Robynne Anderson - President of Emerging Ag Inc.

Robynne Anderson is an international expert in agricultural and food policies. Her engagement reaches throughout the value chain providing support in issues management and strategic development to a broad range of clients ranging from farmers to food processors, scientists to governments.

Robynne represents accredited organizations at the United Nations, bringing the voice of agriculture in multi-governmental processes. She distinguished herself in establishing the first Private Sector Mechanism representing agribusinesses at the UN Committee on World Food Security. Her savviness at international diplomacy broke new grounds in bringing new issues to prominence in the international policy fora, such as the role of women in farming, the importance of post-harvest losses and food waste in food security. She led the two-year long negotiations for obtaining the declaration by the UN General Assembly of the International Year of Pulses and then co-ordinated the activities for the year on behalf of the Global Pulse Confederation reaching over 21 million people on social media. She also represented business in the negotiations that led to the Voluntary Guidelines on the Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests, as well as the Principles for Responsible Investment in Agriculture and Food Security.

In the context of her work on outreach to international organizations, Robynne also founded the Farming First coalition in 2007 and her company serves as the Secretariat of the International Agri-Food Network (IAFN).

Robynne is a spokesperson and public speaker on international agricultural, food and nutrition issues. She spoke at the UN General Assembly, Rio+20, the UN Committee on World Food Security, the UN negotiations on the Sustainable Development Goals.

Prior to founding Emerging ag, Robynne established Issues Ink, a Canadian-based publishing company specializing in magazines on Canadian and American agriculture. She managed the company for over seventeen years until selling in 2008. In that time, she founded Germination – Canada’s seed magazine, reconceived the Alberta seed guide, and purchased Seed World magazine and ran a total of 12 titles, plus several electronic newsletters.

Robynne is a graduate of Carleton University. She started her career in Canadian politics as legislative assistant to the then Deputy Prime Minister of Canada. In addition to her role at Emerging ag, Robynne is involved in the management of her family’s seed farm in Dugald, Manitoba, Canada. She is also the founder and current chairman of the Manyinga school project, a non-profit organization that supports orphans to learn agricultural skills through schools.

Follow Robynne on Twitter @Robynne_A

Paulette Bethel, PhD - Special Advisor-Multilateral Affairs

Paulette Bethel, a Bahamian national, is the Special Advisor-Multilateral Affairs on the Emerging Ag Team. She is a seasoned diplomat and manager with a wide range of national, regional and international experiences in areas related to sustainable development, among others.

Before joining Emerging Ag, Paulette served as Special Advisor-Coordination and Engagement in the Office of the President of the 70th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). Two years prior to that, she had served as Chef de Cabinet in the Office of the President of the 68th Session of the UNGA. Her career in the international arena began when she was employed by the United Nations in Vienna, Austria, after which she joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, where she served as a senior diplomat for a number of years.

Paulette's work in the international arena included the post of Director of the Department of Fellowships at the Organization of American States (OAS), becoming the first Bahamian national to hold a senior-level position in that Organization. She returned to The Bahamas for a period of time, during which she she was employed in the private sector in the area of international financial and corporate services, dealing with risk management and compliance matters.

In 2003, Paulette was appointed as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of The Bahamas to the United Nations, becoming her country’s first female Ambassador to the UN. She held that post for ten years up to March, 2013.

Paulette received her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and obtained her Master of Arts (MA) and Bachelor of Arts (BA) degrees from Howard University and the University of Toronto, respectively. She also holds a number of certificates, including one in Creative Processes Facilitation and one in International Negotiations.

Paulina Ceballos - Outreach Manager

Paulina helps Emerging with commercial market outreach, in particular with delegation coordination for trade missions. She is also our lead event planner, coordinating the planning and onsite logistics of all sizes of events around the world. Paulina is also very involved in Emerging’s online and offline communications, in particular content and community management, branding and marketing activities.

Prior to Emerging ag, Paulina started working as a radio broadcaster at the age of 16 and developed a following during the seven-year run of her feature show in her home country of Mexico. She has worked for many national and international media networks covering different events - not only in front of the microphone, but also as advertising sales consultant, media relations, marketing manager and host for official and public events. Her experience in Rome includes working in digital communications for the private sector and as press officer for the United Nations agency International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

Paulina is a Mexican national. She is fluent in Spanish, English, Italian and Portuguese. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from the Universidad Mexicana and a Laurea Magistrale in Journalism from the Università di Roma Tre. Paulina has been living in Europe for the past 8 years.

Isabelle Coche - Vice-President of Strategy

Isabelle is Emerging’s strategy visionary. She monitors global issues, and manages many crisis communications projects. She is our in-house expert on technology and innovation as well as climate change policy and negotiations.

Isabelle has significant experience in advocacy and communications at the international and regional levels, and a broad knowledge of development and agriculture issues acquired through previous work in international organizations, private sectors and NGOs. Prior to Emerging, Isabelle was also involved in the Farming First coalition. Leveraging the value of media and social media to complement outreach and advocacy into holistic strategies for public relations is at the core of Isabelle’s approach. She has also successfully led key public affairs projects in highly sensitive issues, such as agricultural biotechnology and intellectual property rights.

Isabelle is a French national and is fluent in both French and English. She holds a Master’s in Gender Studies from the London School of Economics and a BA Honours in Political Science and Economics from McGill University. Isabelle has lived in Africa and Asia, and does not currently have a home base as she is a citizen of the world.

Morgane Danielou - Vice-President Operations

Morgane oversees client project management at Emerging. She is particularly active in the Secretariat of the International Agri-Food Network (IAFN) by managing client interactions with the UN Rome-based agencies. Internally, she manages Emerging’s overall operations and is our in-house expert in fertilizers and the UN Committee on World Food Security.

Prior to joining Emerging ag, Morgane was Director of Communications and Public Affairs at the International Fertilizer Industry Association (IFA) where she co-chaired the Farming First coalition. She has also worked for the World Bank and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). Working for international organizations, NGOs, and the private sector, Morgane has been a spokesperson for specific industries as well as business groups in international policy processes and has conducted fieldwork in Latin America and Africa. For two years, Morgane represented the private sector at the UN Committee on World Food Security where she helped found the Private Sector Mechanism. Morgane was also vice-chair of the Food and Agriculture Committee of the Business and Industry Advisory Committee (BIAC) to the OECD. Having worked in international development and communications of the agri-food sector for the past 15 years, Morgane has a strong background in corporate and digital communications. She is passionate about building engagement with diverse stakeholders and representing civil society in United Nations processes and agencies.

A French national, Morgane is fluent in French, English, Portuguese and Spanish. She holds a Master’s of Science in Development Studies from the London School of Economics, an MBA from the Sorbonne Graduate Business School, a BA in History from the Sorbonne University and a BA in Chinese from the International Institute of Oriental Languages. Morgane has lived in Europe, Latin America and North America. She is currently based in Paris, France.

Hapsa Dia - Strategy Manager

At Emerging, Hapsa deals with strategy development and stakeholder engagement planning and tracking. She engages in training and capacity building efforts around crisis management and strategic communications for specific clients, and also supports the team with general communication and content development.

Hapsa began her professional career as a junior editor for an engineering company Suez Environment. She has experience with Weber Schandwick as a Digital Consultant, and was involved with an independent Mauritanian online media as an editor and radio broadcaster. Hapsa managed several projects from brand auditing to writing for a French parliament journal and also lobbying for media liberalization in Mauritania. With an interest to make a difference on key development issues, Hapsa created a development magazine with the support of UNDP and UNFPA. She then joined a publishing company where she coordinated the team for a national magazine and Financial Afrik, an international publication. Hapsa has worked as a consultant for a gold mining company in situations of crisis management and as an assistant to the Director of Strategy Sahel, a European Union program, on workshop, conferences and strategy building focusing on finding the right solutions to address the security issues in the Sahelo-Saharian region. Hapsa currently volunteers for “Santé sans frontières” a Mauritanian NGO aiming to raise awareness about key public health issues particularly on how to prevent Malaria and HIV in exposed populations.

Hapsa studied Materials Sciences and Applied Physics at the University of Orleans. As her interest in development grew, she went to Paris where she graduated with a Master degree in Public Affairs at Inseec Business School Paris and London College of Communication. Currently based in Nouakchott, Mauritania, Hapsa is fluent in French, English, Fulani and Wolof.

April Dodd – Regional Coordinator, Partnerships

April is a Mickey Leland International Hunger Fellow from the Congressional Hunger Center in the United States. The fellowship program trains emerging leaders in the fight to end hunger worldwide. It is a unique two-year program that combines field and policy work.

At Emerging and as part of her fellowship, April’s work focuses on increasing farmer and SME engagement within the Private Sector Mechanism (PSM) to the UN’s Committee on World Food Security (CFS). She identifies and meets with local and regional stakeholders with the goal of increasing their representation in global policy on food security, sustainable agriculture and nutrition.

Prior to joining Emerging, April spent two and a half years in Nairobi, Kenya, where she founded Open Table Cooking School, which teaches international culinary skills to Kenyan women to improve their hireability, job security, and earning power. Upon return to the United States, she spent a summer season at World Farmers, a non-profit farming and food business incubator that supports refugee and immigrant farmers in the Northeast region. She has also worked as a TESOL-certified English teacher in Ecuador, Guatemala, and France; a chef at a retirement community in Lexington, Kentucky; and a local food preservation manager in Vermont.

April is a United States national. She speaks English, Spanish, French, and Swahili. She holds a BA in Linguistics and French from Middlebury College in Vermont. She lives in Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Tracey Foster - Global Operations Manager

Tracey has joined the Emerging Ag and the Global Operations team in the capacity of Global Operations Manager.

Tracey brings with her many years of event planning and administrative experience. Over the past twenty years Tracey has been fortunate to have worked with a wide range of organizations from grass roots all the way up to large scale, most notably the famed Calgary Stampede.

Tracey has a great love of the outdoors, her passions also include travelling and all things equine related.

Tracey was born and raised in the majestic Canadian Rockies town of Banff, Alberta, had the opportunity to live abroad for three years and currently calls the small but progressive agriculture focused community of Olds, Alberta home.

Alice Giallombardo - Client Services Coordinator

At Emerging Ag, Alice works as Client Services Coordinator. This involves policy tracking and analysis, communication and outreach. She provides logistical and administrative support specifically related to UN Committee on World Security (CFS) and International Agri-Food Network (IAFN) events. This entails preparations for delegations of the Private Sector Mechanism, monitoring of UN activities relevant to the agri-food sector and assistance to PSM stakeholders’ interactions with the UN Rome-based agencies.

Prior to joining Emerging Ag, Alice has been dealing with the world of both the private sector and international organizations. Among other experiences, she has worked in the European Union Institutional and Regulatory Affairs office of Enel GreenPower, where she improved her knowledge about environmental and energy policies. She has also worked in the UN section of the Delegation of the European Union to the Holy See, to the Order of Malta and to the UN Agencies in Rome, where she acquired expertise in development and agri-food policies as well as in multilateral negotiations.

Alice is an Italian national and she is fluent in Italian, English and Spanish. She holds a Master’s degree in International Relations and Diplomatic Affairs from the University of Bologna and a Second-Level Master Degree in European Economic Governance from the LUISS University in Rome. Currently based in Rome, Alice has lived in Spain, California, Belgium and United Kingdom, both for academic and professional reasons.

Stefanie Hyde - Digital Media Strategist

With a passion for creativity, marketing and communications, Stefanie contributes to Emerging’s online communications and brand management, develops graphic visuals, and provides communications support to Emerging and its valued clients. Stefanie has grown up in a family with a long history in agriculture. Her family roots and exposure to farming and agri-business has nurtured a natural love for the industry and the wonderful people who work in it.

Prior to joining Emerging, she has gained career experience working with Parks Canada in a Promotions and New Media role and developed skills including videography, advertising, marketing, social media and graphic design.

Stefanie is a Canadian national and speaks both French and English. She graduated from Ryerson University in Toronto, Ontario, with a Bachelors Degree of Design. Stefanie was fortunate to spend a term of her degree program studying at the Copenhagen School of Design and Technology where she specialized in Sustainable Communications which included sustainable design, communications and marketing. Stefanie has lived in Denmark and is currently based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Tilly MacRae - Policy Co-ordinator

At Emerging, Tilly works in policy research and communications. She is involved in Emerging’s communications, secretariat functions, and the management of committees. She has always had a passion for sustainable business development, stakeholder engagement and international development.

Prior to joining Emerging, Tilly was completing her Masters of Science in Sustainable Energy Development. During her masters degree she was gaining work experience as the newsletter editor for the SEDV program. In addition, Tilly worked as an intern/writer for a local non-profit that aims to connect environmentally responsible businesses in Calgary.

Tilly is a Canadian national. She graduated from the University of Calgary with her Master of Science in Sustainable Energy Development. She holds a Bachelor of Science with an Honours Specialization in Animal Behaviour from the University of Western Ontario. Tilly has lived across Canada including Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario and New Brunswick. In addition, she spent a 10 month working holiday in New Zealand. Tilly is currently based in Calgary, Alberta.

Sid Mehta – Executive Vice President

Sid Mehta is joining the Emerging team in the capacity of Food Service & Retail leader. He brings with him vast experience in delivering strategies and tactical solutions on improving food security, reducing food loss & waste, and creating sustainable food systems.

Prior to joining Emerging, his work included developing, managing and executing strategies within hospitality and retail food service industry. He has successfully run multi-million-dollar food service operations in several sectors including energy resources, hospitals, schools and higher education, airports, and retail. In 2007, Sid joined Compass Group Canada, part of the largest global food services organization. His comprehensive experience earned Sid a reputation for enhancing consumer value propositions, engaging stakeholders in the strategic process, forging internal and external relationships, and establishing himself as a highly respected, award winning senior executive.

Sid’s passion and commitment to excellence began as a young entrepreneur in Nashik, India. There he conceptualized, implemented, and managed a unique restaurant named 12 to 12 which quickly become one of the top three restaurants in the city.

He has a Bachelor Degree in Electronics and Telecommunications, a Diploma in Industrial Electronics, and holds certifications in Six Sigma Green Belt, Culinary Skills, Financial Planning & Analysis and has completed the Queen’s University Executive Leadership program. Sid is proficient in four languages including English, Hindi, Marathi, and Gujarati.

Tanja Riedel - Global Operations Manager

Tanja keeps financial and organizational matters straight at Emerging ag. She works to maintain internal operational processes, HR procedures and assists with client and stakeholder contracts and proposals. She enjoys exploring the family ties to agriculture in her work life.

Joining from KPMG, Tanja has worked in various industries, including Banking, Recruitment and Energy. Tanja’s skills focus on finances, team management and human resources. Prior to Emerging ag, Tanja has gained experience as an Executive Assistant to VP's, CEO's and Management Boards, as well as an Administrative Assistant and Consultant.

Tanja is a German national and speaks both English and German fluently. She holds a BA in Economic Law obtained at the University of Applied sciences in Cologne, Germany. She has lived in Germany, the U.S.A and Canada. Tanja is currently based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Ben Robinson - Policy Coordinator

At Emerging, Ben works to facilitate private sector engagement with the UN by organizing private sector representation, monitoring UN activities relevant to agribusinesses, as well as performing stakeholder communications and outreach.

Ben has worked with the Office of Evaluation of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) and has contributed to the University of Toronto’s Journal of Middle East Studies. He has an abiding interest in international relations and development.

Ben is a Canadian national who is fluent in both French and English, and dabbles in a variety of other European tongues, both living and dead. He has studied European Politics and Human Geography at both the University of Toronto and the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris. Ben has lived in places as diverse as Brussels, New Delhi and Tehran. He is currently based in Rome, but soon relocating to London, UK.

Ashleigh Schoonderbeek - Client Services Co-ordinator

Ashleigh has joined the Emerging team as one of our client services co-ordinators. She brings with her experience in food services, the arts, media and development, and administration.

She is currently working on completing her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science degree at the University of Calgary and Athabasca University, this program combined her passion for writing, travelling and connecting with people, aspects she hopes to continue and develop moving forward. Ashleigh currently holds a number of teaching certificates in various aspects of dance.

Having previously worked for Central Alberta TV News Ashleigh possesses knowledge in writing news stories, numerous editing programs and interview skills. Other work experience includes teaching, choreographing, and adjudicating positions in dance academies and festivals across Alberta. She has also worked in the capacity of construction administration in the field of oil and gas. Her tasks here included the organization of multiple contractors, daily briefings and safety orientations.

Growing up in the small Alberta town of Olds, Ashleigh comes to the team with a basic agriculture knowledge which she hopes to continue to expand upon.

Anna Zailer - Global Operations Manager

Anna comes to Emerging with nearly two decades of experience in finance, HR, administration and management, as well as Financial Transactions and reporting analysis center of Canada (FINTRAC) administration.

She holds an advanced diploma in Business Administration - Accounting and is currently working towards obtaining her Bachelor of Applied Business Administration - Accounting.

Living in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Anna speaks fluent English and Russian and has worked in various industries, including real estate and accounting. She's looking forward to exploring the agriculture industry.