08-11-17 CSU’s Ag Innovation Summit 2.0 is coming to Ft Collins September 6-7 – REGISTER NOW!

CLICK HERE to view the program agenda and to get registered

September 6 – 7, 2017 @ Lory Student Center, Colorado State University
The summit will convene leaders from across the innovation community in Colorado and the Intermountain West to catalyze opportunities for advancing the regional and global agricultural economy.


All-inclusive registration is $150, with discounted rates for guests from CSU, government and nonprofit agencies.


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Please return to this page for program updates

7:30-8:00 a.m.

Continental Breakfast

8:00-8:30 a.m.


Ajay Menon, Dean, College of Agricultural Sciences, Colorado State University; Director, Colorado Agricultural Experiment Stations

8:30-10:00 a.m.

Keynote Address/Q&A: The Pillars of Food Policy

Tom Vilsack, CEO and President of the US Dairy Export Council, former Iowa Governor and US Secretary of Agriculture; Strategic Adviser of Food & Water Initiatives at the National Western Center and Global Chair for the International Board of Counselors on Food & Water Initiatives

10:00-10:30 a.m.


10:30-11:30 a.m.

Panel: What’s Next in the Agriculture Supply Chain

Diverse perspectives will weigh in on the trends and technologies on the frontier of agricultural innovation globally.  How will next-generation innovations in biotechnology and big data disrupt supply chain dynamics and enhance product quality? What will these developments mean for consumers? And where is Colorado prepared to lead?

  • Howard Yana-Shapiro, Chief Agricultural Officer, Mars Incorporated
  • Dana Johnson Downing, Director, Strategic Partnerships, TraceGains, Inc.
  • More panelists coming soon
  • Moderator – Alan Rudolph, Vice President for Research, Colorado State University

11:30-12:00 p.m.

Lunch Buffet and Networking

12:00-1:30 p.m.

Keynote Address/Q&A: Organizational Innovation – Connecting the Harvest to the Home

Juan Luciano, Chief Executive Officer, Archer-Daniels-Midland Company

1:30-2:30 p.m.

Panel: Human Capital and Innovation – Crossing the Generational Divide

Today’s multigenerational workforce presents unprecedented challenges and opportunities for employers.  How does this phenomenon present itself in agriculture and how can Colorado grow, attract and reward the talent who will drive the industry’s future? How can we harness diversity and inclusion to catalyze game-changing innovation?

  • Michael D’Ambrose, Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, Archer-Daniels-Midland Company
  • Mark Retzloff, Co-Founder of Horizon Organic Dairy, Aurora Organic Dairy, and Alfalfa’s Markets
  • More panelists coming soon

2:30-3:00 p.m.


3:00-4:00 p.m.

Keynote Address/Q&A: Innovation as a Catalyst for Statewide Prosperity

Tony Frank, Chancellor, Colorado State University System; President, Colorado State University

4:00-4:30 p.m.

Transition to Roundtable 2.0 Dinner at CSU On-Campus Stadium


4:30-5:00 p.m.

Spotlight: Innovation in the Value Chain – From Field to Foam 

Join us for a pint of Old Aggie Lager in celebration of the long and fruitful partnership between CSU and the flourishing craft brewing industry in Fort Collins, home to global brewing powerhouse and sustainability leader New Belgium Brewing.

  • Jeffrey Callaway, Associate Director, Fermentation Science and Technology, Colorado State University
  • More panelists coming soon

5:00-7:30 p.m.

Dinner: Roundtable 2.0 – Cultivating Colorado’s Ag Innovation Ecosystem for Global Leadership

Moderator: Kevin Ochsner, Agcellerate

This unique dinner event will feature a facilitated roundtable style-format, where attendees will engage with fellow guests and industry thought leaders in response to the challenge of making Colorado the preeminent leader in agricultural innovation.  Guests can expect provocative questions and are encouraged to embrace divergent perspectives as we aspire to advance local innovation for global impact.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Please return to this page for program updates

7:15-7:45 a.m.

Breakfast Buffet

7:45-8:15 a.m.

Opening Address

8:15-9:30 a.m.

Panel: Financing the Future of Ag Innovation in Colorado

Global agriculture presents unique challenges and diverse opportunities for the savvy investor.  We’ll take the pulse of the state’s investment climate and engage founders and funders alike to explore creative capital strategies for accelerating innovation and industry growth here at home.

  • Jason Suntych, Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer, Xiant Technologies
  • George Seward
  • Moderator – Jennifer Drake, Prototerra Advisors
  • More panelists coming soon

9:30-9:45 a.m.


9:45-11:00 a.m.

Keynote Address/Q&A: Leveraging Information for Consumer-Driven Innovation

Chris Hjelm, Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer; The Kroger Co.

11:00-11:15 a.m.

Spotlight: Student Hackathon

11:15-12:00 p.m.

Panel: Closing Debrief – Call to Action 

Panelists coming soon
Closing Remarks by Dean Ajay Menon

12:00-12:15 p.m.

Main Session Close/ Transit to Special Events

12:15-1:30 p.m.

Student/Industry Mixer 

2:00-4:00 p.m.

Public Session: Colorado Blueprint 2.0 (Summit registration not required)

  • Greg Graff, Associate Professor, Agricultural and Resource Economics, Colorado State University
  • Becca Jablonski, Assistant Professor, Agricultural and Resource Economics, Colorado State University
  • Dawn Thilmany, Professor and Extension Specialist – Agribusiness, Agricultural and Resource Economics, Colorado State University

For program questions, please contact Malia Michel at Malia.Michel@colostate.edu or 970-491-2088. And for registration questions, please contact CSU Conference & Event Services at 970-491-6222 or conferences@colostate.edu.