Jacob Shapiro

Jacob Logan Shapiro is the Director of Analysis for Geopolitical Futures (GPF). At GPF he oversees a team of analysts, the company’s forecasting process and the day-to-day analysis of important geopolitical developments. Prior to working at GPF, Shapiro worked at Stratfor, the geopolitical intelligence firm founded by George Friedman in 1996. He joined GPF after Friedman left Stratfor in May 2015 to help found a new company dedicated to publishing excellent analysis and accurate forecasts based on the geopolitical method Friedman pioneered. Shapiro is a regular speaker at international conferences and has appeared both in print and on television as an expert on international affairs in such places as MSNBC, CNBC, the New York Times, and Fox News. He holds a Master’s degree from Oxford University, where he won an award for his dissertation on the link between philosophy and mysticism in 20th century Jewish thought. Shapiro also holds a BA from Cornell University in Near Eastern Studies. Based in Austin, Shapiro splits his time between living in Texas and traveling the world.

Lisa Prassack

President, Prassack Advisors, LLC

With over 20 years in emerging tech markets and in-the-trenches agriculture experience, Lisa merges grower workflow with data science to enable informed farm and supply chain decisions. With a “boots on the ground” perspective, her team manages 175+ research fields using Precision Ag software and sensors in row and fixed crop. Recent efforts driving digital strategy in traceability; sustainability and business models that work across the global food supply chain. Lisa has held leadership roles at Booz & Co, DoubleClick, GE, HP, Lexmark and Trimble. She received a BS, Computer Science Penn State and attended the University of Chicago Booth School. A highly popular speaker on innovation and technology in AgTech and FoodTech, she has presented at conferences and events around the globe. Learn more about Lisa and her team at www.prassackadvisors.com

Murad Al-Katib

President and Chief Executive Officer, AGT Food and Ingredients Inc.
Director, Arctic Gateway Group

Murad Al-Katib, President, CEO and Board member of AGT Food and Ingredients Inc. An international agri-food commodity trading strategic business and financial thinker, Murad founded AGT Foods in 2001, building a Canadian start-up into a global billion dollar value-added pulses, staple foods and ingredient company. Murad also serves as a Director of Arctic Gateway Group.

Murad serves as Chair of the Government of Canada National Agri-Food Strategy Roundtable, on the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada Board and as the Economic Development Regina Board Chair. Past Boards include the CSCA, Pulse Canada and a number of Canadian Government advisory boards and panels.

John Ibbitson

The world’s population is shrinking. This disruption has far-reaching consequences—and benefits.  Awward-winning journalist and #1 bestselling author of Empty Planet.

From the ways that our environments affect birth rates, to the negative and positive implications of a smaller global population, John Ibbitson, a Governor General’s Award-winning writer and speaker, addresses the most pressing global issues of the day. A #1 bestselling author and Writer at Large for The Globe and Mail, Ibbitson is a grounded and compelling voice who speaks to the most important factors influencing human life: declining populations, immigration, and the environment, and how our work and lifestyles will be changed in relation to these things. In his optimistic, scrupulously researched talks, Ibbitson shows us how to position ourselves to successfully navigate these coming demographic shifts—with an openness that is more critical to our survival than ever.

Li Ivy
Ivy Li is an independent analyst of Chinese Ag market. Her reports are being subscribed by several international trading houses and global grain and oilseed companies. 
She is also a broker selling Canadian crops, specifically wheat, pea and barley, to China. Ivy has been working as an Ag analyst for 14 years since she joined the CWB Beijing Office in 2005. She worked in the office for 10 years.  She has a bachelor’s degree in English Literature and a second one in journalism.
Kevin Garinger

B.Ed., M.A.Ed., E.D.D. (in progress)

Kevin C. Garinger lives in Humboldt, Saskatchewan. He is the CEO/Director of Education, for a geographically large school division where the central office is located in Humboldt. Kevin was born in Flin Flon, MB and grew up in northern Saskatchewan and Alberta and has been a teacher, a principal, and an associate superintendent in the three provinces prior to his current role. He has three adult boys and is the proud grandfather of baby, Kyla Lee.

Director of Agronomy
Fall Line Capital

For almost 25 years Scott was an Ag Rep and Crop Diversification Specialist for Manitoba Agriculture. In 2011 he helped start an Agricultural Investment and Management firm. Fall Line Capital invests in Farmland across the USA and new Ag Technologies. Scott has direct farming experience across North America, in Australia, Europe & the Former Soviet Union. Scott has won numerous awards for his ag extension work and promotion of conservation agriculture including Canada’s “Zero-till Farmer of the Year” and “Conservation Farm of the Year”. Scott is a regular speaker at international ag conferences such as “AgriTechnica” in Germany, “Crop World” in England, and the “World’s Fair” in Italy. Recently, he spoke at Ag Days and other events in North America.

Chief Market Analyst
FarmLink Marketing Solutions

Neil Townsend acquired his Masters of Science in Agricultural Economics from the University of Manitoba in 2002. He has spent his career writing market commentary for farmers over the last twenty years through his work with CWB, Cargill, G3 and his current role as Chief Market Analyst at FarmLink Solutions. Neil’s explorations of insights from around the world took him to live and work with farmers in Thailand for three years to see global impacts first hand. He now resides in Winnipeg with his wife and three sons.

Tom Otsby

Tom Ostby resides in Dagmar, Montana where he manages his own personal farming interests.  He previously worked with Australian based Lachstock Consulting before moving to Geneve, Switzerland to head the wheat and barley research for a global trading company there. In 2018 he took the opportunity to return home to farm, and joined back up with Lachstock Consulting to head their research platform for their hedging and advisory services.  

Kristjan Hebert

Global Ag Risk Solutions

Managing Partner Hebert Grain Ventures

Dedicated to practicing and promoting excellence in farming.

Kristjan Hebert was born and raised a farmer. He left the family farm briefly to get his commerce degree at the University of Saskatchewan, as well as a stint at Meyers Norris Penny while obtaining his CPA, but returned to his pursue his passion for farming.

Senior Market Analyst
FarmLink Marketing Solutions

Jonathon Driedger grew up on the family farm near Grunthal, MB. He attended the University of Manitoba where he obtained a BSc in Agribusiness and an MSc in Agricultural Economics.

Prior to joining FarmLink Marketing Solutions, Jon spent time in the livestock feed industry, and then came to the grain industry as an Economist for the Winnipeg Commodity Exchange and later as a Commodity Risk Management Consultant with a major U.S.-based futures brokerage firm. He currently leads up the HedgeLink program and is often seen around western Canada giving market outlooks or conducting workshops on hedging and futures.