Ian Potter, PhD X
President and CEO
Ian Potter is President & Chief Executive Officer of Vineland, as well as President and Chief Executive Officer of Platform Genetics, Inc.
Previous to Vineland, Ian served as Vice President, Engineering and Vice President, Business Management with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and previous to NRC as the Chief Operating Officer at Alberta Innovates – Technology Futures (AITF). During his 10 years at AITF and its predecessor, the Alberta Research Council (ARC), he held several leadership and management positions in energy, environment, greenhouse gas technology and human resources.
Dr. Potter has a successful track record in innovation and strong experience developing and collaborating with a broad network of stakeholders. He holds a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Calgary.
Karen Belaire X
Karen Belaire is currently the President and Chief Executive Officer of Shared Services West, a shared service organization specializing in supply chain optimization in the not-for-profit sector. Karen has held such roles as the Chief Operating Officer at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, Chief Operating Officer at the London Health Sciences Centre and at St. Joseph’s Health Care London, Vice President Administration for McMaster University and Vice President of Finance and Administration for St. Joseph’s Healthcare in Hamilton and for Credit Valley Hospital in Mississauga.
Karen holds a CPA/CGA designation and an MBA and she is a Chartered Director (C. Dir.). Her board experience includes current: Vineland Research and Innovation Centre, GS1 Canada, Csii, St. Joseph’s Health System (International Outreach Program), and past: Horizon Utilities, Theatre Aquarius, St. Peter’s Hospital, CIMTEC, Trillium Gift of Life Network, McMaster Innovation Park, Gore District Land Trust, McMaster Museum of Art, HSCN, Kids Health Links Foundation and CAA Southwestern Ontario.
Kristin Ego MacPhail X
Board Vice Chair
Kristin Ego MacPhail and her husband own Ego’s Nurseries Ltd. located in Simcoe County, Ontario. The greenhouse and nursery business cultivates a wide variety of annuals, perennials, trees and shrubs for their on-site retail garden centre and to supply the local landscape industry. Kristin and her family also operate a seasonal farm market for their field-grown strawberries, sweet corn, pumpkins and other farm fresh crops.
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.
May Chang X
May Chang is an executive who has spent 25 years in the healthcare sector in leadership roles at large community hospitals and major multi-site hospitals. She is currently the Principal of May Chang Consulting, offering executive leadership strategies.
Prior to starting her own consulting firm, May was the Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer at Markham Stouffville Hospital, where she strategically created and promoted the Office of Innovation, engaged partners for an Information Technology Hub and successfully mentored upcoming executives. May is sought after for her sound financial planning and fiscal expertise, as she is renowned for her ability to help organizations become financially successful.
Prior to joining Markham Stouffville, she served as Interim Chief Executive Officer at Shared Services West. May also held various senior executive portfolios at Trillium Health Partners and spent nine years in managerial positions in the private sector with Harry Rosen Inc.
She graduated with distinction from the University of Toronto and holds the prestigious Fellowship designations from both the CPA and CMA.
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).
John Groenewegen, PhD X
John operates JRG Consulting Group, a Guelph-based management consulting firm that has been in business for more than two decades. JRG Consulting Group focuses on the agriculture and food sector and provides consulting services in areas such as business strategy, sector competitiveness, economic assessments and policy. Dr. Groenewegen has conducted a number of projects in various segments of the horticulture sector.
Previously, John was a Partner in a major management consulting firm and was also employed by Agriculture Canada and worked at the U.S. Department of Agriculture in the early part of his professional career.
Mr. Groenewegen has a doctorate in agricultural and applied economics from the University of Minnesota, with his first two degrees from the University of Guelph. In addition to his professional focus, John is a farm owner in a share-cropping operation in southwestern Ontario.
Lori Hall X
Lori Hall is a partner at Gowling WLG, an international law firm with 18 offices across the globe.
Distinguished among the world’s top trademark professionals, Lori focuses her practice exclusively in the area of trademark prosecution. Over the course of her 14-year career, she has helped countless clients – from small startups to multi-billion dollar corporations – protect and maximize their brands at home and abroad.
A sought-after thought leader in her field, Lori is the author of the trademark prosecution section of LexisNexis Practice Advisor, one of Canada’s premier legal resources. Lori’s past board experience includes The Goodwill Amity Group (Hamilton and Halton) and The Innovation Factory at the McMaster Innovation Park.
Fred Koornneef X
Fred Koornneef is the President of Koornneef Produce, a supplier of superior vegetables and tender fruits. The company’s roots reach back more than five decades, when Fred’s father Arie Koornneef began selling choice tender fruit to customers out of a pick-up truck.
From those humble beginnings, Koornneef Produce Ltd. has grown to become one of southern Ontario’s premier suppliers of tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and tender fruit.
Fred Koornneef also sits on the Ontario Wholesale Produce Association (Toronto Wholesale Produce Association – TWPA) and is currently serving as President.
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. Christy holds a CPA/CA designation and is a graduate of Wilfrid Laurier University.
She is the Acting Chair of the Ontario Food Terminal Board and member of the Program Advisory Committee of George Brown College. Christy is also a Past Chair of the Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers.
Mark Picone X
An early career that began in the family’s food retail boutique, organically evolved to educator, chef and vineyard proprietor. Mark Picone currently teaches at the Canadian Food and Wine Institute at Niagara College, noting the engagement of students reinforces the role of mentorship.
While maintaining his creative eye and with a pulse of Niagara regional cuisine, the approach to sustainable farming led to his prized vineyard that is nestled in the Vinemount sub-appellation and parlays into his spirit of social gastronomy.
Mark is a graduate of the University of Guelph (B Comm) and Niagara University (MBA).
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.
Ray 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.
Allan’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.
He 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.