Board of Directors
Reg Clause is the fourth generation to manage the Clause Family Farm Jefferson, Iowa. The operation raises corn, soybeans, cattle and grandkids.
Reg volunteers as a board member for the Global Farmer Network and is currently serving as Chairman. Reg has extensive experience in business consulting, specializing in business development including feasibility studies, business planning and financial structuring for clients as diverse as biofuels, wineries, meat processing, niche marketing and many more. His work has allowed him to travel extensively around the world to conduct in-depth analysis of agricultural production systems.
Bill Horan grows corn, soybeans and other grains with his brother on a family farm based in North Central Iowa. Bill volunteers as a board member for the Global Farmer Network.
Carol has worn many hats in the food and agricultural industry over her life. But her passion has always revolved around beef cattle and mentoring the next generation of agricultural leaders, therefore playing a part in shaping policy affecting food, agriculture and business management on both the National and International levels. Carol and her family called Illinois home for the majority of her career, but her scope of leadership and involvement has been anything but local.
Carol now focuses on current issues of interest to our Global Farmer Network relative to innovation, sustainability and valued trade of red meat and other livestock products. She is currently serving as secretary.
Raised on the Saskatchewan prairies, Cherilyn Jolly-Nagel and her husband David continue their love for the land while growing grains, pulses, oilseed crops, along with two daughters in Mossbank. Elected as the first female President for the Western Canadian Wheat Growers Association, Cherilyn challenged government policies that affected the business of agriculture and is a leader on issues that impact farmers on grain transportation, governance, trade and public trust. As board member for the Global Farmer Network, Cherilyn advocates for strong global trade relations and for farmers use of technological advancements. In 2021, Cherilyn was recognized as one of Canada’s Top 50 People of Influence in Agriculture. Cherilyn was interviewed in the documentary ‘License to Farm’ where she encouraged other farmers to share their stories with the public, was featured with Canadian Chef Michael Smith in a video to promote lentils and featured in an episode of Canadian Better Living on the topic of pesticide use and promotion of plant biotechnology. Invited by the Mattel Toy company, Cherilyn was a mentor in the ‘Barbie: You Can Be Anything Mentorship’ program for young girls who dream of being a farmer.
Daniel grows corn and soybeans in partnership with his brothers and son. Long history with agriculture cooperative systems, providing leadership to GROWMARK and CoBank.
Joanna Lidback volunteers as a board member and treasurer for the Global Farmer Network, and has been recognized by the GFN as a 2021 Kleckner Award for Global Farm Leadership award recipient. She is a dairy farmer, a Chief Financial Officer, a business consultant, a mom, and a wife. Joanna and her husband own and operate the Farm at Wheeler Mountain in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont, USA. It’s an 80-cow herd of Holsteins and Jerseys, where they also raise their own replacements and have a small beef cattle herd. Joanna is CFO at ADK Farms, where they take care of over 7,500 dairy cows and steward over 8,000 acres of land. She is also the principal consultant at Adirondack Management Services, coaching 10 other dairy farms toward reaching their own goals.
John Rigolizzo, Jr. is a fifth generation farmer, previously raising 1,400 acres of fresh vegetables and field corn in southern New Jersey. The family farm now raises 70 acres of field corn and John advises local farmers on growing and marketing retail vegetables. John volunteers as a board member for the Global Farmer Network and has provided leadership to the Farmland Preservation Board, the Vegetable Growers Association of New Jersey and New Jersey Tomato Council. As a former New Jersey Farm Bureau President, his interest and long-time support of free trade was supported by his involvement in 11 international trade missions and engagement in World Trade Organization meetings in Seattle and Geneva.
Farming in West Liberty, Iowa, Mark Heckman volunteers as a board member for the Global Farmer Network and is currently serving on the Animal Ag and Environment Committee for Iowa Corn, and as Advisor for the US Grains Council. He and his family partnership farm about 1,500 acres of corn and soybeans with a focus on soil health. The family farm also includes pork and cattle production. Heckman Farms uses technology that supports the sustainable use of hog and cattle manure while maintaining water quality standards and good relationships with his neighbors.
Mark is focused on improving sustainable production of food, feed, and fuel, and off-the-farm is a Senior Regulatory Consultant for EcoEngineers of Des Moines, Iowa. Mark is a past member of the Soil Health Partnership and has dedicated much of his career assisting producers and companies focus on specialty markets and renewable fuels. He also has expertise in Strategic Risk Management, Commodity and Energy Procurement, Policy Development, and Raw Material Exposure Coverage.
Mark Wagoner is a third generation family farmer in southeast Washington State where they grow alfalfa seed for four major seed companies. Relying on the alkali bee, a native ground nesting bee, and leafcutter bees for pollination, Mark works with the National Alfalfa and Forage Alliance and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to insure that safe and effective insecticides are available for use during bee flight.
Mark volunteers as a board member for the Global Farmer Network and numerous other boards addressing water and land use issues. He has been appointed to the Washington State Department of Ecology Walla Walla Valley 2050 Committee, a planning group to improve water availability in the Valley. He works diligently to develop and implement coexistence strategies for producing conventional, organic and genetically enhanced alfalfa.
Paul Temple volunteers as a board member for the Global Farmer Network and farms in the north of England in the United Kingdom. The farm practices conservation agriculture on a mixed beef and arable family farm. Paul grows wheat for seed, barley, oilseed rape, vining peas and beans. They’ve recently added grass leys back into the arable rotation. On the beef side they utilise a wide range of environmental grasses with suckler cattle, rearing calves that are either fattened or sold as stores. Additionally, the farm is in a high level environmental scheme with educational access.
Roberto Peiretti is a fourth-generation farmer, with the fifth generation also engaged in the family farm, located in central Argentina where they grow corn, soybeans, wheat, barley, oats, sorghum and sunflowers on eight thousand hectares. With 25% to 35% of the farm double-cropped each year, they are also able to regularly incorporate some pulses and oats as a cover crop annually. Trained as an agronomist, Roberto is a leader in No-Till agriculture systems, on their farm and as an advisor and engineer working nationally and internationally.
Roberto Peiretti volunteers as a board member for the Global Farmer Network and was a founding member of AAPRESID (Argentinian No Till Farmers Association) and CAAPAS (American Confederation of No Till Farmers Associations). Roberto was one of twenty-seven farmers that founded Bioceres, an agriculture-related biotechnology company. He is actively engaged in the World Association of Soils and Water Conservation (WASWAC) and was recognized as the WASWAC Distinguished Extensions Award in 2016.
Tim grows corn, seed corn, soybeans and produces pork. Has been very involved with Mississippi River lock improvements and has traveled to Brazil to research their river, rail and road infrastructure changes. Tim volunteers as a board member for the Global Farmer Network and is currently serving as Vice Chairman.
Ted raises lettuce, cotton, tomatoes, onions, pistachios, wine grapes and garlic on a family farm. Chairman of Horizon Growers (pistachios). Long-standing interest and investment in water availability and quality. Received Innovative Water Conservation Award.
Terry Wanzek is a fourth generation North Dakota farmer. This family partnership raises spring wheat, corn, soybeans, barley, dry edible beans and sunflowers. Terry was elected to serve as a North Dakota State Senator, providing leadership to the agriculture committee and serving as Senate President Pro Tempore.
Terry volunteers as a board member for the Global Farmer Network and continues to provide leadership to the National Association of Wheat Growers and the NoDak Mutual Insurance. He has a degree in Business Administration and Accounting from Jamestown College and completed the Texas A & M Executive Program for Agricultural Producers.
On a sixty acre farm, Ravi grows Rice, Sugarcane, Cotton and pulses. To utilize water judiciously during summer months, he uses sprinklers and drip system. Has added mechanization to address labor shortage; 12 employees. Kleckner Award winner – 2013.
Dr. Channa S. Prakash, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) at Tuskegee University (USA) where he has served on faculty since 1989, is professor of crop genetics, biotechnology. Dr. Prakash is a leading proponent of science-based agricultural development, especially in the use of molecular techniques including genetically modified crops and genome engineering. His lab was among the first to develop transgenic sweet potato and peanut plants and conduct pioneering genomic studies on the peanut.
Dr. Prakash has been a global leader in enhancing the societal awareness of crop and food biotechnology issues around the world for nearly three decades. Dr. Prakash was recognized for his outstanding work: 2015 Borlaug CAST Communication Award, recognized by Huffington Post as among the Top 30 social influencers in biopharma and biotech. He is globally ranked as number #1 influencer on ‘agricultural biotechnology’ issues.
Gilbert arap Bor grows corn (maize), vegetables and dairy cows on a small-scale farm of 25 acres in Kapseret, near Eldoret, Kenya. Dr Bor is also a lecturer of marketing and management at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa, Eldoret campus. Gilbert received the 2011 GFN Kleckner Global Farm Leader award and volunteers as a member of the Global Farmer Network Advisory Council.
Maria ‘Pilu’ Giraudo is a mom and 5th generation farmer who with her family utilizes a no-till system to grow soy, wheat, barley, corn and sorghum, as well as livestock in Santa Fe Province, Argentina. Trained as an Agricultural Engineer, Pilu is the Honorary President of Aapresid (Argentine No-Till Farmers Association) and a member of the Global Farmer Network Advisory Council. She is actively involved in several national and international NGOs focused on sustainable agriculture initiatives and advocacy. Included in her advocacy is a weekly radio program, hosted by rural women, who share stories from their farms and lives every Saturday. Pilu worked for two years in support of Sustainable Development Policies for the Ministry of AgroIndustry in Argentina and in 2016 was recognized as the Global Farmer Network Kleckner Award recipient.
Rob Horsch spent his entire career as an agricultural research and development specialist discovering, developing and deploying agricultural innovations that improve the welfare of farmers and consumers while protecting the environment and supporting broad, equitable economic growth and poverty reduction. His career has included building a billion-dollar portfolio of grants at the Gates Foundation and leading Monsanto’s plant tissue culture and transformation efforts that led to improved crops grown by millions of farmers around the world. He received the National Medal of Technology from President Clinton, was appointed to the United Nations Millennium Project Task Force on Hunger and awarded Monsanto’s highest award for science and technology.
Mary Boote serves as Chief Executive Officer of the Global Farmer Network. Raised on a Northwest Iowa dairy, pork, corn, and soybean family farm, she had the privilege of serving as agriculture adviser to Iowa Governor Terry E. Branstad from 1997-1999.
Through the Global Farmer Network, Mary works with farmers around the world to develop and deliver communication platforms that engage the farmers’ perspective and voice as an integral part of the dialogue regarding the global agri-food system. The mission: To amplify the farmers’ voice in promoting trade, technology, sustainable farming, economic growth, and food security.
Named as one of the Worldview 100: Global Industry’s top 100 Visionaries and Leaders in Biotechnology by Scientific American Worldview in 2015, Mary has had the opportunity to travel internationally, serving on agriculture leadership missions that focused on issues as varied as instruction on strategic planning and personal representation for privatized agriculturalists in newly independent countries to learning more about smallholder maize projects to observing the trade negotiation process at the World Trade Organization.
Mary attended Northwestern College, Orange City, Iowa and was privileged to participate in the 2009 Harvard AgriBusiness Seminar.
A staff member at the GFN, Jane resides on a corn and soybean farm in Eastern Nebraska. She brings 20+ years of sales and marketing program development and deployment, project management and leadership experience. She thrives on finding solutions and working in a virtual environment.
President, Borlaug Foundation; Vice President for External Affairs and Public Relations, Invaio Sciences.
For 18 years, Julie Borlaug has successfully worked in international agricultural development, agricultural communications, external and corporate relations. As granddaughter of Dr. Norman Borlaug, she works to champion his legacy and lend a voice to his desire to see more successful collaborative partnerships across sectors and scientific disciplines to bring better and faster innovation to end hunger.
Gina Gutierrez is serving as Community Outreach Agvocate for the Global Farmer Network. She is a 5th generation dairy farmer from the central region of Mexico. In 2015, Gina started a Facebook page advocating for the dairy industry. La Vida Lactea now has nearly 60,000 followers. She completed a Master’s Degree in Corporate Law. She writes regularly for Ganadero and Holstein de Mexico magazine. In 2018, Gina won the Global Farmer Network’s Kleckner Award.
Elly Sukup serves as Global Farmer Network’s Director of Programs and as the Food Security Technical Officer for Mercy Corps where she supports gender, youth, and social inclusion activities under IDEAL, a USAID-funded food security learning award. Before joining GFN and Mercy Corps, Elly managed the Clinton Foundationâ€™s community nutrition program in Malawi and spent two years with the UN World Food Program in Ghana and Ethiopia. She also worked for Iowa State University as Strategic Engagement Coordinator and as a lecturer in Global Resource Systems. She studied Public Service and Administration in Agriculture and International Agriculture at Iowa State University, and has a Masters degree in Social Anthropology of Development from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London.
Keith Eckel raises vegetables and grains in Pennsylvania. Keith was elected chairman of the Nationwide Mutual board of Directors and served as president of the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau from 1981-1996. He was named a Pennsylvania Master Farmer in 1982 and Outstanding Young Farmer in 1983.
Craig Lang of Brooklyn, Iowa served as President of Iowa Farmer Bureau from 2001 through 2011. Lang is actively engaged on a family farm that manages a 400-cow dairy herd and tills 1,000 acres of cropland.
Bill Northey is a corn and soybean farmer from Northwest Iowa. Bill served as President of the National Corn Growers Association and as the Secretary of Agriculture for the State of Iowa. In February 2018 he was confirmed as the Under Secretary of Agriculture for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services at the US Department of Agriculture.
John Reifsteck operates a corn and soybean farm in western Champaign County, Illinois. He served on the Global Farmer Network Board of Directors, and is a former Chair. John currently serves as Chairman and President of the GROWMARK Board of Directors-a farm supply and marketing cooperative that operates principally in Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin and Ontario.
Bob Vice grows avocadoes in southern California. Bob Vice retired as President of the California Farm Bureau in 1997 after serving seven and a half years as Vice President and eight and a half years as President. During that time, Bob led trade missions to over forty countries in Europe, Asia, the former Soviet Union and South America.
Global Farmer Network
Meet farmers from around the world who are part of the Global Farmer Network