Chairman of the Board, S&W Seed Company
Effective December 9, 2014, Mr. Harvey became Chairman of Board of Directors of S&W Seed Company. Mark Harvey has more than 35 years of experience in production processing and marketing of seed to many parts of the world, particularly branded alfalfa and clover. Mr. Harvey managed a 10,000 acre family farm producing seed, wheat and pulse crops, along with wool and beef, from 1976 until 1996 when the company he founded, Paramount Seeds, was sold to Elders Ltd. While with Elders, Mr. Harvey was manager of their national and international seed business from 1996 until 2001. In 2002, he was a founding member of Seed Genetics International where he focused primarily on marketing and distribution. Mr. Harvey was educated at Cunderdin Agricultural College in West Australia.
Grover T. Wickersham
Vice Chairman, S&W Seed Company
Mr. Wickersham served as S&W’s Chairman of the Board from October 2009 to December 2014. Mr. Wickersham is a private investor. For more than five years, Mr. Wickersham has also been retained as a consultant to Glenbrook Capital Management, a firm that serves as the general partner of a limited partnership that invests in public and private companies. Since its formation in May 2009, Mr. Wickersham has served as the Chairman of the Board of Triangle T Partners, LLC (“TTP”), a private entity that farms Central Valley farmland. In June 2010, he assumed the title of Chief Financial Officer of TTP. Until TTP dissolved its wholly-owned subsidiary in December 2010, Mr. Wickersham also served as Chairman of the Board and Chief Financial Officer of Triangle T Ranch, Inc. In addition, he serves as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Purisima Funds, Woodside, California.
Mr. Wickersham holds an A.B. from the University of California at Berkeley, an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and a J.D. from University of California, Hastings College of the Law.
Chief Executive Officer, S&W Seed Company
Mr. Wong was elected to our Board in December 2014 and named CEO in June 2017. He has more than 35 years of experience in agribusiness, with particular expertise in technology integration and commercialization. Mr. Wong was a founder and, since 2009, has been a partner of Colorado Financial Holdings (CFH), a private venture investment and investment bank that specializes in the agricultural, energy and biotechnology sectors. Since January 2012, Mr. Wong has served as Chairman of American Dairyco, Ponte Vedra, Florida, the owner and operator of dairies in Florida and Georgia, which is a venture jointly owned by CFH. Between 2008 and December 2015, he served either as Chairman of the Board or chief executive officer of Agrivida, a private company that is developing and commercializing high-performance products that incorporate novel, regulated proteins precisely engineered for specific applications in a variety of markets, including animal nutrition, bio-based fuels and chemicals and industrial enzymes. From January 2016 to February 2016, Mr. Wong served as Acting President and Chief Executive Officer of Arcadia Biosciences, Inc., a publicly-traded agricultural biotechnology trait company for which he also served on the board from May 2006 until February 2016. Mr. Wong was the Chief Executive Officer of Renewable Agricultural Energy Corporation, a private ethanol production company, from 2006 to 2007. Prior to that time, was the founder and, from 1999 to 2005, chief executive officer of Emergent Genetics, an international seed biotech company that was sold to Monsanto Company in 2005. Mr. Wong founded and managed a series of other agricultural and biotechnology companies, including Big Stone Partners, Agracetus Corporation, a plant biotechnology company that was sold to Monsanto and Agrigenetics Corporation, a seed and biotechnology company that was sold to Dow Chemical. Mr. Wong also worked as an engineer for FMC Corporation and Chemical Construction Corporation. Mr. Wong served as a director of BioFuel Energy Corp., a publicly traded corn ethanol company, from January 2008 until October 2014, and Chair from March 2010 to October 2014, when it was renamed Green Brick Partners following an acquisition and recapitalization transaction. Mr. Wong received his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Lehigh University and his M.B.A. from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
David A. Fischhoff
Monsanto Company, retired
Dr. Fischhoff was elected to our Board in December 2016. Dr. Fischhoff recently retired after a 33-year career with Monsanto Company. He is one of the founders of agricultural biotechnology. Dr. Fischhoff has experience in agricultural research and development across a broad range of technologies, product development and business development in areas including biotechnology, plant breeding, genomics, precision agriculture and data science. From 2002 to 2014, Dr. Fischhoff was Vice President for Technology Strategy and Development at Monsanto with responsibilities for scientific strategy, identification of new growth opportunities, assessment and acquisition of new technologies, and oversight of Monsanto’s research portfolio. Dr. Fischhoff is internationally recognized as a founder of agricultural biotechnology. He was responsible for the development of insect resistant transgenic crops (i.e., Bt crops), which today are a primary tool for insect control in corn, cotton and soybean in multiple countries. He is the co-inventor of the synthetic gene technology for expression of Bt genes in plants, which is the enabling technology for essentially all insect resistant crops today. Dr. Fischhoff served as the scientific expert in the acquisition by Monsanto of multiple biotech and seed companies, including Agracetus, Calgene, Ecogen, Dekalb and Asgrow. He initiated and led Monsanto’s plant genomics research program, and from 1998 to 2002 he was Co-President of Cereon Genomics LLC, a collaborative research venture between Monsanto and Millennium Pharmaceuticals; and he played leadership roles in the establishment and management of genomics research collaborations with Mendel Biotechnology, Paradigm Genetics and Ceres. Dr. Fischhoff most recently served from 2014 to 2016 as Chief Scientist of The Climate Corporation, a subsidiary of Monsanto that develops and provides digital agriculture products and services for farmers and currently serves as a consultant and advisor. He received his S.B. in Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. in Genetics and Molecular Biology from The Rockefeller University.
President and Founder of Proven Leader Advisory, LLC
Monsanto Company, retired
Ms. Madere is the President and Founder of Proven Leader Advisory, LLC, a management consulting and executive coaching firm. She serves as an independent, non-executive board director for Nutrien (NYSE: NTR) and is a member of the Nominations and Governance committee and the Safety, Health & Environment committee of the Nutrien board. Nutrien is the world’s largest provider of crop nutrients, inputs and services, playing a critical role in helping growers around the globe increase food production in a sustainable manner.
Ms. Madere is a former Executive Officer of Monsanto, a leading global provider of innovative, sustainable agricultural solutions. She has over 30 years of domestic and global experience, spanning manufacturing, strategy, technology, business development, profit & loss responsibility and general management. With Monsanto she served in a number of key leadership positions with significant P&L responsibility across Europe, Middle East and Africa as well as Asia and key markets within the US business. She retired from Monsanto Company as Vice President of the company’s Global Vegetables and Asia commercial businesses and was a member of the CEO’s executive leadership team. In addition, Consuelo serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council of the Louisiana State University Honors College. She is a member of the Latin Corporate Directors Association as well as the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility. Her professional degrees include an MBA from the University of Iowa and a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Louisiana State University. She is also certified by the National Association of Corporate Directors as a Governance Fellow.
Alexander C. Matina
Vice President, Investments at MFP Investors LLC
Mr. Matina was elected to the board in May 2015. Mr. Matina currently serves as Vice President, Investments at MFP Investors LLC, the family office of Michael F. Price, which focuses on long-term, value investment opportunities. Mr. Matina also serves as Chairman of the Board of Trinity Place Holdings, Inc., a public company consisting of the assets of the former Syms and Filene’s clothing stores. In addition, Mr. Matina has worked in various investment and financial analyst roles at Altus Capital Partners and Salomon Smith Barney, among others. Mr. Matina has a Bachelor of Science business degree from Fordham University, where he serves as an adjunct professor of Finance, and an MBA from the Columbia Business School.
Charles B. Seidler
Portfolio Manager, City Financial Hedge Fund Group
Commencing in October 2017, Mr. Seidler began serving as a portfolio manager of City Financial Hedge Fund Group in London, England. From June 2010 through August 2017, he served as an executive director and senior member of a proprietary trading group of Nomura Securities in New York, New York. From January 2007 through June 2010, Mr. Seidler held various senior positions at Deutsche Bank AG in Tokyo, Japan, including Head of JPY/UST International Sales (from March 2009 until his departure in June 2010), JPY Flow Trader (from September 2008 to March 2009) and Rates Proprietary Trader from January 2007 to September 2008. Between March 2003 and January 2007, Mr. Seidler was Co-Portfolio Manager of Caxton Associates, L.L.C., the macro hedge fund, New York, New York, where he focused on macro and relative value trading with a particular focus on the Japanese markets. He currently and during the last five years has served on numerous corporate boards of directors, however, none of them are companies with a class of equity securities registered under Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Mr. Seidler received a bachelor’s degree and a Masters of Arts from Colgate University.
Robert D. Straus
Portfolio Manager and Analyst, Wynnefield Capital Management LLC
Mr. Straus has served as Portfolio Manager and Analyst at Wynnefield Capital, Inc., an investment management firm, since April 2015. Wynnefield Capital Management manages two partnerships and Wynnefield Capital, Inc. manages one partnership, all three of which invest in small-cap value U.S. public equities and private companies. Prior to joining Wynnefield Capital, Inc., Mr. Straus served as a senior equity analyst of Gilford Securities, an investment banking firm, from February 2009 through March 2015. Mr. Straus served as Managing Director or Senior Analyst at several investment banks over nearly 20 years. Since June 2017, Mr. Straus has served on the Board of Directors for Nature’s Sunshine – a NASDAQ-listed nutritional and personal care products company, for which he also serves on the Audit committee and the Compliance Committee. Mr. Straus is also a member of the Board of Directors of two private companies: Since May 2017, Hollender Sustainable Brands LLC – a female sexual wellness consumer brand with its headquarters in Burlington, VT and an office in New York, NY; Since May 2015, MK Acquisition LLC – an authentic mountain lifestyle apparel brand founded in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Mr. Straus received a B.S.B.A. degree from the University of Hartford and a M.B.A. from Bentley University.