Expand All Bios
Collapse All Bios

Adrián Aké Gomez
Founding Partner, Consultant, and Legal Representative, SEINQROO, Sociedad Civil
Read Bio

Adrian Ake Gomez is the founding partner, consultant, and legal representative of the civil society organization SEINQROO, formed in 2008 by entrepreneurial professionals who offer consulting and training services for the different local and regional economic system actors. His expertise includes organizational change and human community development, including a focus on social, environmental, and economic sustainability with market tools and administrative processes (entrepreneurship). He holds a Master's in Economics of Natural Resources and the Environment.

Enrique Andaluz
Director, Global Digital Advisory, Microsoft
Read Bio

Enrique is the Director of Digital Advisory Services at Microsoft. He is an industry thought leader keen on industrial IoT (IIoT) and advanced technologies, like artificial intelligence and mixed reality. Enrique has guided some of the world’s largest companies into mastering the adoption of digital capabilities. In previous roles at Microsoft, he was responsible for the strategic direction of IIoT solutions in the Manufacturing Industry sector. Enrique is a graduate of Georgia Tech, with a Master’s degree in Operations Research.

Norman Avila
Software Engineer, MeteoTech
Read Bio

Norman Avila is a Guatemalan software engineer working in software and IT consulting since 1997. For the last 10 years, Norman has focused on weather, databases, and mapping, assisting Central American weather services in climatic database management systems. He manages the Latin American weather portal ClimaYa.com and the mobile app ClimaDiario, targeting small farmers with weather forecasts and crop-related alerts. He is passionate about applying technology to improve life conditions and development in Guatemala.

Eelco Baan
Global Coordinator of Sustainable Markets, SNV
Read Bio

Eelco Baan is SNV’s Global Coordinator of Sustainable Markets. Eelco has worked with SNV since 1999, focusing on inclusive agricultural value chain development, agricultural commercialization, and income generation for SMEs. On behalf of Triodos Bank, he served on the board of Sathapana Ltd., a Micro Finance Institute with a loan portfolio of more than USD $100 million and over 60,000 clients. Eelco received his MSc in Business Administration from Erasmus University, Rotterdam, in The Netherlands.

Douglas Barcenas
Chief of Party, El Salvador Coffee Rehabilitation and Agricultural Diversification Project, NCBA CLUSA
Read Bio

Mr. Douglas Barcenas has more than 15 years of experience in managing international development projects in the areas of program implementation, field operations, financial management, and other areas. He has supported small and medium producer organization development in Angola, Uganda, Mozambique, Namibia, and El Salvador. Currently, he serves as NCBA CLUSA's COP for the USDA-funded El Salvador Coffee Rehabilitation and Agricultural Diversification project that as supported 7,741 farmers as of April 21, 2018.

Angela Bastidas
Senior Operations Director, Semilla Nueva
Read Bio

Angela Bastidas is Semilla Nueva's Senior Operations Director. Angela worked for 19 years at Monsanto Company, where she had several leadership roles ending as Technical Lead in Mexico. She was responsible for developing seeds, traits, and chemicals and was a member of the executive leadership team. Angela is an agricultural engineer from National University of Colombia and holds a PhD and Master degrees in Crop Physiology and Production from University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Elizabeth Bryan
Senior Research Analyst, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
Read Bio

Elizabeth Bryan is a Senior Research Analyst at the IFPRI where she conducts policy-relevant research on sustainable agricultural production, natural resource management, climate-smart agriculture, gender, small-scale irrigation, and the water-energy-food nexus. She has published several journal articles on these topics. Elizabeth has extensive experience collecting and analyzing quantitative and qualitative data, regularly presenting research results to audiences at policy workshops and international conferences. Elizabeth holds an M.A. in Development Economics from American University.

Ashleigh Burgess
Strategic Partnerships Manager, Trees for the Future (TREES)
Read Bio

Ashleigh Burgess works to bring the power of trees to institutional, donor, and civil society partners. She has extensive experience in program design, outreach, and partnership building. Before TREES, she spent time as an agroforestry Peace Corps Volunteer and as a value chain specialist at International Relief and Development in Senegal. She has an M.S. in agricultural development and natural resource management from Michigan State University.

Kristin Callahan
International Programs Director, INMED Partnerships for Children
Read Bio

Kristin Callahan is the International Programs Director at INMED Partnerships for Children, which promotes climate-smart agriculture via aquaponics to improve climate adaptation, food security and economic self-sufficiency in developing regions. As a former Peace Corps volunteer with a degree in public and environmental health from the University of Washington, she promotes program excellence, impact and sustainability in all regions in which INMED works, including the aquaponics program in Jamaica, South Africa and Peru.

Anita Campion
President & CEO, Connexus Corporation
Read Bio

Anita is a rural and agricultural finance expert with 30 years of experience in international finance and private sector development. She has led Connexus since its inception in 2007, overseeing USAID-funded projects, including Connexus’ work on USAID/Ghana FinGAP and USAID/Rwanda’s PSDAG project and Huguka Dukore. Previously, she managed the Financial Sector portfolio for Chemonics, overseeing projects related to SME finance, insurance, and more. Anita has designed and led participatory trainings in English, Spanish and French.

Michael Carson
Program Director, Trees for the Future (TREES)
Read Bio

Michael Carson has worked on agriculture and small business development programs across Sub-Saharan Africa for 25 years. He is a former Peace Corps Kenya Volunteer and has previously worked at Africare, Partners for Development, and Global Communities. He holds an MPA from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and a Certificate in Non-Profit Management from Stanford University.

Kathryn Cavallin
Country Manager, Ecuador, ECOM Agroindustrial
Read Bio

Kathryn Cavallin is the Country Manager in Ecuador for ECOM Agroindustrial, a global commodity merchant and the third largest supplier of cocoa. Kathryn has 10 years of experience beginning as a Peace Corps volunteer working with a cocoa farmers’ cooperative in the Dominican Republic and now as the manager of one of the biggest exporters in Ecuador. Throughout her career she has been committed to finding innovative solutions to improve sustainability in the supply chain.

Mauricio Chacon
Livestock Program Manager, Costa Rican Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock
Read Bio

Mauricio Chacón Navarro, Zootechnist Engineer, is the Manager of the National Livestock Program for the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG) in Costa Rica. In that capacity he is the coordinator the National Strategy for Low Carbon Livestock Farming (ENGBC) and the Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Action on Livestock.

Nacibe Chemor Salas
Chief of Financing, Mexico National Forestry Commission
Read Bio

Since 2009, Nacibe has worked with Mexico’s National Forestry Commission. She has worked with community forest businesses, supporting their operational, organizational and commercial processes with a specific focus on the development of productive value chains. Currently she is the Chief of Financing in the International Affairs and Financing Unit, where she collaborates to develop innovative financing mechanisms for the forestry sector. Nacibe has a Bachelor’s Degree in International Economic Relations from the Universidad Autonóma del Estado de Mexico.

Liuben Chipev
Project Associate, Connexus Corporation
Read Bio

Liuben provides programmatic support for Connexus' portfolio of projects, including the USDA LIFFT-Cashew project and USAID/Rwanda PSDAG and Huguka Dukore projects. Prior to joining Connexus, Liuben worked at Diamax Information Systems where he assisted on digital media and strategy projects in the public and private sectors. Liuben received his Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service with a concentration in Culture and Politics from Georgetown University and is fluent in French and Bulgarian.

Mario Chocooj
Researcher, ANACAFE-Guatemala
Read Bio

Mario Enrique Chocooj Pop is a researcher with the Guatemalan National Coffee Association (ANACAFE) responsible for coordinating the surveillance system for coffee pests and diseases. His research involves planting density, seed management, coffee quality, climate change, and others. With the USAID Regional Climate Change Program, he developed and implemented the Coffee Cloud App, a multifunctional tool that allows coffee farmers to provide information related to climate changes and the status of pests and diseases.

Antonio Ek Flores
Parter and General Manager, USAEC Apiculturists S.C.
Read Bio

Antonio Ek Flores is a Partner and General Manager of USAEC Apiculturists S.C., a cooperative society formed in 2016 by 51 honey producers. Their strength lies in the commercialization of 100% natural honey, generating added value for the sugar market through the diversification of presentations and marketing. In the last two years the cooperative has implemented a strategic plan and made adjustments to their community structure, which has generated significant dividends. Mr. Flores holds a Master’s in Business Administration and Management.

Hannes Graef
Co-Founder & Head of Brand, YAPU Solutions
Read Bio

Hannes Graef is the co-founder and head of brand at YAPU Solutions, which provides a software that enhances the risk-assessment of credits by introducing data-driven, digital lending processes to (micro-) financial institutions. Prior to founding YAPU he built his career in various roles in the area of communications and marketing focusing on how technology and business can bring positive impact to society. He holds a MA from Humboldt University Berlin in English, Communications and Politics.

Juan Frausto Leyva
Director, Program for the Conservation of Forests and Watersheds, FMCN, A.C.
Read Bio

Juan is the Director of the Conservation of Forests and Watersheds Program for the Mexican Fund for the Conservation of Nature A.C. He coordinates the Committee of Protection and Forest Conservation of the National Forestry Commission. He holds a Masters in Rural Development from the Autonomous Metropolitan University.

Gigi Gatti
Regional Director, Asia, Grameen Foundation
Read Bio

Gigi is Grameen Foundation USA’s Regional Director, Asia and concurrently Country Director, Philippines. Gigi has over 25 years work experience in the IT, banking, insurance, microfinance and development sectors. She holds an MBA and a BS in Computer Science from the De la Salle University, Philippines and is a Certified Microfinance Expert certificate from the Frankfurt School of Finance and Management, Germany. She is also a Certified Information Systems Auditor with ISACA, Illinois, USA

Eduardo Gonzalez
Program Quality and Resources Mobilization Specialist, CARE Honduras
Read Bio

Eduardo is a civil engineer specializing in hydric resource management with a Master's degree in climate change and sustainable development, working with CARE for more than 14 years. Currently, he is the Program Quality and Resources Mobilization Specialist assisting the country office by coordinating the emergency response strategy, technical advisory for climate change and resilience, and proposal design. His experience includes development of technologies for WASH, structuring impact measurement systems, and capacity building processes.

Daniel Granada
Partner, Pomona Impact
Read Bio

Daniel Granada is a Partner at Pomona Impact, a leading Central American impact investing firm. He has over 12 years of experience helping entrepreneurs raise growth capital in Latin America. Before joining Pomona Daniel worked at the Inter-American Development Bank, where he identified and invested in businesses that created access to basic services at the base of the socioeconomic pyramid in Central America.

Geoff Heinrich
Senior Technical Advisor
Read Bio

Geoff is a Senior Technical Advisor for Agriculture, Environment and Rural Livelihoods for the Catholic Relief Services (CRS). Geoff provides technical assistance to CRS agriculture and environment programs primarily in Africa through sharing innovations, managing learning opportunities, and strengthening relationships. He has a Ph.D. in Crop and Soil Science and 30 years of on-farm R&D experience with smallholder farmers. Geoff represents CRS on the Africa-wide AU-NEPAD iNGO Alliance for Scaling Up Climate-Smart Agriculture in Africa.

Paul Hicks
Water Resources Coordinator
Read Bio

Paul is the Water Resources Coordinator for CRS in Latin America, with nearly twenty years of experience in water resources management and agricultural development. His current work focuses on promoting sustainable agriculture and the conservation of drinking water sources. Paul has a Master’s degree in International Agricultural Development from the University of California, Davis. For CRS, he has lived and worked in Albania, Mindanao (Philippines), Afghanistan, and Central America.

Troy Hoppenjan
Agriculture and Livelihoods Program Manager, Catholic Relief Services (CRS)
Read Bio

Troy Hoppenjan is the CRS Agriculture and Livelihoods Program Manager, providing support, analysis, knowledge management and coordination to the CRS Global Agriculture portfolio. His background is in economic policy and cost-benefit analysis with specific experience in Ag value chains, public-private partnerships, and ICT4D solutions. Troy Hoppenjan has worked in research and rural development issues in Sub-Saharan Africa since 2003 when he served as an agroforestry extension agent with the Peace Corps.

Sylvia Ivankovich
Deputy Director, Administrative Board, Dos Pinos Cooperative
Read Bio

Sylvia Ivankovich is an agronomic engineer who has managed specialized dairy livestock farms for over 35 years, overseeing production of up to 9,000 liters of milk on two farms which hold the Costa Rican Ecological Blue Banner Award. She is a member of the dairy production cooperative Dos Pinos and serves as Deputy Director on the Administrative Board. She is the first woman to hold this position since the company was founded 70 years ago.

Christoph Jungfleisch
Co-Founder and Managing Director, YAPU Solutions
Read Bio

Christoph has built a career around promoting scalable green inclusive finance. He held various positions in SME and smallholder finance with IPC/ProCredit Holding, Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, Mobisol and as independent consultant. He is co-founder and Managing Director of YAPU Solutions, a sustainable finance consultancy and software provider of a customizable one-stop, off-the-shelf SaaS solution for microfinance and other institutions, supporting cash-flow based, climate- and data-smart lending to smallholder farmers and microbusinesses worldwide.

Joan Lagos Santos
Program Coordinator, FINDECA
Read Bio

Joan Santos is an agronomist from the Autonomous University of Chapingo. He is the finance executive for Coffee and Forestry at FINDECA. Currently, he is the Coordinator of Project 4 of the Forest Investment Program in Mexico (FIP), a program that has financed sustainable projects and provided access to credit to community forestry companies working in the forestry and coffee sectors, and located in strategic zones for carbon emissions reduction, forest degradation, and deforestation.

Daniel Lapidus
Senior Economist and Policy Analyst, RTI International
Read Bio

Daniel Lapidus is a senior economist and policy analyst at RTI International, an independent nonprofit research institute dedicated to improving the human condition. With more than 10 years of experience managing international agricultural and climate change programs with a focus on Latin America, Mr. Lapidus leads efforts spanning socioeconomic impact analysis, benefit-cost and cost-effectiveness analyses, and technology transfer. He leads multi-disciplinary teams and molds approaches to address issues in both developed and low-income contexts.

John Leary
Executive Director, Trees for the Future (TREES)
Read Bio

John Leary has extensive experience designing high-tech, low-tech and no-tech agricultural training programs, which he began creating as Peace Corps Senegal volunteer. In 2017, John released a book titled “One Shot: How Trees are our Last Chance for Survival,” which outlines how we can feed the future without destroying our planet. John is dedicated to helping TREES bring the Forest Garden Approach to farmers across the developing world.

Karen Lopez
Collaborations Director, Semilla Nueva
Read Bio

Karen Lopez leads Semilla Nueva’s collaborations program, which assists local Guatemalan organizations to produce biofortified seed. Under her direction the program has trained four organizations to produce and promote nutritious seed, improving the nutrition of 47,000 people in 2017. Karen has a degree in Economics from the University of Francisco Marroquin and previously worked in finance. She has represented Guatemala at international events related to development, including Youth Ag-Summit and One Young World.

Panos Loukos
mAgri Value Chain Specialist, GSMA
Read Bio

Panos is the mAgri Value Chain Specialist and is currently based in the GSMA London office. Panos works directly with six mAgri market engagements across Africa and Asia providing agricultural consultancy to guide new innovative approaches to digitising agricultural value chains. He supports the process of value chain analysis and assessment, agribusiness pipeline development, provisioning, managing and maintaining agriculture content while also acting as the evangelist to the industry for the mAgri programme.

Cristina Manfre
Senior Associate, Cultural Practice
Read Bio

Cristina Manfre is a gender and development specialist with ten years of experience improving development organizations’ attention to gender issues in economic growth, agriculture and trade programming. She guides organizational change efforts on gender integration for a number of institutions and is co-author of the “Assessing How Agricultural Technologies can change Gender Dynamics and Food Security Outcomes” developed under the USAID-funded Integrating Gender and Nutrition within Agricultural Extension Services (INGENAES) project.

Melissa Matlock
Project Manager, Connexus Corporation
Read Bio

Melissa is a gender and finance specialist at Connexus where she manages and provides support to programs and new business development. She has designed and conducted trainings and technical assistance on several topics, including gender and social inclusion, youth-appropriate financial services, and agricultural value chain finance. Previously she served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Costa Rica. She holds a MSc with Distinction in Gender, Development, and Globalisation from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Mona McCord
Director, Innovation in Agriculture
Read Bio

Mona has over 12 years’ experience developing and implementing agriculture and food security programs. At Grameen Foundation, Mona drives the innovation in agriculture strategy and oversees engagements with a range of public, private and government partners to develop new approaches to reaching the poor. Mona holds a Master’s degree in International Agriculture Development from University of California, Davis and served as a small enterprise development volunteer with the Peace Corps in Mali.

Paul McNamara
Director, AgReach
Read Bio

Paul McNamara brings over 20 years of international development experience to AgReach where he oversees a $22 million portfolio of international agricultural extension development activities spanning four continents funded by USAID and DFID. Dr. McNamara is an associate professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in international economics, agriculture and nutrition. He has widely published on rural development, nutrition and health, and extension in leading journals and publications.

Luis Alejandro Mejia
Lead Investment Officer, IDB Invest
Read Bio

Luis is the Advisory Services Lead in Central America and Lead Investment Officer at IDB Invest where he oversees pioneering investments in carbon markets and climate finance focused on mitigation in land use, forestry, agroforestry, renewable energy and transport sectors. He has extensive experience with multilateral banks, private banks and corporate agribusinesses, and international NGOs, managing projects creating sustainable agriculture. Luis has an MBA with a focus on Sustainable Development and a minor in Industry and Technology.

Carlos Melo
Guatemala Country Representative, IDB
Read Bio

Carlos has served as the IDB Representative in Guatemala since 2017. Throughout his 30-year career of promoting economic and social development in Latin America and the Caribbean, he has formulated and managed a portfolio of over US$ 20 billion in sectors such as infrastructure, health, and finance. He has won numerous awards including the Rio de Janeiro Prize, Bavela Bairro Urban Development Program and is also a "Grand Master of the Order of Simón Bolívar."

Rafael Merchan
Livelihoods Coordinator, Catholic Relief Services (CRS)
Read Bio

Rafael Merchan is a development practitioner with over 10 years of experience specializing in agriculture, food security, and nutrition. He is currently the CRS Livelihoods Coordinator for a food security and nutrition project in the Guatemalan Western Highlands. Previously, he was an agriculture program manager in Afghanistan and a fellow in Malawi. He holds a MPA in Development Practice from Columbia University, and a B.S in Agricultural and Resource Economics from the University of Maryland.

Alefia Merchant
Guatemala Feed the Future Coordinator, USAID/Guatemala
Read Bio

Alefia Merchant is the Feed the Future Coordinator for USAID/Guatemala. Alefia joined USAID in 2010 and served in Pakistan, Nigeria, and Thailand as an Agriculture Development Officer. Previously, Alefia worked on food security analysis, and value chain and micro-enterprise development with the FAO, ACDI/VOCA, and others.
Alefia received her B.A. from New York University and a dual M.A. in Natural Resources and Sustainable Development from the University for Peace in Costa Rica and American University.

Gerson Morales
Agriculture Program Management Specialist, USAID/Guatemala
Read Bio

Gerson joined USAID/Guatemala´s Agriculture team as a Program Management Specialist in 2016. Gerson is passionate about agriculture and the economic growth of this sector. He has led agriculture development programs for international organizations such as The World Wildlife Fund and the Neumann Stiftung Foundation. He holds a Master´s Degree in International Finance and Economics from Brandeis University and a B.S. in Agriculture from Zamorano University in Honduras. Gerson Morales grew up in rural Guatemala.

Julia Navarro is an Agriculture Specialist focused on Latin America at the World Bank’s Global Food and Agriculture Global Practice. She provides technical and operational support for the implementation of World Bank-funded projects. Prior to joining the World Bank, she worked for the Swiss Development Cooperation in Central America on agriculture-related initiatives. Julia has also worked with the private sector and academic institutions. Julia holds an MSc in Agricultural Economics from Purdue University.

Asdrubal Negrete
Chief of Party, Colombia Rural Finance Initiative, Chemonics International
Read Bio

Asdrubal Negrete is the Chief of Party of the Colombia Rural Finance Initiative. He oversaw the financial services team as Deputy Chief of Party/Senior Financial Services Specialist for two years. Asdrubal brings private sector expertise in microfinance, credit risk analysis, financial inclusion, and financial services information systems. Previously, Mr. Negrete worked in Colombia’s financial sector, most recently at Opportunity International, where he spearheaded business operations and portfolio development and managed an annual microfinance portfolio of $38 million.

Manuel Oliva
Acting Director, Development Resources and Disaster Assistance Division, USDA FAS
Read Bio

Manuel Oliva is the Acting Director of the Development Resources and Disaster Assistance Division within the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service. As part of his duties Mr. Oliva overseas the planning, implementation and evaluation of the division’s portfolio of agriculture focused development projects globally.

Camilo Pagés
Director of Operations & Co-Founder, Sistema Biobolsa
Read Bio

Camilo Pagés is Director of Operations and co-founder of Sistema Biobolsa. He has a particular interest in designing and promoting the sustainable management of small and medium-sized units of productive livestock through the transfer of renewable energy technologies and responsible water use. Camilo has a background in management and administration with specialization in social marketing and entrepreneurship of companies with high social and environmental impact.

Oscar Pammo
Chief Financial Officer, Sembrar Sartawi IFD
Read Bio

Oscar Pammo is CFO of Sembrar Sartawi IFD, a financial institution focused on providing financial services and microloans to small farmers in Bolivia. He is also partner of assessment firm AAF, specialized in microfinance. Oscar’s expertise is in financial intermediation, microfinance business and regulation of financial institutions. He has worked in Latin America and Africa, and in regulatory bodies in Bolivia. He holds degrees in Commercial Engineering and Business Finance.

Judy Payne
Consultant, Digital Solutions for Agriculture
Read Bio

Judy Payne is an independent consultant helping USAID missions use digital tools to increase their reach and impact. She served as USAID's Digital Solutions Advisor for Agriculture until 2017. She has designed and managed public-private partnerships related to ICT and agriculture service delivery. Prior to USAID, Judy worked for over 25 years in the US private sector. Judy holds a BA from Stanford University, a Masters degree from Harvard and was a Fulbright Scholar.

Sean Peters
CEO, DryGro
Read Bio

Sean Peters is CEO of DryGro, an agriculture technology company that is growing a replacement crop for soy for use in animal feed. This crop can grow on arid land using very little water, at production rates 10x-20x greater than soy production per hectare. Sean holds an MBA from Said Business School, Oxford University, and currently splits his time between Kenya and the UK.

Linda Pfeiffer
President & CEO, INMED Partnerships for Children
Read Bio

Linda Pfeiffer is founder, president and CEO of INMED Partnerships for Children, a nonprofit international humanitarian organization that has transformed the lives of millions of children and families in over 100 countries since 1986. INMED’s work in climate-smart agriculture has led to an innovative, scalable aquaponics system using inexpensive and locally accessible materials to provide year-round fresh food and revenues for families, small-scale farmers, individuals with disabilities, communities, schools, businesses and government institutions.

Cara Raboanarielina
Regional Technical Advisor, Agriculture and Livelihoods, Catholic Relief Services (CRS)
Read Bio

Dr. Cara Raboanarielina is a Regional Technical Advisor for Agriculture and Livelihoods for Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in Lusaka, Zambia. She supports CRS programs in southern Africa on learning for agricultural livelihoods, evaluation of service delivery, and agro-enterprise development. Cara’s work seeks to close the gap between research and development to promote program excellence. Cara worked in applied research for over 15 years focusing on collective action for value chain innovations, NRM, and resource livelihoods.

Jonathan Randall
Global Practice Lead for Climate Change, DAI
Read Bio

For the past 18 years, Mr. Randall has worked at the intersection of climate change, economic development, and environmental conservation in developing countries. Mr. Randall has a range of expertise in environmental management, disaster recovery, climate resiliency, and climate-smart agriculture. He has supported the development and launch of several initiatives, including the Executive Order on Climate Resilient International Development, Tropical Forest Alliance 2020, USAID/Nepal freshwater biodiversity and climate change program, and WWF-American Red Cross Partnership.

Robert Ryan-Silva
Director, DAI Maker Lab, DAI
Read Bio

Rob Ryan-Silva is the Director of the DAI Maker Lab, which builds hardware and capacity around hardware in support of the international development projects that DAI implements around the world.

Amanda Rycerz
Climate Risk Analyst, Acclimatise
Read Bio

Amanda Rycerz has five years’ experience in climate vulnerability, risk and resilience focused on North America, and a background in climate communications. Acclimatise founded in 2004, is a specialist advisory and analytics firm providing word-class expertise in climate risk management. The team has successfully completed 400 climate change adaptation projects for clients across a range of business and public sectors in nearly 80 countries.

Laura Sabogal
Consultant, Micro Energy International
Read Bio

Laura Sabogal has over two years of experience at MEI, Berlin Germany. She supports financial institutions in various stages of the implementation of green energy credit programmes across Latin America and internationally. MicroEnergy International GmbH is a globally acting German consulting company specialized in the development of energy services in regions with poor infrastructure and low income.

Axel Villalobos
Read Bio


Garrett Schiche
Director for Program Quality, Lutheran World Relief
Read Bio

Garrett Schiche is the Director for Program Quality at Lutheran World Relief (LWR). In his role, Garrett oversees a team that ensures high quality pDirector for Program Quality, Lutheran World Reliefrogramming and maximum impact through the integration of resilience, monitoring and evaluation, knowledge management, gender, and ICT4D best practices. Garrett has been with LWR for nearly six years and previously worked with the Peace Corps, American Red Cross and Catholic Relief Services.

Pamela Schreier
Regional Sustainability Manager, South America, Ecom Agroindustrial
Read Bio

Pamela Schreier is the Regional Sustainability Manager for Ecom Agroindustrial in South America. She began her career in sustainable economic development in the Peace Corps working with a cooperative of bee keepers. She has spent the last 5 years successfully implementing sustainable partnerships within the chocolate industry as well as development organizations to leverage resources and continuously improve services provided to cocoa producers in effort to create resilient and sustainable supply chains.

Augustin Sebakambwe
Finance & Agribusiness Specialist, USAID Huguka Dukore, Connexus Corporation
Read Bio

Mr. Augustin Sebakambwe is a Finance and Agribusiness Specialist on USAID/Rwanda's Huguka Dukore Project. Previously, he served as the Ngoma 22 Project Coordinator on the World Bank-funded SPIU RSSP-LWH projects and worked as a Loan and Rural Finance Officer for UNGUKA Bank Ltd. He has worked with public and private sectors locally and internationally, including agro-dealers, traders, and buyers. Augustin holds a MSc in Agricultural Economics from Wageningen University and a BA in Economics Sciences.

Alfredo Sfeir
Founder & CEO, ShellCatch Chile
Read Bio

Alfredo is Shellcatch's Founder and CEO. He created the world's first artisanal-based traceability and fish fraud monitoring service in Chile in 2008 and is now implementing electronic monitoring platforms in four countries. Shellcatch’s technology is fully focused on creating transparency in the sector by digitizing all fishing activity. Shellcatch’s mobile app is being deployed to over 12 thousand fishers, its bycatch camera system is on over 400 vessels, and ShellCatch is currently implementing new cutting-edge mobile and video apps.

Bryan Sobel
Agriculture and Livelihoods Technical Advisor, Catholic Relief Services
Read Bio

Bryan Sobel is a Technical Adviser for Agriculture and Livelihoods. He works to promote a culture of data appreciation, adaptive management, and evaluative thinking to explore and think critically about our assumptions. He draws from an extensive experience in many production agriculture paradigms and value chain upgrading activities. He enjoys collecting data and reporting the results to inform all stakeholders involved.

Carmen Tedesco
Geographer, DAI
Read Bio

Carmen Tedesco has 15 years’ experience as a geographer, specializing in human-environment interrelationships, geospatial technologies, and climate change. She combines strong knowledge management skills in natural resource management with experience in community-based mapping, spatial planning, and climate services. She is a translator of technology, assisting others in finding innovative solutions through the use of spatial tools and visualizations. She has multiple degrees in geography.

Christian Thierfelder
Senior Cropping Systems Agronomist
Read Bio

Christian Thierfelder is a Senior Cropping Systems Agronomist specializing in Conservation Agriculture (CA) systems research with CIMMYT. He is based in Harare, Zimbabwe and covers the whole southern African region. He has conducted applied and strategic research to adapt CA to the needs and environments of smallholder farmers in southern Africa. He guided the research of 30 Bsc, MSc and PhD students, and published more than 55 research articles in peer-reviewed high-impact journals and books.

Macani Toungara
Senior Director, Program Development, TechnoServe
Read Bio

Macani Toungara is Director of Program Development at the international nonprofit TechnoServe. She leads global strategic engagement with partners such as the Gates Foundation, U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.K. Department for International Development; oversees responses to major solicitations; and leads TechnoServe’s private-public partnership strategy. With expertise in supply chains, SME development and job creation, Macani has led TechnoServe to secure over $45M for programs increasing incomes for the poor and developing inclusive market systems.

Daniele Tricarico
Insights and Publications Lead, mAgri and mHealth Programmes, GSMA
Read Bio

Daniele leads the insights and publications work stream for the mAgri and mHealth programmes at the GSMA. He is responsible for delivering intelligence and analysis via publications and case studies on the opportunities within the mAgri and mHealth sectors. He also coordinates monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL) and user experience (UX) research to support programme partners. Recently, Daniele has focused on identifying opportunities for digitising agricultural value chains in developing countries.

Marie-Soleil Turmel
Regional Technical Advisor in Soil Science
Read Bio

Marie-Soleil Turmel is an Agronomist/Soil Scientist with 15 years of experience conducting research and extension. Marie is currently a Regional Technical Advisor in Soil Science for Catholic Relief Services. Her work integrates research and extension activities to promote soil health improving practices for smallholder farmers in the dry corridor of Central America and Mexico. She previously worked as an Associate Scientist for both CIMMYT and Bioversity International and has a Ph.D. from McGill University, Canada.

Cristobal Villanueva
Sustainable Cattle Lead, CATIE
Read Bio

Cristóbal has worked with CATIE in the Livestock and Environmental Management Group since 2002. His areas of interest include biophysical, socioeconomic, and environmental diagnosis of livestock farms, livestock productivity, biodiverse silvpastora systes and participatory training methodologies to increase the adoption of innovations in farms. Cristóbal holds a Masters from CATIE in Tropical Agroforestry with a focus on silvopastoral systems.

Renee Vuillaume
Program Officer, Global Knowledge Initiative
Read Bio

Renee leads the agriculture innovation portfolio at GKI. She has worked extensively in East Africa on challenges related to post-harvest food loss, digital extension services, and market access. Renee has a B.S. in Business Administration and a Master in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Prior to GKI, she worked as a quantitative researcher at the Institute for Health Research and Policy and as an economic development Peace Corps Volunteer in Uganda.

This conference is organized by Connexus Corporation