Jorge Zamora

Jorge Zamora

Associate General Counsel, Costa Farms

Born and raised in Miami, Florida, Jorge Zamora has been part of the Costa Farms family since 2019, serving as the company’s Associate General Counsel.  Headquartered in south Florida, Costa Farms is one of the largest commercial growers in the U.S., employing approximately 5,000 professional growers and support staff and growing more than 1,500 varieties of houseplants, perennials, and specialty garden center items.

In his role, Zamora oversees and handles all matters for the organization involving labor and employee relations, immigration, workplace health and safety, litigation, and compliance.  Prior to joining Costa Farms, Zamora practiced labor and employment law, providing counsel and representing employers throughout the U.S.

Julie Hullett

Julie Hullett

Managing Editor, Greenhouse Grower

Julie Hullett is the Managing Editor of Greenhouse Grower. She is responsible for overseeing the print production process and generating content. Julie has been with Meister Media Worldwide since 2022. She has a journalism degree from John Carroll University.

Brian Sparks

Brian Sparks

Senior Editor, Greenhouse Grower

Brian Sparks is the Senior Editor of Greenhouse Grower and GreenhouseGrower.com. He is responsible for developing print and digital content and editorial planning, with a focus on greenhouse technology and production. Brian has been with Meister Media Worldwide since 2000 and was previously Managing Editor and Editor of American Fruit Grower, Senior Editor of Today’s Garden Center, and Senior Online Editor for GreenhouseGrower.com. Brian has a communications degree from John Carroll University.

Janeen Wright

Janeen Wright

Editor, Greenhouse Grower

Janeen Wright is Editor of Greenhouse Grower. She holds a degree in horticulture from Brigham Young University and was formerly the educator/horticulturist for The Herb Society of America.

Dave Malenfant

Dave Malenfant

CEO, MDM Consulting

Dave Malenfant has served as Director of Outreach and Partnerships and oversaw the Advisory Board for the Center for Supply Chain Innovation at Texas Christian University. Prior to this appointment, Dave served on the Advisory Board for the center from its inception in 2002. With a passion for talent development and career planning, Dave has helped develop the Executive Apprenticeship Program, judged the LINKS simulation game, and assisted students with internships and case competitions. Dave is also Executive Vice President of Industry Liaison and Talent Development for the BSMA (Biotech Supply Management Alliance) responsible for bringing best practices across the Biotech Industry.

Prior to joining TCU, Dave spent over 35 years in a variety of industry roles. As an entrepreneur, Dave was Co-founder and President of Signature Consultants, Inc., (1973) a business, finance, and economic consulting firm that he ultimately sold in 1993. He created and operated a variety of other businesses that are still profitable in Canada today.

In 1993, Dave joined Alcon Laboratories where he steadily advanced through leadership roles such as Purchasing Manager, Materials Operation Manager, and Global Supply Chain Director before becoming the Vice President of Global Supply Chain in 2005. In this role, Dave provided strategic direction for the company’s Global Supply Chain initiatives and created global centers of excellence for Purchasing, Distribution, Transportation, Customer Service, Sales and Operations Management, Data Management, Graphic Design and Artwork Development, and Product Launches. Dave retired from Alcon in 2014.

Dave is recognized for the creative development of standardized systems and business processes, and for developing enabling technology throughout the entire supply chain. During his career, Dave has implemented over 30 different computer systems – WMS, ERP, Finite Scheduling, Product Launch, and Order Entry, among others. Dave serves on the Executive of the DFW CSCMP Roundtable and ISM-Fort Worth. He is past Chairman of the Supply Chain Council and past member of the Executive Committee of NASSTRAC.

Given his vast knowledge of the end-to-end, integrated supply chain, Dave is a frequent speaker on Global Supply Chain Trends and Digitalization. He has consistently demonstrated his passion for Supply Chain management, developing talent, and the need to advance Supply Chain theory and innovation throughout a variety of industries.

Dave is currently CEO of MDM Consulting, A supply chain and operations consulting company.

Robert Erwin

Robert Erwin

Director of Cultivation, Copperstate Farms

Robert Erwin is the Director of Cultivation at Copperstate Farms, one of the largest greenhouse cannabis producers in the U.S., with over 40 acres under glass. Erwin has an extensive background in commercial agriculture on both an academic and professional level, with more than thirty years of experience at large-scale cultivation operations throughout North America. Erwin began his career as Head of Department at Greenmount College of Agriculture and Horticulture in Northern Ireland. He then led production and quality control at some of the top global tomato producers, including Gipaanda Greenhouses, Windset Farms, and Canagro Produce, in British Columbia, and Eurofresh Farms in Arizona. With a focus on business development, Erwin helped double and even triple production capacity at these operations and was also heavily involved with the BC Greenhouses Growers Cooperative. Erwin holds a degree in Horticulture Science from Reading University in England where he graduated with Honors.

Larry Turow

Larry Turow

Managing Director, PivotPoint Business Solutions

Larry has an extensive background in corporation finance, small business financial planning, and private business investment. He believes successful relationships are built on trust and collaboration which leads to creative solutions that meet clients’ needs. Larry is active in local community organizations where he holds executive leadership positions to guide strategy. He has expertise working with small businesses and professional practices on guiding succession and exit planning, structuring executive compensation, constructing business continuity arrangements, as well as developing retirement plans to fit owners’ after-tax strategies. Larry holds a BA in Political Science from the University of Michigan and an MBA in Finance and Accounting from the Booth School at the University of Chicago.

Michelle Klieger

Michelle Klieger

Founder, Stratagerm Consulting

Michelle Klieger is an agricultural economist and the founder of Stratagerm Consulting, an agricultural and business consulting firm. She works across agriculture and throughout the supply chain. Her work has taken her around the world, helping industry leaders manage and grow their global businesses. Michelle is a professional speaker, the author of The Demise of Free Trade, a podcast host, and a professor of economics at Bentley University. She holds a Masters in Agriculture Economics from Purdue University and an MBA from Indiana University Kelley School of Business.

Geneiva McNeale

Geneiva McNeale

Training and Development Manager, Metrolina Greenhouses

Geneiva McNeale is in her second year at Metrolina Greenhouses as Training and Development Manager. She has over 20 years’ experience as a Senior Learning and Development Consultant and Coach, with a focus on leadership and communication skills. At Metrolina, she has been working with leaders across the organization to advance the company’s vision of creating a world-class employee experience and promoting a culture of constant learning and open communication. Her passion is developing talent and building the bench strength for leaders to be ready for the next level up. Her expertise includes instructional design and facilitation, team building and mediation, and individual coaching and feedback for development.

Melinda Knuth

Melinda Knuth

Assistant Professor, North Carolina University; Dept. of Horticultural Sciences

Dr. Knuth’s research area focuses on consumer and market research experience by focusing on the interface between people and plants, helping the horticulture industry understand consumer preferences, perceptions, and motivations. Historically, Dr. Knuth has evaluated trade flows of horticulture products in the United States, assessed the supply chain in the cut flower industry, investigated profit margins in substituting species in floral arrangements, and estimated consumer acceptance of retail messaging.

She currently is an Assistant Professor in Horticultural Science at North Carolina State University. Dr. Knuth teaches Greenhouse Management, Floriculture Production, Floral Design, and Horticulture Marketing. Dr. Knuth received her PhD from Texas A&M University in Horticultural Science with a certificate in Applied Statistics. From there, she was a postdoctoral research associate at University of Florida in the Food & Resource Economics Department. Dr. Knuth received GPN Magazine’s 40 under 40 award in 2021, is a member of AFE’s Young Professionals Council, and a 2017 AmericanHort Scholar.

Todd Downing

Todd Downing

Managing Partner & Co-Founder, Best Human Capital Advisory Group

Todd brings 30+ years of horticultural, consumer products, and multi-industry business experience, including over 18 years of working as an Executive Search and Human Resource Advisor. Todd provides client companies with a consultative partner who proactively aligns hiring strategies and human resource initiatives that impact the completion of strategic goals with a positive ROI.

Peter Konjoian

Peter Konjoian

President, Konjoian’s Horticulture Education Services

Peter grew up on a family farm and retail greenhouse operation in Andover, Massachusetts and earned his B.S. at the University of New Hampshire. Both his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees were earned at Ohio State University, graduating in 1982. He began his career as a faculty member at the University of Maryland before returning to Massachusetts to run his parents’ greenhouse operation.

He formed Konjoian’s Horticulture Education Services, Inc. in 1992 and has been immersed in both the commercial and research arenas of the U.S. greenhouse industry for over four decades. Peter has presented over 630 professional seminars throughout the U.S. and Canada. He has held adjunct university appointments at Ohio State, UMass, and the University of New Hampshire which have allowed him to guest lecture, serve on graduate advisory committees, and interact with the academic community.