Ian Potter, PhD X
President and CEO
Ian Potter joined Vineland Research and Innovation Centre in 2019 as President and CEO. He is also President and CEO of Platform Genetics Inc., a spin-off company of Vineland.
Ian is an experienced executive who was recently Vice President, Engineering and Vice President, Business Management with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC). He was also Chief Operating Officer at Alberta Innovates – Technology Futures (AITF). Ian has a successful track record working with many business models for research funding and commercialization as well as a strong experience developing and collaborating with a broad network of stakeholders.
He holds a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Calgary (Canada).
Warren Jestin, PhD X
Warren Jestin retired in 2016 from Scotiabank after nearly three decades as Chief Economist. He also worked at the Bank of Canada and taught at a number of Canadian universities. Mr. Jestin is an advisor and public speaker on domestic and global economic issues and is on the Advisory Board of the University of Guelph’s College of Business & Economics.
Mr. Jestin has been a member of the C.D. Howe Institute’s Monetary Policy Council and became a Senior Fellow in 2015. He has been involved with policy committees of the Canadian and Ontario Chamber of Commerce and the Toronto Board of Trade.
Karen Belaire X
Board Vice Chair
Karen Belaire is President and Chief Executive Officer of Shared Services West and was previously Chief Operating Officer at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research.
Ms. Belaire has an extensive background in finance, information technology and human resources and holds CPA/CGA and Chartered Director designations and an MBA.
Ms. Belaire’s current board experience includes Trillium Gift of Life Network, St. Joseph’s Health System International Outreach Program and medical firms CimTec and CSii.
Greg Devries X
Greg Devries is President of Truly Green Farms and Cedarline Greenhouses. He is a third generation farmer whose grandfather settled in the Dresden, Ontario area from Holland over 60 years ago. Cedarline Greenhouses includes 16 acres dedicated to the production of peppers. The Truly Green Farms greenhouse is currently growing 22.5 acres of tomatoes with the intent of expanding to 90 acres of production. It will also be the first greenhouse in North America to utilize waste heat in production.
Mr. Devries worked for 10 years as a claims adjustor for AgriCorp in Kent, Lambton and Middlesex Counties. In 1997, he was elected to the board of the Ontario Soybean Growers. During the following 10 years, he served on all levels of the board including two years as Chair in 2005-2006. He has also served in various leadership positions on different farm organizations both provincially and federally.
Mr. Devries graduated from Ridgetown College in 1990 as a Livestock Major. In 1999, he participated in the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program (AALP).
Kristin Ego MacPhail X
Kristin Ego MacPhail owns family-run Ego’s Nurseries Ltd. located in Simcoe County, ON. The greenhouse operation cultivates a wide variety of fruit and vegetables sold to farmers’ markets, restaurants and retailers. The nursery also sells a selection of annuals, perennials, trees and shrubs to landscape and gardening operations.
Ms. Ego MacPhail holds a BSc in agriculture from the University of Guelph.
She is Director of the Ontario Farm Fresh Marketing Association and Past Chair of Agricultural Adaptation Council.
Carolyn Hurst X
Carolyn Hurst is the President of Westcott Vineyards in Jordan Station, ON. She was previously the President of Why Interactive Inc., ITC corp., and Effingham Technology Management Inc. and has 15 years of experience in executive positions in the information technology industry.
Earlier in her career, Ms. Hurst gained experience in the restaurant/hospitality industry.
She graduated from University of Western Ontario, served on the Brock Board of Trustees from 2012 to 2015 and is currently a member of the Board of Governors at Niagara College.
Fred Koornneef X
Fred Koornneef is the President of Koornneef Produce, a supplier of vegetables and tender fruits in Grimsby, ON for more than five decades.
In 2018, Koornneef Produce announced plans to build a 65,000-square-foot warehouse in the town of Lincoln, ON. The new facility will allow the company to pack more vegetables and Niagara fruit for local growers, in addition to sweet peppers, mini cucumbers and private-label grape tomatoes.
Shelley Martin X
Shelley Martin retired in 2018 from her role as President and CEO of Nestlé Canada Inc. She held this position for the final five years of her 28-year career at Nestlé, which also included leading numerous business units and functions. Ms. Martin has many board experiences across non-profit and industry organizations. She joined Vineland’s Board in 2017.
She holds a HBBA in marketing from Wilfrid Laurier University.
Ms. Martin has been named a Top 100 award winner for Canada’s Most Powerful Women by the Women’s Executive Network for a number of years.
Christy McMullen X
Christy McMullen joined Summerhill Market, a family-owned gourmet grocery store as Store Manager in 2003. She is the recipient of the 2015 Star Women in Grocery Award from Canadian Grocer Magazine. Ms. McMullen holds a CPA/CA designation and is a graduate of Wilfred Laurier University.
Ms. McMullen is a member of the Executive Board for the Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers and Program Advisory Committee of George Brown College.
Ray Price X
Ray Price is President of the Sunterra Group of Companies including Sunterra Meats, Sunterra Markets and Sunterra Farms based in Alberta and the Midwest U.S.
Mr. Price is Director of the Board for the Canadian Meat Council and has also served on the Board of the Government of Canada’s Council of Science and Technology Advisors.
Allan Visser X
Allan Visser is President of Visco Holdings Limited. Visco Holdings is active as a principal and project manager in the development and operation of residential and commercial real estate. The company has developed residential subdivisions and commercial buildings in the Niagara Region and Central Florida and manages several commercial and residential properties in Niagara.
Mr. Visser’s training as a chartered accountant and his experience as executive vice president of a multi-divisional real estate development and investment company has equipped him for his role as an entrepreneur.
Mr. Visser has served and led many not-for-profit and charitable boards and committees including the Niagara YMCA, Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce, the Chartered Accountants Association and the Port Dalhousie Business Association. He is currently Chair of Martindale Place, a not-for-profit senior’s housing development located in St. Catharines, Ontario.