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Danesha Seth Carley is the Director for the NSF Center for Integrated Pest Management (CIPM), and the Center of Excellence for Regulatory Science in Agriculture (CERSA), both at NC State University. As an Associate Professor in Horticultural Science at NC State, Dr. Seth Carley’s research and outreach programs focus on sustainable managed landscapes. Recent projects include the restoration of historic Pinehurst No. 2 and No. 4 Golf Courses, and pollinator protection and habitat conservation. She has recently published her first book (Pollinator Gardening for the South: Creating Sustainable Habitats) on how to create beautiful pollinator-friendly gardens designed to welcome beneficial pollinators across the South. Combining up-to-date scientific information with artful design strategies, this information is accessible to gardeners of all levels. She is currently hard at work on her second book.

Susanne Kjemtrup is the principal consultant for Phyta BioTech Consulting, LLC, a consulting company specializing in workshop facilitation and strategic planning for start-ups, academia, and industry. She has worked in academic, start-up and large company settings in both technical and operational leadership roles. She relishes the challenge of scientific and strategic direction setting in both entrepreneurial or academic settings, using her strengths in critical thinking, talents as a people leader, and passion for community science education.

Her career in plant sciences spans both coasts, starting with a PhD in biology from University of California, San Diego in plant biology, and subsequent postdoctoral work at North Carolina State University and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she studied pathogens of plants. She has held leadership positions in the ag-biotech industry at both Paradigm Genetics in Research Triangle Park, NC, and Monsanto. She was named Fellow at Monsanto and as an adjunct faculty at NC State in the Department of Plant Biology and Microbiology, she contributes to curriculum development and regularly coaches students and post-docs about working in industry. 

Rodolphe Barrangou is the T. R. Klaenhammer Distinguished Professor at North Carolina State University. Barrangou is focusing on the characterization of CRISPR-Cas systems, and their applications in bacteria, especially for the study and development of probiotics, including for genotyping, phage resistance, screening, genome editing and antimicrobials. Rodolphe spent 9 years in R&D and M&A at Danisco and DuPont, and has been at NC State since 2013. For his CRISPR work, Rodolphe received several international awards, notably the Canada Gairdner International Award, and was elected into the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the National Academy of Inventors. Dr. Barrangou earned a BS in Biological Sciences from Rene Descartes University, France, a MS in Biological Engineering from the University of Technology in Compiegne, France, a MS in Food Science from NC State, a PhD in Genomics from NC State and a MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  Dr. Barrangou is also the former Chairman of the Board of Caribou Biosciences, a co-founder of Intellia Therapeutics, Locus Biosciences, TreeCo, Ancilia Biosciences and CRISPR Biotechnologies, an advisor to Inari Ag, Invaio, Provaxus, Felix Biotech, the IGI, and the Editor in Chief of the CRISPR Journal. 

Randy Deinhammer is currently Director of Regulatory Affairs at Novozymes North America, Inc., and is based in the Raleigh / Durham area in NC.  He has global regulatory responsibility for Novozymes’ bioagriculture business.  Randall has been with Novozymes for over 20 years and therein has contributed through a variety of scientific and leadership roles across several industries.  Randall holds a B.S. degree in Chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley and a PhD degree in Chemistry from Iowa State University.

Carrie Rogers is Program Manager at CERSA and CIPM. She organizes workshops and manages the internship program at CERSA and works on the communications team at CIPM. She has worked in nonprofits and aquatics programs in Raleigh, NC and is a graduate of NC State’s communications program.

Subray Hedge is the Director of Biotechnology Risk Analysis Programs,  Biotechnology Regulatory Services Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service at the USDA. 

Sharon Berberich is currently the Senior Director of Pipeline Management at Pluton Biosciences Inc. Experienced Ag Business and start-up C-Level Executive.  She has over 30 years experience in food and agriculture with a focus on executive leadership & strategy, business development, product development, marketing, licensing, venture capital investment, regulatory, intellectual property, and field operations. Background includes Monsanto Company, Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, Dow AgroSciences and multiple start-ups. Built and led the US Operations for Kaiima Bio Agritech, a subsidiary of an Israeli-based start-up.  Established a consulting business to serve the Ag Tech entrepreneurial community.  Her portfolio included serving as CEO of Plastomics, a plant biotechnology company, CEO for Impetus Agriculture, a start-up focused on biological insect control, and Business Development Lead for Aker Technologies a precision ag start-up as well as multinational companies, academic institutions, and other start-up companies as a mentor, board member, and business advisor.

Vera Bonardi Microbial Discovery Leader at Corteva. 

Karen Carr has experience in litigation and regulatory counseling, strategy, and advocacy, with a primary focus on products regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Karen advises on pathways to commercialization for new products and technologies, advertising and labeling, testing and reporting, data use and compensation disputes, and litigation relating to product approvals. Karen has specific expertise with the Plant Protection Act, the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard, the National Organic Program, the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA), and the Administrative Procedure Act.

B Pratyusha Chennupati has held various positions in the agricultural industry since 2012. B Pratyusha began her career as an Intern at A & L Biologicals Ltd, where she researched the potential of biofertilizers in corn production. In 2012, she also started working as a Research Assistant at McGill University, where she quantified relative gene expression of specific genes and prepared the lab for safety inspections. From 2014 to 2016, she worked at Inocucor Technologies Inc. as a Development Scientist, Principal Scientist, and Senior Development Scientist. In 2016, she was appointed as a Registration Specialist at Nufarm. In 2020, she joined Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada as a Member of the Canadian Agriculture Youth Council, and she is currently employed as a Regulatory Affairs Manager at Heliae.

Natasha Dixon is a Global Regulatory Policy Analyst in the Crop Division of Bayer. Natasha’s experience in Regulatory Affairs has been varied, as she has planned and executed regulatory strategies for both biological and chemical products. She is a member of the OECD Expert Group of Biopesticides and works with several industry associations including BIO, Biological Products Industry Alliance (BPIA), and Crop Life International to promote the development and usage of biological products around the globe.

Kellye Eversole is an expert in agricultural genomics, biotechnology, and information technology research and a leader in the development of international, pre-competitive multidisciplinary, industry-academic research consortia. She is the Executive of the International Alliance for Phytobiomes Research which is pioneering a holistic, systems approach to understanding the complex interactions between the biological and geophysical components of agricultural production systems and supporting the development of novel, site specific products for enhanced sustainability.  In addition to her work in genomics and convergent systems, Kellye advises public and private entities on regulations related to agricultural biotechnology/genetic engineering, microbial products, and plant protection products.  She is a faculty affiliate in the Ag Biology Department at Colorado State University and is on the scientific advisory board for Trace Genomics. She was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for her work in plant and microbial genomics and has published widely in top tier journals including multiple articles in Science and Nature. 

Annie Gutsche US Seeds Regulatory Policy lead at Corteva. 

Helen Harrison Regulatory Affairs Manager at Novozymes North America. 

Ariel Heminger Biologist at APHIS.

Jennifer Kuzma is the Goodnight-NCGSK Foundation Distinguished Professor in the School of Public and International Affairs, and co-founder and co-director of the Genetic Engineering and Society (GES) Center (, at NC State University. Prior to her current position, she was an associate professor at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota (2003-2013); study director at the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM); and an AAAS Risk Policy Fellow at the USDA. Kuzma has held several national and international leadership positions, including a member of the World Economic Forum Council on Technology, Values and Policy; the NASEM Committee on Preparing for Future Biotechnology, Society for Risk Analysis (SRA) Council Member and Secretary, FAO Expert Group on Food and Nanotechnology, Council of Agricultural Science and Technology Committee on Gene Editing, and the AAAS-ABA National Council of Scientists and Lawyers. In 2019 she was elected a lifetime Fellow of AAAS for her distinguished work in anticipatory governance of new technologies, and methods for oversight policy analysis. She has given over 200 invited talks and is interviewed frequently in the media for her expertise in biotechnology policy, including the New York Times, Science, The Scientist, Nature, NPR, Washington Post, Scientific American, BBC, PBS Nova, Wired, and ABC & NBC News. She earned her Ph.D. in biochemistry at UC-Boulder and did a postdoc in plant molecular biology at Rockefeller University.

Ellen Lentz Regulatory affairs specialist at Novozymes North America. 

Martha Malapi is a plant pathologist with more than 15 years of research and regulatory experience in academia and in the Federal Government. She recently joined the (USDA-APHIS) Biotechnology Regulatory Services (BRS) as a Branch Chief working on addressing potential plant pest risks of certain genetically engineered organisms to other plants in agriculture and to the environment. She received several awards for her work, including the USDA-APHIS-PPQ Outstanding Employee award and the MIT Innovator Under 35.  She received her Ph.D. from Texas A&M in Plant Pathology and her M.Sc. from UT Knoxville in the same field. 

Madeline Maynard is a recent graduate of North Carolina State University where she obtained a B. S. in Crop and Soil Sciences with concentration in crop biotechnology. She also received a minor in genetics and earned an undergraduate agricultural regulatory science certificate through NCSU’s CERSA program. She is currently completing an internship with CERSA in which she supports the USDA-FAS Trade Regulatory Capacity Building MRL division, focusing on risk communication in member economies throughout S. East Asia. Ms. Maynard is pursuing a full-time position with the FAS. 

Ashton Merck is a Postdoctoral Research Scholar in the Interdisciplinary Risk Sciences group at NC State University. Her research draws on the historical dimensions of risk governance to address emerging societal challenges in food and agriculture. Her work with STEPS will focus on engaging a diverse group of stakeholders to better understand and respond to their needs, perceptions, and concerns. Ashton earned a Ph.D. in History from Duke University in 2020, where she wrote her dissertation on the prospects of co-regulation in food safety since 1950. Before coming to NC State, she taught courses in regulation and public policy.

Lisa Ortego is a Senior Principal Scientist in Regulatory Environmental Safety at Bayer. Her focus is on ecotoxicology and risk assessment. She earned her Ph.D. in Pharmacology/Toxicology from the University of Mississippi. 

Kelly Patterson is the Manager of Regulatory Affairs at Ginkgo Bioworks. She earned her M.S. in Food Policy and Applied Nutrition from Tufts University. 

Adrian Percy is the inaugural Executive Director of the NC Plant Sciences Initiative (NC PSI) at North Carolina State University. He also is a Venture Partner at Finistere Ventures LLC, a technology and life sciences venture capital investor, focused on transforming the food value chain. Adrian serves on the board of directors of BioLumic, HiFidelity Genetics, and Evogene. He is a member of the science and technology boards of Oerth Bio, Terramera, Biotalys and Rothamsted Research and hosts the AgTech360 podcast on behalf of NC State’s Center for Excellence in Regulatory Science in Agriculture (CERSA). Prior to joining NC State, Adrian served as the Chief Technology Officer of UPL Ltd a major crop protection company that is a leader in global food systems. He was also the Head of Research and Development for the Crop Science division of Bayer and part of their executive committee. In that role, he had responsibility for internal and open innovation activities in the areas of crop protection chemistry and biologicals, as well as seeds and traits. During his 25-year tenure at Bayer and its legacy companies, he also held numerous positions in agricultural research and development in France, Germany, and the United States.

Folashade Sabitu Associate Director of Regulatory Science at Pivot Bio. 

Zachary Schultzhaus Biologist at the USDA.

Jake Teitelbaum Director of Operations & Business Development at Robigo. 

Mike Weeks is is Senior Registration Manager at Pivot Bio, and is based in Durham, NC. In his role, Mike is responsible for achieving U.S. and international product registrations for Pivot Bio’s microbial plant inoculants. Mike has worked in regulatory affairs for agricultural biotechnology for 14 years, with prior experience managing U.S. Federal registrations of GM field crops, insect resistance management programs, and field compliance for regulated field trials. Mike received his B.Sc. in Agronomy from North Carolina State University, and an M.Sc. in Crop and Soil Environmental Science from Virginia Tech. Mike is a native North Carolinian, growing up in eastern Wake County. 

Rebecca White has over 15 years of experience serving in diverse leadership roles in bioscience-based industries, including successfully pioneering efforts to commercialize algae as an agricultural crop. As a scientist with a strong business and communications background, she is experienced in both commercialization of novel plant-based products and technology transfer from lab to field, along with transformational organizational development and culture building. Rebecca has a Ph.D. in Microbiology from Texas A&M University and received her Honors B.Sc. degree from the University of North Texas.