The United Soybean Board (USB) supported the development of this American Society of Agronomy webinar series and the Certified Crop Adviser (CCA) Sustainability Specialty certification (SSp).
A panel of industry professionals will interact with one another as they integrate the concepts of environmental and resource stewardship, value chain, and communicating sustainability in the context of the series scenario.
CCA/CPAg: 1.0 Sustainability
CPSS/CPSC: 1.0 Professional Meeting
Andy Bensend lives in NW Wisconsin and owns and operates AB Farms (3000-acre cash grain farm), AB Seed & Consulting, Inc. (a Pioneer/ DuPont sales agency), and AB Ag Services, Inc. (a custom farming enterprise that performs planting to harvesting operations for the area’s sizeable dairy farmers). He maintains his CCA certification and holds a BS degree in Ag Education from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. Andy currently serves as VP of Wisconsin Soybean Marketing Board, and on the Midwest Shippers Association Board of Directors. Andy is focused on a forward-thinking approach to his businesses with intent to promote reduced carbon footprint and improved soil quality on the acres he influences to insure we can produce food for the future.
Manager, Agricultural Commodities, Sustainable Food
World Wildlife Fund
Franklin Holley has been with World Wildlife Fund since 2011 and currently serves as Manager of Agricultural Commodities on WWF’s Sustainable Food Team. She is WWF’s agriculture lead in the Global Partnership with the Coca-Cola Company and manages field projects and sustainable supply chain engagement on row crops in the US and globally. Franklin also represents WWF as an Executive Committee Board Member at Field to Market: the Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture, a diverse group of grower organizations; agribusinesses; food, fiber, restaurant and retail companies; conservation groups; universities and agency partners focusing on promoting, defining and measuring the sustainability of food, fiber and fuel production in the United States. Franklin holds an MS in International Agricultural Development from the University of California, Davis and a BA in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Virginia. Prior to joining WWF, Franklin worked in non-profit management, sustainable & agricultural development, and extension programming.
Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance
Sean McMahon is executive director of the Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance, a clean-water initiative supported by the Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and Iowa Pork Producers Association. The mission of the Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance is to increase the pace and scale of farmer-led efforts to improve water quality. In that capacity he works to help implement the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy by encouraging Iowa farmers to adopt voluntary conservation practices aimed at reducing nitrogen and phosphorus in waterways. Previously Sean was North America agriculture program director of The Nature Conservancy, focused on strategies to make agriculture more environmentally sustainable including through more effective advocacy and implementation of the Farm Bill, strategic partnerships with agribusinesses, and engaging in agricultural supply chain initiatives designed to help farmers produce more food, feed, fiber and fuel in an increasingly sustainable manner. Sean has worked on natural resources policy for over twenty years. He served as state director of the Conservancy’s Iowa Chapter, implementing statewide strategies to improve natural resources conservation. His work included leadership efforts to conserve Iowa’s most important natural areas. As chair of the Iowa’s Water and Land Legacy Campaign, he also led a successful effort and coalition of more than 130 organizations dedicated to securing increased funding for clean water, soil conservation and wetland restoration. Before joining the Conservancy, Sean directed national land stewardship campaigns for the National Wildlife Federation (NWF). There he advanced national policy and advocacy work to protect public and private lands—most notably sites such as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the Rocky Mountain Front in Montana. Sean also led NWF’s agriculture policy work leading up to the 2008 Farm Bill. His experience with agricultural policy extends back to 2001, when he worked on the 2002 Farm Bill as assistant director of government relations for the National Audubon Society. In addition, Sean worked for the Department of the Interior in a variety of capacities, including as deputy director and acting director of the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs where he received two vice-presidential awards for his work to reinvent government. Prior to that Sean worked for Clean Water Action where he promoted the organizations efforts to improve water quality in the Chesapeake Bay and Everglades. Sean is a member of the Farm Foundation Roundtable. He is also chair of the Conservation Reserve Program Committee of the Iowa NRCS State Technical Committee and serves on an advisory body for the U.S. Soybean Export Council and on the board of the CropLife Foundation.
Stefani Millie Grant
Senior Manager, State External Affairs and Sustainability
Stefani Millie Grant is Senior Manager, State External Affairs & Sustainability for Unilever, a food and personal care products manufacturing company. Ms. Grant works with elected officials and NGO’s on Unilever’s sustainability efforts, and also program manages all of Unilever’s sustainable sourcing programs in the U.S. and Canada. Prior to working for Unilever, Ms. Grant was a Vice President with Stateside Associates, a consulting firm in Arlington, Virginia, where she worked on agricultural and conservation issues for a major equipment manufacturer and also the Department of Defense. An Iowa native, Ms. Grant holds a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Iowa and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting and Public Administration from Buena Vista University. She is an avid skeet and sporting clays shooter, winning the 2004 Iowa State Skeet Championship in her respective classes.
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January 19, 2016