Mr. Brett Begemann, president and chief commercial officer, Monsanto Company
Dr. Cutberto (Bert) Garza, provost and dean of faculties, Boston College
Dr. Rob Horsch, deputy director of research and development, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Dr. Mauricio Antonio Lopes, president, Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation
Dr. Lindiwe Majele Sibanda, chief executive officer and head of mission, Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network
Dr. Ren Wang, assistant director general, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
 Today’s Challenge Requires Tomorrow’s Leaders
Mr. Paul E. Schickler, president, DuPont Pioneer

Thinking Beyond Supply: Local Efforts, Enduring Impact
Mr. John F. Ginascol, corporate vice president, Global Supply, Abbott Nutrition

10:50 a.m.  DISCUSSION – The Agriculture and Health Nexus
CHAIR:  Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, co-director, Program in Cardiovascular Epidemiology and associate professor of medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School; associate professor of epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health
Dr. Subbanna Ayyappan, secretary, Department of Agricultural Research and Education, Government of India; director general, The Indian Council of Agricultural Research
Hon. Prof. Ruth K. Oniang'o, founder and editor-in-chief, African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development; founder and CEO, Rural Outreach Africa
Dr. Howard-Yana Shapiro, chief agricultural officer, Mars, Inc.; senior fellow, plant sciences, University of California, Davis; distinguished fellow, World Agroforestry Centre

Farming in the 21st Century—Informing The Dialogue With The 98%
Mr. Christopher Policinski, president and CEO, Land O’Lakes, Inc.

11:55 a.m.  KEYNOTE
Ms. Ellen Chilemba, British Council Global Changemaker; founder, Project Maxi and Tiwale

Feed 2.0
Ms. Lauren Bush Lauren, CEO and founder, FEED

12:15 p.m.  LUNCH
Location:  Atrium Ballroom (Concourse Level)

Mr. Marshall M. Bouton, president, The Chicago Council on Global Affairs

The Hungry Season: Ending the Cycle of Hunger and Poverty
Dr. Helene D. Gayle, president and CEO, CARE

1:30 p.m.  LIGHTNING PRESENTATIONS – Environment and Agriculture Nexus
Location:  Amphitheater (Concourse Level)

CHAIR:  The Honorable Doug Bereuter, president emeritus, The Asia Foundation

Handling the Heat: Climate Change’s Impact on Agriculture
Dr. Cynthia E. Rosenzweig, senior research scientist, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies

Food Security is National Security
Mr. Rich Engel (Major General, USAF Ret.), director, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Strategic Futures Group, National Intelligence Council

Water Smart Agriculture
Ms. Mina Guli, founder and CEO, Thirst

Switched On: Engaging Smallholder Social Networks through Information and Communication Technologies
Mr. Rikin Gandhi, CEO, Digital Green

Leveraging Science to Meet the World’s Burgeoning Demand for Animal Products
Dr. Gabor Forgacs, co-founder and chief scientific officer, Modern Meadow; professor of biomedical engineering, University of Missouri

2:50 p.m.  DISCUSSION – The New Trade Opportunity
CHAIR: The Honorable Ann M. Veneman, former executive director, United Nations Children’s Fund; former secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture
Dr. Yaneer Bar-Yam, president, New England Complex Systems Institute
Dr. Shadrack Ralekeno Moephuli, president and CEO, Agricultural Research Council, South Africa
Mr. David C. Nelson, global strategist, Rabobank International
Mr. Michael Smart, vice president, Rock Creek Global Advisors LLC

4:00 p.m.  KEYNOTE
The Honorable Dan Glickman, former secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture (1995-2001)

The Power of Innovation to Feed a Growing Population
The Honorable Tom Vilsack, secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture

The Honorable Catherine Bertini, former executive director, UN World Food Program (1992-2002)


Advancing Global Food Security: The Power of Science, Trade, and Business

Next Gen Delegation

The Chicago Council is pleased to host a delegation of students from land-grant and research universities that plan to enter the agriculture, development, or food sectors. Students are senior undergraduates or post-graduate-levels. Biographies for all students participating in the delegation are provided here for more information.

Renata Ahlert is a Brazilian citizen and a PhD student in plant breeding at The Plant Genomics and Breeding Center at the Federal University of Pelotas, RS, Brazil. Renata currently holds a BSc in agronomy and is working on a MSc in Plant Breeding. In 2010, she joined the Monsanto’s Beachell-Borlaug International Scholars Program and begun a project called “Breeding Rice for Cold Tolerance in Southern Brazil”. Work on this project has allowed for collaboration with the Institute of Plant Breeding, Genetics & Genomics at The University of Georgia in the United States, as well as with the Embrapa Temperate Climate (Brazilian Agricultural Research Enterprise). As rice plays a primary role in the Brazilian diet, and the Rio Grande do Sul state is responsible for about 67% of Brazilian rice production, Cultivars adapted to climatic adversities have fundamental importance in agricultural production. This program allows Renata to help improve crop production, and to provide regional farmers more technology, through the union of the public and private sectors, which results in the continuation of the supply of food to the population.
Ellen Chilemba is from Malawi and is 19 years old. Ellen was born and raised in Malawi, but left at age 16 when she received a scholarship to study at the prestigious African Leadership Academy (ALA) in South Africa. She graduated from ALA last year with a diploma in Leadership, Entrepreneurship and African Studies, and is currently in between studies as she will be attending Mount Holyoke College this fall. Ellen has always been passionate about development, especially with the great poverty her country. One route that she has always believed can curb this poverty is entrepreneurship. And so, as a young entrepreneur, she has sought ways to promote development. One viable way that she believes in is the use of technology to improve farming systems. Malawi is very dependent on agriculture, but they can only farm for half of the year depending on the rainfall. The farming is very dependent on rain, which makes farming unsustainable. There is a need for irrigation systems and so she began the Project Maxi. Project Maxi seeks to use technology such as windmills to generate electricity that can be used to run water-pumps, thereby irrigating farms. Ellen is also the founder of Tiwale, a project that empowers young Malawian women to become entrepreneurs through entrepreneurial education and microfinance.

See Also: Video Interview: Ellen Chilemba Discusses Irrigation Project to Increase Malawi Agricultural Production
Abigail Conrad is currently a PhD candidate in anthropology at American University in Washington, DC. She completed a BA in anthropology at the University of Rochester in 2008. Her research focuses on food security, sustainable agriculture, and livelihoods. She is currently writing her dissertation on the relationship between the alternative agricultural practice of permaculture, and food and nutrition security in Malawi. She has published in the Guardian (London), and her research has been presented at conferences such as the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security’s Conservation Agriculture Symposium in Malawi. In 2011, she received a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency STAR Fellowship, and research funding from American University and the Explorers Club Washington Group. After completing her doctoral program, Abigail plans to conduct research on agriculture and the global food system to help inform solutions to the pressing interconnected problems of food and nutrition insecurity, environmental degradation, and poverty.
Kenda Cunningham, a DrPH candidate at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) has an academic background in political science and development studies and worked for several years at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).She is based in the Department of Population Health, supervised by Elaine Ferguson and Ricardo Uauy, and collaborating with the interdisciplinary team at the Leverhulme Centre for Integrative Research on Agriculture and Health (LCIRAH).

With a primary interest in child health and nutrition, Kenda's research focuses on evaluating multi-sectoral policies and programming with public health nutrition aims. She has completed a critical review of Bolivia's Malnutrition Zero program for the Organizational and Professional Attachment (OPA) aspect of her degree. For her thesis, Kenda has coordinated a baseline survey in Nepal, which will form the base of a longer term impact assessment for Suaahara, a large-scale multi-sectoral nutrition initiative. Using the baseline data, she will use appropriate causal mediation methods and techniques to make formal, model-based estimates of deterministic pathways of undernutrition for children under 2 in rural Nepal. Pathways examined will include caregiving practices of infant and young child feeding (IYCF), hygiene practices, and preventive health-seeking behaviors.
Jasmine Dillon received her Bachelor’s in Animal Science from Texas A&M University in 2011.  She is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Animal Breeding at Texas A&M, where she is studying epigenetic effects on birth weight in crossbred beef cattle.  During her undergraduate studies, she was selected as a participant in the FIPSE-CAPES reciprocal exchange program to the Universidade de São Paulo in São Paulo, Brazil.  The exchange program exposed her to Brazilian agriculture and from it she gained new perspective and passion for her role as an animal scientist in the greater, global food system.  She hopes to use her background in animal science to help develop sustainable livestock production systems in developing countries with the ultimate goal of building their capacity to be a part of the solution to "feeding the 9 billion in 2050.”
Jeramia Garcia will receive a Master in Public Policy degree from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government at the end of this month. After graduation, Jeramia hopes to continue her work in poverty and hunger alleviation and is especially interested in food and nutrition security for vulnerable populations, both in the United States and internationally.

While at the Kennedy School, Jeramia was part of the International and Global Affairs concentration, focusing on food and agricultural policy. For her thesis project, she worked with the Food and Nutrition Security Steering Committee for CARE International. In an effort to increase the utility of her research, Jeramia traveled to India to do an analysis of her initial findings as they related to CARE India and their work on the ground. Her final report offered recommendations on how CARE can incorporate the progressive realization of the right to food to improve program impact for their food and nutrition security initiatives. Prior to the Kennedy School, Jeramia received her Bachelor of Science in Public Administration from the University of Arizona. Between her undergraduate and graduate studies, Jeramia served two years in the United States Peace Corps as a Municipal Development Advisor in San Marcos, Guatemala.
Enrique Antonio Huesca-Fernandez holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Law and a Specialty Degree in Public Law, from the Law School of the Universidad Panamericana, in Mexico City. He currently is a Master’s in Public Administration Candidate and also a Certificate in Advance Studies in Security Studies Candidate, both at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, in Syracuse University.

In 2009 Enrique joined the Secretariat of Finance of Mexico as Advisor to the Deputy Secretary of Budget and Public Expenditure, Dionisio Pérez-Jácome Friscione. In 2011 he was appointed Private Secretary to the Attorney General of Mexico, Mrs. Marisela Morales Ibanez. His last appointment before starting his Master’s studies was as Head of the Office of the Deputy Secretary of Management at the Secretariat of Communications and Transport of Mexico, Victor Manuel Lamoyi Bocanegra.

As adviser to the Deputy Secretary of Budget, he was in charge of the team that monitors the comments of the budgetary supervisory bodies of Mexico to the Undersecretariat of Budget. In this role he was in charge of the sufficiency of the procedures and oversight hearings undertaken by the legislature over the executive branch. As Private Secretary, he was in charge of the immediate and monitoring of all matters covered by the Madam Attorney in her meetings with the President, the Cabinet and her Staff. Enrique coordinated and organized all of her National and International meetings. At the beginning of the year 2012 he was designated as Chief of Office of the Official Mayor, the Deputy Secretary for Management, at the Secretariat of Communications and Transport.

With support by a proposal of the Secretary Perez-Jacome, Former Secretary of Communications and transport of Mexico, the National Council of Science and Technology of Mexico, CONACYT, Enrique was awarded with a scholarship to study a master's degree in Public Administration in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs.

Given his academic and professional profile, he is particularly interested in the study area of Constitutional Law and Public Law. Particularly he would like to pursue a research on “Powers of the Executive Branch in order to redirect the budget: The future demise of the legislative power of approval of the budget”.

Enrique is a public official aware of the challenges that the Public Administration, internationally or locally, has as the main driver in the pursuit of quality of life for citizens around the world.
Wuyi Lu is a graduate student from Nanjing Agricultural University, majoring in Agricultural Economics. His areas of interest and research are: 1) empirical analysis of food security and food safety; 2) agricultural structure change, demographic trend and rural development in China; 3) strategic planning and management for agribusiness and food chain.

Wuyi won the championship as a team leader in the students case competition of the International Food and Agribusiness Management Association’s (IFAMA) annual Forum & Symposium in 2012. Due to his solid foundation in the Agribusiness field, he was offered an internship within Novus International, where he acts as a consultant currently
Wuyi cares a great deal about China’s agriculture. China has entered an era of unprecedented talent scarcity and mass rural population mobility. If these go unaddressed, sustained food security and economic growth will never be achieved. Wuyi hopes to attract and orient talent to engage in the global network of agricultural and food industry, and educate the next generation of “new farmers” to transform traditional agriculture in China.
Ashley Pearson is originally from a small town in Iowa and now live in Naperville, Illinois. Ashley received her bachelor’s degree in Dietetics from Iowa State University, and is currently in the MBA program with a coordinated Dietetic Internship program at Dominican University. Ashley just completed her first year of the program this month and has had a variety of internship experiences included working at Catholic Charities, Simeon Career Academy in the culinary arts lab, and at National Dairy Council, where she will continue working this summer. Ashley’s experiences have increased her awareness of food insecurity and hunger and she has a new aspiration to increase the nutrition and food security of those in need. She hopes to increase the awareness of the programs available that aim to end hunger. There are many hunger relief programs, but many people who need them don’t know about them. Ashley believes there needs to be education about these programs and how to receive their services to increase nutrition and food security of those in need. She also hopes to increase the services provided by hunger relief programs to reach more individuals.  
Mariela Fernanda Poveda obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Food Science from the Universidad San Francisco de Quito-Ecuador in 2006 and is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in Agriculture with a focus in Dairy Science and Technology at California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo. As a graduate student, Ms. Poveda developed training-based knowledge in the Dairy Industry while working at the Creamery located in Cal Poly. She acquired experience in quality assurance, quality control, food safety and food microbiology. Her research interests include global food security and hunger, food safety, research and development of food products and food production. In the near future, she would like to translate her current scientific and practical experience-based knowledge in the food and dairy sciences into realistic applicable concepts for rural agricultural communities. Ms. Poveda is currently searching for Doctoral Programs with a focus on International Development and Global Food Security.

See Also: Video Interview: Mariela Poveda Discusses Her Role As an Emerging Scientist in Agricultural Research
Chantal Roberts's research interest is in policy analysis related to global food systems, with a focus on understanding how and why stakeholder preferences influence technological implementation. Building upon her experience in the US, Mexico and India, Roberts’ thesis further expands her collaborations: “Stakeholder Valuation of Post-harvest Technologies in Sub-Saharan Africa with Local Innovation.” This thesis uses multi-criteria decision analysis and geographic information systems methodology to create a baseline understanding of the regional and local political landscapes such that she can analyze food storage technologies available versus socially viable. Her hometown is Ames, Iowa where she earned a BS in Agronomy from Iowa State University. She is currently a Master’s student at Clark University in the Environmental Science and Policy program.
Jose Pablo Soto-Arias is a PhD student in the Department of Plant Pathology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Jose’s PhD research project focuses on investigating the “potential role of insects pest of vegetable crops in the growth, survival, and transmission of the human pathogen Salmonella enterica"; which is a major cause of foodborne illness around the world.

Both his personal and professional experiences have made him aware that poverty, hunger and food insecurity are inherently connected, which is the reason why he is interested in helping to strengthen food security. One of his strongest passions in life is to find scientific solutions to solve agricultural problems, and implement new technologies to enhance the safety, profitability, and efficiency of crop production. Jose is highly motivated and committed to a scientific-academic career, making research and knowledge more accessible and understandable to diverse audiences, in particular to young generations and farmers; but also to advocate for agriculture research while promoting the importance of agriculture for the benefit of the human society.

See Also: Video Interview: Jose Pablo Soto-Arias on Importance of Supporting New Agricultural Research
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