Lloyd Le Page, Founder & CEO
Mr. Le Page is the founder of Heartland Global Inc., a demonstration of his passion for new business and enterprise development through technology transfer, research and market innovation, stakeholder engagement, creative partnerships and mutually beneficial growth.
Mr. Le Page’s career includes 25 years management experience in farming, agribusiness, high value horticulture, and rural development in Africa, Asia and US. He has consulted for the World Bank, IFC, USAID, agri-business, trade associations and non-profits. Prior to starting the consulting practice Lloyd was CEO of the CGIAR Consortium, the world’s largest public agriculture and natural resources research institution, spanning 15 research centers globally, operating in over 200 locations, and supported by 64 national government and private foundation donors.
Mr. Le Page led DuPont-Pioneer’s Global Sustainable Agriculture and Development program. In this capacity he focused on creating innovative sustainable development partnerships which increased farmer productivity, and enhanced agricultural value chains while improving the business and technology acceptance environment. He led the strategy development and execution of Pioneer’s sustainable development activities. These included creation and leadership of strategic partnerships to develop trait and seed products, and innovative seed systems, including business partnerships and technology acceptance activities. Lloyd targeted and led development of business initiatives and value chain partnerships, in previously under-served markets. This increased farmer productivity and business value resulting in improved community economy. Working with international and local business teams, or where necessary independently, in new markets Lloyd was responsible for ensuring proposal preparation, implementation, evaluation, replication and scale-up. He developed and managed relationships with international and local partners including donors, foreign and US governments, non-profit organizations, research and academic institutions and other private sector businesses. He represented Pioneer and DuPont and advocated for positive agricultural development policies and resource commitments in individual meetings with senior government officials, in high level sustainable development and food security forums, and in working groups and steering committees such as the UN, USAID, FAO, and CGIAR. The role supported Pioneer’s citizenship and CSR initiatives, including education and capacity building and interacted at all levels with private, public, non-profit and academic sectors both in the US and in developing countries, especially Africa.
Prior to his move to the US, Lloyd worked for Pioneer as regional supply chain manager for Africa, and previously as production manager in South Africa and Zimbabwe. In these roles Lloyd managed large capital expansion projects as well as addressing supply chain and product deployment challenges of reaching small and large farmers in Africa. He was also involved with trade and regulatory issues of seed movement and was responsible for implementing quality management systems such as ISO9001:2000 in Zimbabwe, South Africa and Egypt. Lloyd participated in various committees of Africa-Bio, SANSOR and the Seed Trade.
Prior to Pioneer, Lloyd’s career involved farm and livestock management, horticulture, agro-processing, general management and finally sales agronomy in Zimbabwe.
Lloyd has served on many non-profit and advisory boards including the African Seed Trade Association (AFSTA), Empower Tanzania Inc, the Global Child Nutrition Foundation (GCNF), Iowa Council for International Understanding (ICIU), Association for International Agriculture and Rural Development (AIARD), Corporate Council on Africa (CCA), CropLife Africa, Partnership to Cut Hunger and Poverty in Africa (PCHPA), African Bio-fortified Sorghum (ABS) consortium, the West Africa Seed Alliance (WASA), the Alliance for Seed in East and Southern Africa (ASIESA) and the Wallace Chair for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University. Lloyd was among the founding participants of the Base of the Pyramid Protocol™ and has spoken at many global corporate citizenship events including at Wharton School of Business, Cornell, UNC, ISU and Drake. In 2006 Lloyd was awarded the AIARD Young Professional of the Year and was selected for Leadership Iowa 2009-2010
Although Lloyd is British, he spent his childhood in Zimbabwe, Malawi and Kenya. Lloyd moved to Iowa with his family in 2004 and lives in Des Moines.
Jim Zenner, Vice President & Senior Partner
Mr. James Zenner has 40 years of broad management experience including 11 years with DuPont Protein Technologies (The Solae Company) where he held increasingly accountable management positions including Area Managing Director for Asia Pacific, with responsibility for eight Asia Pacific business regions for the company’s Isolated Soy Protein (ISP) business, focusing on the health and nutrition market, processed food, beverage, meat, poultry and fish industries.
Prior to this, Jim was the Director of Global Industry Management at DuPont Protein Technologies with responsibilities for worldwide business development in the $230.0 million Isolated Soy Protein market.
Before joining DuPont Protein Technologies, Jim was Director of Store Brand Cereals, for The Ralston Purina Company (Nestle Purina / Ralcorp) and also held increasingly responsible management positions at the Warner-Jenkinson Company (Sensient Technologies Corporation) and Maritz Incorporated.
Jim is President of JPZ Consulting Group, a company he founded in 2001 that specializes in general management and nutritional science solutions for the companies in the international food and food ingredients marketplace and organizations within the global Non-Governmental Organization and Private Voluntary Organization food security supply chain. The group’s focus is on providing clients with management expertise and creative uses of new or existing food ingredients, commodities and micronutrients that are developed into great tasting, healthy and nutritious foods.
Jim holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Portland State University in Portland, Oregon.
Brian Foster, Senior Partner
Mr. Brian Foster has over 25 years experience in farming and international agribusiness, as well as donor contracting in Eastern Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia. Mr. Foster managed DuPont Pioneers seed businesses in Bulgaria and Ukraine, and now provides consulting services in agricultural production and farm management, marketing, business strategy and planning to clients around the world.
In the US, Mr. Foster provides business development and agricultural policy advice to clients in the livestock and meat industries. His clients include the two largest family-owned pork producers and business operations in the United States, Christensen Farms of Minnesota and The Maschhoffs of Illinois, as well as the country’s largest producer-owned pork processing company, Triumph Foods of St. Joseph, Missouri.
Mr. Foster is a farmer himself, managing the family’s farming operations in Iowa include crop production of corn, soybeans, pastures and alfalfa production, beef cattle feeding and the implementation of numerous soil and water conservation measures including no-till and strip-till. Brian grew up on a dairy farm in northeast Iowa.
His education includes a Master’s Degree in Agronomy from Iowa State University and an MBA from Purdue. Mr. Foster served as a U.S. Peace Corps volunteer in Costa Rica, providing technical assistance services to dairy farmers – he speaks fluent Spanish.
David Neuwirth, Partner
David Neuwirth is a proven, senior level executive with over 40 years demonstrated success in the consumer and business to business marketplaces.
Focusing primarily on the global and domestic food, agricultural, and nutrition industries, David Neuwirth’s specialty is strategic planning and positioning, strategic marketing, and product/market/business development.
In his numerous consulting positions, Mr. Neuwirth has successfully accomplished P&L growth for his clients in all aspects of their businesses including marketing, sales, product development/R&D, strategic positioning, acquisitions/mergers, operations, and human resources.
Mr. Neuwirth has also held senior management positions within the food/nutrition and service industries, including Executive Director of Novus Nutrition Brands LLC, where he initiated and grew three new global business units for Novus International. Neuwirth’s other senior positions have been with Procter & Gamble, Holiday Inns Inc., Ralston Purina, and Protein Technologies International. Within these companies, he led task forces to set corporate direction, led corporate growth efforts, accomplished divisional turnarounds, addressed business effectiveness, evaluated and initiated appropriate technologies, acquisitions and partnerships, and identified, developed, and launched new products, markets, and businesses worldwide.
Mr. Neuwirth holds an undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering and a graduate MBA degree in Marketing.
Ajay Sud, Partner
Mr. Sud has over 30 years of professional experience in providing client focused holistic solutions encompassing tax, legal and advisory services primarily focused on the social sector. He is qualified as both senior legal counsel, as well as a Chartered Accountant. Mr. Sud is founder and member of Governing Boards of International Development Enterprises India engaged in key interventions in promotion of livelihoods and income enhancements for small and marginal rural households; Access Development Services – a niche Technical Services Provider in the Microfinance and Livelihoods space; Center for International Development Services where he developed print and audio visual training tools for interventions in HIV/AIDS in relation to IndustrialLabour. At Pioneer Seeds (DuPont) he was the Founding Director for India and until 2008 was a member of the India Board. Managing tax and legal counsel for India; Foundation of MSME Clusters-Promoted by UNIDO and Government of India – member of the Governing Board; Sesame Street Workshop India Trust –member of the Governing Board, The Prince of Wales Bhoomi Vardaan Foundation – member of the Governing Board
Mr. Sud was also a member of the United Nations Resource Network for implementing Global Fund Grants for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
His legal experience has include global clients in both the following public and private sectors
- Save the Children
- American Cancer Society
- Prince of Wales BVF
- Red Cross
- Welthungerhilfe; Pioneer/DuPont; RLF
- Mercy Corps; GRI, DAAD, DFG, UoC
Andrew Ward, Partner
Andrew Ward has been managing agricultural research programs since 1999, initially with a focus on crop protection but recently with a focus on the whole innovation system required for research best practice focusing on bringing benefits to both farmers and the environment. A British citizen, he earned a PhD in Insect Pest Management/Insect Ecology on Cowpea (on farm research) in Nigeria from the University of East Anglia in collaboration with Rothamstead Research. In addition to the research he worked for an NGO which was an important outreach partner for the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) based in Ibadan, Nigeria. Dr. Ward had previously gained a Bachelor of Science in International Development from the University of East Anglia, a degree comprising biological and social science elements (plant biology, natural resource management, agricultural development, agricultural economics and sociology).
Dr. Ward started his career working for Natural Resources International, becoming deputy manager of the largest of DFID’s natural resources research programs, the Crop Protection Program. Acting as an interface between donors and researchers he managed projects addressing entomology, plant pathology, virology, nematology, weed science and migrant pests. These projects were mainly in Sub-Saharan Africa but also in South Asia and South America. In Africa Dr. Ward was a donor representative on the Pan-Africa Bean Research Alliance. He organized ongoing discussions with sister programs on livestock, forestry, plant science and post-harvest issues to address concerns together and identify opportunities for joint working. In addition he took additional studies on Gender and Agrarian Change, Project Management and Monitoring and Evaluation.
Charles Young, Partner
Mr. Young has over 30 years of experience in the seed industry in North America and internationally. His career spans hands-on agronomy and supply chains, through plant management and strategic business leadership. In the US he has managed operations in Iowa and Illinois where he managed seed production facilities and out-growers for Maize, Soy and other crops ensure production was reliable, and quality met customer demand. Facilities operation included drying, cold-storage, conditioning, grading, treatment, packaging and logistics.
Mr. Young was regional supply manager in the southern cone of Africa for DuPont Pioneer where he represented Pioneer’s supply management operations on the regional and country management teams along with research, marketing and finance resulting in a successful business models in South Africa, Zimbabwe and East Africa. He was responsible for plant and field operations for both commercial and foundation seed, and was heavily engaged in sales-demand planning with research, production and business teams, as well as the movement of seed. His seed management experience includes training teams in process management, SixSigma, LEAN, ISO and safety health and environment aspects. His role included working with African out-grower systems, seed dealers to resolve customer issues, working with phytosanitary and trade officials, evaluating inbred and variety trials and quality management and seed testing. Young was responsible for planning and negotiating capital expansion projects in Pioneer’s property for a facility expansion in South Africa. In 2012, Young co-led an independent assessment of the Tanzanian Seed Value Chain researching the seed market needs and identifiable gaps in the industry.
In his current role, Mr. Young leads the development and delivery the Biofuels curriculum at Carl Sandburg College in Illinois where he serves on the faculty as the Coordinator and Instructor. Young networks with commercial biofuels producers and farmers to share the benefits and motivating factors for their industry involvement in the curriculum and the collegiate vision for success. Mr. Young earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Agronomy at Iowa State University and continues to have family farm connections in Iowa. He is a trained ISO auditor, has been trained in LEAN, Six Sigma and DuPont’s world renowned SHE management systems.