Grow, protect, and enhance supplies of quality coffee while improving the livelihoods of the families who produce it.
All of our projects are designed to enhance the livelihoods of the producers who are the stewards of both quality and productivity. If we lose them, we lose the game and future of the industry.
To create a toolbox of coffee varieties, genetic resources and accompanying technologies and to disseminate them strategically and collaboratively in producing countries to alleviate constraints to the supply chain of high quality coffee.
Our globe-spanning trials and projects in 21 countries are all designed to deliver:
We don't do this work alone. We collaborate with the best minds in coffee science, wherever they are. We have partnered with researchers from the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), one of world-leading food security research organizations; CIRAD, a French academic institute that has made critical contributions to coffee research; and Kew Gardens, one of the world's premier botanical research centers, among many others.
Most of our research is done in the places where coffee is grown. We partner with local research institutions, coffee organizations, governments, and NGOs who can ensure maximum impact. We believe its essential to build the human and institutional capacity in these countries, and are working to foster the next generation of coffee scientists and expand the network of coffee research institutions in producing countries through collaborative research and training.
Our research is “precompetitive” and for the benefit of the entire coffee industry. As often as possible, scholarly works resulting from our research are published in open-access journals.
Long is the Chief Executive Officer of World Coffee Research, the world’s first
global, collaborative agricultural R&D organization for coffee. A plant breeder by training, Long brings 25 years of experience in
international agricultural research with a focus on smallholders, and deep
expertise on genetic resources policy. Prior to joining WCR, Long served as the
director of the Office of Agricultural Research and Policy at the U.S. Agency
for International Development (USAID), where she managed a global program
portfolio of >$140 million per year. Long has substantial experience convening diverse stakeholders —
from industry, national governments, CGIAR international agricultural
research centers, university scientists, and farmers—to formulate a shared crop research agenda to improve productivity among smallholder farmers. Her work has spanned
low- and middle-income countries in diverse geographies including Central
America, West Africa, East and Southern Africa, and South Asia. She has served on various multi-donor working
groups, including as Chair of the Agricultural Research Working Group of the
Global Donor Platform on Rural Development based in Bonn, Germany. She received her PhD in plant genetics from
Founder, President of WCR Europe
Timothy Schilling is the founder of World Coffee Research, the world’s first global, collaborative agricultural R&D organization for coffee. A scientist and development expert, Dr. Schilling was the first to bring widespread attention in the coffee industry to the fact that coffee is an orphan crop: grown in poor countries, consumed in rich countries, and researched in neither.
Dr. Schilling galvanized the world coffee industry, worth $174 billion dollars per year, to recognize the potentially disastrous vulnerabilities it faced due to the lack of functional, global, open-source research and development programs that create new knowledge and technologies for the benefit of farmers.
World Coffee Research was thus born in 2012. The same year, when the first reports of a massive epidemic of a fungal disease called coffee leaf rust were circulating in Central America, Dr. Schilling sounded alarms and organized the first Coffee Leaf Rust Summit in Guatemala. That summit resulted in concrete actions including development bank support loans to national governments for fungicides and access to credit for farmers through guarantees from USAID. The most sustainable result, however, was the launch of World Coffee Research’s global coffee breeding program for rust resistance and climate resilience, and the establishment of a global network of trial sites to advance knowledge on coffee variety performance.
In the few short years since World Coffee Research was founded, Dr. Schilling has delivered tangible, pragmatic results to shore up the coffee industry’s goal to secure long-term sustainable supplies of high quality coffee. He has grown the nonprofit organization to encompass offices in France, the United States, and El Salvador, where WCR has also established a research farm. The organization has formed dozens of collaborative partnerships with coffee organizations, NGOs, and governments to execute applied R&D for genetic improvement and agronomic advancements for coffee.
Prior to founding World Coffee Research, Dr. Schilling led two programs to rebuild the Rwandan coffee sector after the country’s genocide. The USAID PEARL and SPREAD projects were crucial to the successful entry of Rwanda into the American and European Specialty Coffee markets. PEARL and SPREAD doubled incomes for over 100,000 small coffee producers in Rwanda and fundamentally changed the image of Rwanda in the international press. Prior to his work in coffee, Dr. Schilling led several other major international initiatives, working with universities, the U.S. Congress, USAID, and national agricultural institutes across Africa and Latin America to establish research programs to increase sorghum and millet food supplies. He holds a Ph.D. in plant breeding and genetics in from North Carolina State University.
Salvador Urrutia Loucel
Latin America Director
Salvador Urrutia Loucel is the Central America Representative of World Coffee Research, providing coordination and oversight of all activities in the region. Salvador earned his degree in Agricultural Engineering with a specialization in economics at the University Centroamericana José Simeón Cañas. In his 34 years of professional work, nearly 20 years have been in the cultivation of coffee. He has worked as a technician, as general manager in a local coffee company, and at the research institution PROCAFE. From 1999 to 2004, he was the Minister of Agriculture and Livestock of El Salvador, where he supported the coffee sector with economic and production-focused programs and provided support to coffee institutions in El Salvador and across Central America. He lives in Santa Ana, El Salvador. Email: email@example.com
Hanna is among the world’s foremost “explainers”
of coffee and coffee science. Whether she’s explaining the impact of climate
change to a room full of coffee roasters, or coffee genetics to a hedge fund
trader, or coffee brewing to her mom, the intersection of coffee and science is
her passion. She writes regularly and speaks globally about the future of
coffee and coffee agriculture. (See talks here and here and here). She is
the author of over 50 magazine articles on coffee, and of the book Left Coast Roast. She has a degree from McGill University. She is based in Portland, Oregon. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Greg leads WCR fundraising and engagement across multiple segments and geographies of the global coffee industry. Greg has over 25 years of nonprofit experience in fundraising and partnership development, and has served as the Director of Development and Communications for social service, education, and literacy development organizations in the U.S. and abroad. He is based in Portland, Oregon. Email: email@example.com
Administration and Finance Director
Siaska provides overall administrative and financial coordination for the World Coffee Research Program as well as financial planning, coordination and reporting, fund raising accountability and management, and international research contract and grant management. She works with the Board of Directors and is their liaison for financial and administrative work. She grew up in The Netherlands and is fluent in English, Dutch, Portuguese and French. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Global Coffee Monitoring Program Director
As the Global Coffee Monitoring Program Director, Danielle Knueppel oversees a network of hundreds of on-farm trials in over a dozen countries. Danielle has over a decade of experience managing and evaluating programs to assist global farmers to access markets and sustainably increase their agricultural productivity and farm profitability. Previously, she worked with non-profit and research organizations in Ethiopia and Tanzania and with USAID in Nepal and Ghana, managing large, multidisciplinary projects and fostering collaborative relationships with partners in agribusiness, academia, government and non-profits, as well as with farmer producers, to align interests along supply chains. Danielle has a bachelor’s degree in horticulture and a master’s degree in International Agricultural Development.
Global Programs Director
Kraig H. Kraft is an agroecologist who has worked on rural development issues in Latin America for over 15 years. Prior to joining WCR, Kraig worked with Catholic Relief Services as their Regional Technical advisor for coffee and cacao in Latin America. Previously, Kraig worked with COSA – the Committee on Sustainability Assessment - where he led impact assessments of sustainability projects in coffee and cacao. He has served as a consultant on monitoring and evaluation in coffee and cacao projects for the International Finance Corporation (of the World Bank) and to Lutheran World Relief. Kraig is the co-author of a book on climate change and food traditions, Chasing Chiles: Hot Spots Along the Pepper Trail. Kraig is fluent in Spanish and has a M.S. in International Agricultural Development and a Ph.D. in Agricultural Ecology from the University of California, Davis. Kraig was always a fanatic coffee drinker but was really turned on to the variety and diversity of coffee when he started home roasting when in graduate school, purchasing green coffee from Sweet Marias. He still aspires to roast coffee someday.
Jean Paul Rugwiro
Rwanda Country Agronomist
Jean Paul has a bachelor’s degree in Agriculture Science and an advanced diploma in Crop Production from the University of Rwanda, College of Agriculture, Animal Sciences and Veterinary Medicine (CAVM). He has several years of very relevant experience in field data collection and in managing projects in coffee agronomy and processing with farmers and cooperatives.
Finance and Post-Award Coordinator
Jarrod has a degree in Finance from Texas A&M University and 15 years of finance and accounting experience, primarily with non-profit organizations. He is based in Texas and is very enthusiastic about helping farmers and their communities.
Julio is a research technician in charge of the supervision and control of activities at Flor Amarailla, the WCR Research Farm located in Santa Ana, El Salvador. Julio is Salvadorian and since childhood has lived in an agricultural environment. He has a bachelor degree in Food Science at Pan-American Agricultural School, Zamorano, and has a Master’s degree on Coffee Science and Economics at University of Udine, Trieste and Fondazione Ernesto Illy
Kenya Country Agronomist
Partnership Development Associate
Alexa joins World Coffee Research with fifteen years of combined experience in nonprofit fundraising and corporate investor relations. She is passionate about social justice issues and excited to engage more partners in WCR's work, which will benefit millions of small farmers in developing countries. Having lived and worked in Germany for five years, Alexa is particularly interested in developing global partner relationships. Contact: email@example.com
Peter Cecil Sinnott
Data Systems Manager
Peter provides database management, oversight, and strategy to World Coffee Research. He graduated from McGill University with a focus in Remote Sensing, a field in which he invented and patented a method of agriculture monitoring. Peter previously supported the Coffee Board of India on several projects assessing specialty coffee certification for tribal farm communities. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Uganda Country Agronomist
Maureen Namugalu holds a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Land Use and Management from Makerere University. Maureen is the lead country agronomist for the WCR Global Coffee Monitoring Program in Uganda. She is an agronomist and soil scientist by profession, with strong agricultural production background. Maureen has worked with Café Africa Uganda in collaboration with UCDA and NaCORI for the last three years focusing on coffee agronomy, coffee extension services, and the assessment of coffee seedling survival rate of Arabica and Robusta coffee in Uganda. She established experimental research trials at the National Crop Resource Research Institute in collaboration with the University of Bonn. Maureen has also carried out independent research on soil conservation practices of coffee farming systems along a slope.
Hector Andres Santos Rojas
Honduras Country Agronomist
Hector Santos has worked in the coffee industry for over 10 years, as both a producer and technician. He is an agronomist and has a masters degree in project management from the Technological University of Honduras. He has worked with The World Food Program as a field technician, organizing basic grain producers in the region. He also lead and trained groups of coffee producers in the department of El Paraíso.
Most recently, he worked for the Hans R. Neumann Foundation as a technician of the Coffee & Climate initiative in the El Paraiso region, implementing demonstration and research plots with adaptation measures to climate change, working in close relationship with IHCAFE.
Guatemala and Mexico Country Agronomist
Jose Paiz has an engineering degree in forestry engineering and a specialization degree in agricultural production under controlled conditions. He comes to WCR with ten years of experience in agricultural and forestry farm management, especially in the cultivation of coffee, the use of forest plantations, and nurseries.
Molly comes to WCR with over 10 years of experience in the banking industry and a background in biology. Combining these skills, she administers the WCR Checkoff Program, assisting current and prospective participants with inquiries, enrollment, and best practices for implementation. Molly works in coordination with the Partnership Director, Financial and Administrative Director, and Business Manager. She is based out of Portland, OR. Contact: email@example.com
Europe Business Manager
Maud Nicolas joined WCR in late 2018. She provides overall administrative and financial coordination for the World Coffee Research in Europe and also assists the CEO. As WCR Europe’s Business Manager, she works closely with the Administration and Finance Director and accountant. She’s proud to join WCR and to contribute to the organization's development. She is based in Marseille, France. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nicaragua Country Agronomist
Elly Castro is the Country Agronomist for Nicaragua and coordinates WCR's activities in Nicaragua. Elly earned an agricultural engineering degree in agricultural education from EARTH University in Costa Rica and a master's degree in hydrology and water resources management from Acala de Henares University in Madrid, Spain. He has experience in coffee agronomy, nursery production, natural resources management and field data collection and analysis.
Emilia Umaña Acosta
Nursery Development Specialist
Emilia is responsible for all field activities related to the coffee seed and nursery sectors under the WCR Nursery Development Program. Emilia has an agricultural engineering degree in agronomy from EARTH University in Costa Rica, and a degree as a project manager specialist from the Instituto Tecnológico de Costa Rica. She has a depth of experience and understanding of renovation programs and the coffee nursery and seed sector from her work in nurseries.
Project Agronomist in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Sylvain Roulain is WCR’s project agronomist in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He earned his degree as Agronomist from ISTOM in Cergy-Pontoise, France in 2016, and his coursework focused predominantly on international development and agronomic research through experimentation. Before starting with WCR, he worked with FREDON Martinique to study Mammea Apple.
Contracts & Grants Manager
Nicole Freeman joined the World Coffee Research in 2018. Nicole has over fifteen years of progressive work experience in public institutions and non-profit advancement, with more than ten years of international experience in the business administration of international development programs and humanitarian assistance. Nicole has over ten years of experience in finance, grants, and contracts management of diverse portfolios. Ms. Freeman holds a Master’s level degree under the Public Health program from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and a Bachelor of Science from Colorado State University. She is an EMBA candidate at the IMD business school.
Dr. Lucile Toniutti is World Coffee Research's molecular breeder. She is an agronomist specialized in plant breeding holding a Ph.D from Montpellier SupAgro. Her work sits at the crossroads of plant disease, genetics, and agronomy. During her Ph.D. studies she researched the effect of plant health on reducing coffee leaf rust incidence on Arabica coffee trees. Email: email@example.com
Puerto Rico Coordinator
Viviana Medina is a plant physiologist who has worked extensively on drought tolerance of numerous tropical crops. Prior to joining WCR she worked with Bioversity International where she played a key role in the development, coordination and implementation of a strategy to evaluate the current state of cacao drought and heat tolerance research. Her doctoral thesis at the University of California Davis was centered on understanding physiological and genetic variations of tolerance traits that underpin/contribute to drought tolerance within the Phaseolus genus. Viviana is dedicated to helping rebuild Puerto Rico’s agriculture, recently co-fundeding Seeding Relief-Puerto Rico, a non-profit organization created in response to the Irma and María hurricanes to help in the reestablishment of agricultural production. Her work with WCR will continue to support this mission by helping restore the destroyed coffee farms in Puerto Rico.
Josue Omar Callejas
El Salvador Country Agronomist
Callejas is the research technician in charge of managing
Flor Amarilla, WCR's experimental farm at the Central America regional office in Santa
Ana, El Salvasdor. In 2016, he earned his bachelor's degree in Food Science and Technology at Zamorano
Agricultural Panamerican School in Honduras. He completed internship at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where he
was a research assistant in a microbiology laboratory, a graduation research project developed with Archer Daniel's Midland Company.
Project Leader of the International Multilocation Variety Trial & DNA Fingerprinting
Solene oversees the network of the International Multilocation Variety Trial. She also coordinates the DNA Fingerprinting analysis. She obtained a master's degree in agronomy in France and has been working on seed production and breeding. Solene believes that understanding farmers constraints is a key driver for research activities and context adapted innovations. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Koleen has 30+ years of experience in nonprofit management and enjoys working as part of a team to keep no-profit organizations running smoothly. As WCR's Business Manager, she works closely with the Administration and Finance Director and Accountant to handle billing and payment, contracts, and human resources. She is based in Portland, OR. Contact: email@example.com
Elisabeth Fillmore holds a bachelors degree from McGill University in
English Literature and Arabic. She comes to WCR with several years of marketing, advertisement, and sales experience. As WCR's communications assistant she
combines her love of writing, science, and coffee.
Jean Baptiste Kayigamba
Breeding and IMLVT Assistant
Jean Baptiste Kayigamba spent the last three years as a field facilitators for the Rwanda Agriculture Board’s coffee program, where he prepared and set up varietal trials, collected data, and managed the nursery. He holds a BA in Agronomy from University of Rwanda College of Agriculture, Animal Sciences and Veterinary Medicine.
Simon Martin Mvuyekure
Coffee Breeding Hub Ambassador
Dr. Simon Martin Mvuyekure is WCR's Regional Coffee Breeding hub Coordinator for Africa. He holds a Msc. in crop protection from “Université Catholique de Louvain (Belgium) and a Ph.D in plant breeding, from the University of KwaZulu Natal (South Africa). For the last 13 years, he worked for Rwanda Agriculture Board (RAB). His research focused on varietal development, coffee pests and disease management as well as coffee system agronomy. He contributed to the conception and management of outstanding coffee research projects aiming the sustainability of the coffee sector in Rwanda.
Since their establishment back in 2016, he is leading IMLVTs and the African Regional Breeding Hub hosted by Rwanda.
Francisco (Paco) Anzueto
Scientific Coordinator, Central America
Francisco Anzueto is WCR's Regional Scientific Coordinator for Central America. He holds a doctorate in coffee breeding, and diplomas in biology and agronomy. For 39 years, he worked for Guatemala’s National Coffee Association (Anacafé), and was their director of research from 1986 to 2014. His research has focused on topics including plant breeding, nematology (the study of nematodes), quality and food safety, as well as different coffee environments and production systems, with experience in providing technical advice to farmers. He is the author and co-author of numerous scientific papers.
Pascal Gakwaya Kalisa
On-Farm Technology Trial Regional Coordinator, East Africa
Pascal was born into a coffee farming family. His career in coffee began more than 15 years ago, when he worked as an
agronomist and coffee washing station manager with Rwanda's first specialty
coffee washing station, MARABA. He has since worked
as a sustainability and farmer relationship manager at KZNOIR Limited,
where he supported 10,000 coffee farmers by managing certification
and creating projects that impacting community. Pascal was involved in the SPREAD
and PEARL projects with Dr. Tim Schilling in the mid-2000s as coffee quality
manager. He has training in coffee cupping, export processes , and
coffee marketing. He recently initiated biochar production in Tanzania (biochar is a 2,000
year-old practice that converts agricultural waste into a soil enhancer that
can hold carbon, boost food security, and increase soil biodiversity,
and discourage deforestation). Pascal has a
bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of
Rwanda. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Global Coffee Monitoring Program Regional Coordinator, Central America
Sara Bogantes has worked in coffee for five years. Previously, she worked at the Doka Estate and La Hilda coffee plantations in Costa Rica. She has developed and implemented agricultural best practices, as well as designed and created a germplasm bank to assist in the improvement of coffee plants on the farm. The latter project included evaluating different varieties, their performance in the cup, pest and disease resistance, and yield per plant. She was responsible for the entire seed exportation process that included managing a staff to collect and execute seed selection for export, quality control, and necessary documentation.
WCR Agronomist Peru
Jimmy More is the Country Agronomist for Peru. He holds a bachelor’s degree in agronomy from Universidad Nacional Agraria de la Selva and a master’s degree in environmental management and sustainable development from the “Universidad Nacional Jorge Basadre Grohmann”, both in Perú. His research was focused on soil area and plant growth. He has worked in coffee projects and has experience training producers in coffee agronomy and nursery production.
Nicaise Sheila Sagbo
Nicaise Sheila Sagbo is in charge of the economic analysis of the Global Coffee Monitoring Program. She also helps manage the WCR database for the program. She is based at the Texas A&M University where she holds a position of Associate Research Scientist. Sheila has worked on behalf of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to assess the impact of agricultural policies in Haiti. She has more than ten years of experience in research design, data collection, data management, and econometric analysis. Sheila holds a Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics and degrees in Agronomy and Agricultural Development.
French National Agronomic Research Institute (INRA)
Dr. Guichard is a high-level food scientist specializing in flavor release and physico-chemistry. She is the research director at INRA (National Agronomic Research Institute) and co-leader of the research group on molecular interactions, in-mouth mechanisms and flavour perception at CSGA (Centre des Sciences du Gout et de l’Alimentation) in Dijon, France. She is one of the leading researchers of wine flavor/aroma in France. She has authored more than 150 peer-reviewed publications in international journals and 42 book chapters, and has presented 114 oral communications and 120 posters in international congresses in the field of food science.
M. Catherine Aime
Fungal Pathology Expert
M. Catherine Aime is one of the world's foremost experts on rust fungi. Her research lab at Purdue University studies aspects of mycology ranging from genomics
to pathology, with a special focus on the systematics, biology,
and evolution of rust fungi in tropical ecosystems. (Rust fungi represent the single largest
group of plant pathogens in the world—it is conservatively
estimated that more than 1 million fungal species have yet to be
discovered and described by science—with incredibly complex life cycles.) Dr. Aime's lab uses phylogenetics and genomics to understand how
these fungi became so successful and to provide tools for their
Aime has spent 15 years documenting and describing new species and
genera from a very remote region in Guyana and other tropical forests
Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL)
Kyle Murphy is a Policy Manager at the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL), a global network of 145 affiliated professors from 49 universities whose
mission is to reduce poverty by ensuring that policy is informed by
scientific evidence. At J-PAL, Kyle manages the Agriculture sector and the Agricultural Technology Adoption Initiative (ATAI).
Kyle shares lessons on what works with
foundations, NGOs, governments and others and helps them integrate
rigorous evidence into their program and policy processes. Kyle
holds a master's degree in public policy from the University of
Michigan’s Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy where he focused on
international development and program evaluation. As a student, he was a
Coverdell Fellow, a Dow Sustainability Fellow, and worked with Global
Detroit and Recovery Park to help design their social impact monitoring
Quantitative Genetics Expert
Texas A&M University
Dr. Seth Murray is a quantitative geneticist focused on improving the productivity, sustainability (economic and environmental) and quality of agricultural production through scientific research and development. He works primarily in maize (corn). He uses high-throughput field phenotyping (UAVs/drones, ground vehicles, NIRS); molecular quantitative genetic discovery (including QTL mapping, GWAS); statistical modeling and novel analysis methods (including big data and metanalysis); development of new breeding and genetics approaches (including use of computer simulations); and applied field breeding (classical and molecular). Dr. Murray is the founder and editor of “The Plant Phenome Journal” and recipient of the Crop Science Society of America Young Crop Scientist Award.
Climate Change Expert
Earth Institute, Columbia University
Walter E. Baethgen is head of the Regional and Sectorial Research Program and leader of the Latin America and the Caribbean program in the International Research Institute for Climate and Society at the Earth Institute, Columbia University. At the IRI he has been establishing regional research programs that aim to improve climate risk assessment and risk management in agriculture, health, water resources, and natural ecosystems. He was a lead author for IPCC’s Second (1995) and Third (2001) Assessments Reports and contributing author for the Fourth Assessment (2007). Baethgen has acted as a consultant for the Inter-American Development Bank, UNDP, UNIDO, FAO, the IAEA, The World Bank and IICA. Baethgen obtained his PhD and MS degrees in crop and soil environmental sciences from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and his BS in agricultural engineering from the University of Uruguay. He has more than 200 publications to his credit. In 2010 he received the Morosoli de Oro award, considered one of the highest recognitions of contribution to Uruguayan culture.
Taya Brown is a Ph.D. student in the Horticulture Department at Texas A&M University focused on food security issues, specifically related to small-scale farming in rural areas, and monitoring and evaluation of international agricultural development projects. Originally from Seattle, Washington, Taya has a strong background in agriculture and plant science. She spent several years working for a small-scale organic farm in Washington State and at the orchard on Washington State University’s (WSU) campus. She holds bachelors degrees from WSU in agricultural food systems, where she majored in organic agriculture and botany, and minored in horticulture and soil science. As part of an undergraduate internship, Taya designed and built a passive-air solar food dehydrator to address the needs of a community in rural Rwanda. In her time at Texas A&M she has won several awards for her service to the university and her promise as a future leader in the international agricultural development community. She spent the summer of 2015 in Guatemala among the indigenous Maya-Itza population, learning Spanish while assisting efforts to preserve the natural and cultural heritage of the Petén region. She is currently developing an instrument to collect feedback data on the social impact of development assistance given to small-scale coffee farmers affected by the recent coffee leaf rust disorder epidemic.
Fabian Echeverria Beirute
Fabian is a researcher and professor from Costa Rica pursuing a Ph.D. degree in Plant Breeding in the Department of Soil and Crops at Texas A&M University, with a funding from WCR and the Technological Institute of Costa Rica (ITCR). He holds an M.Sc. degree from the University of Costa Rica (UCR), with his investigation on prospecting candidate resistance genes from Coffea germoplam for controlling the Mycena citricolor fungi. For almost eight years he worked on coffee breeding and phytopathology for the Center of Investigation in Coffee (CICAFE) of the Institute of Coffee of Costa Rica (ICAFE) and as a breeding professor at ITCR.
His research in Texas A&M University is emphasized in evaluation the gene expression of coffee plants under physiological stress such as leaf rust and yield and it's impact on the quality.
Chief Institutional Relations & Sustainability Officer, Lavazza
Mario Cerutti was born in Torino (Italy) in 1958. He graduated in Business Administration at the University of Torino and got an MBA from the University of Dallas. He has been working in Lavazza since 1986, currently he is Chief Institutional Relations and Sustainability Officer in Lavazza. He is currently President of the European Coffee Federation (ECF) – he served as president in ECF also from 2004 to 2007. He is currently serving as President of Italian Coffee Committee (CIdC - Comitato Italiano del Caffè) - the association of large Italian coffee companies - , as Chairman of the Coffee & Climate Steering Committee and as member of the board of the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee (ISIC). He is board member of ICP (International Coffee Partners).
Senior Vice President, Strategic Sourcing for National DCP, LLC
Regina Chin serves as the Senior Vice President, Strategic Sourcing for National DCP, LLC (NDCP), the $2 billion supply chain management cooperative serving the franchisees of Dunkin’ Donuts. With more than 15 years of sourcing and supply chain experience, Regina helped to build NDCP’s strategic sourcing team from the ground-up following the merger that created the company in 2012.
Throughout her career, Regina has worked for various industries including Pharmaceutical, Consumer Packaged Goods, and Food & Beverage focusing on Strategic Sourcing and Supply Chain. Prior to joining NDCP, her past work experiences included Perrigo Company, The Clorox Company, Cox Communications and Coca-Cola Refreshments.
An industry thought leader, Regina holds a position on the Board of Directors for the Joy in Childhood Foundation, Dunkin’ Brands’ non-profit foundation that has donated more than $12 million to national and local charities. She previously served as a Board member for the National Restaurant Association’s Supply Chain Executive Study Group. Regina holds a bachelor’s
degree in Communication and Media Studies from Michigan State University.
President & CEO, Swiss Water Decaffeinated Company
Frank Dennis brings more than two decades of experience in the coffee industry to his role at Swiss Water Decaffeinated Coffee Incorporated. From his early days working in packaged goods marketing with Braun Canada and Kraft Foods Canada, he led the $300 million Kraft coffee portfolio in the late 1990s and was responsible for the sale of the Swiss Water Division to private equity interests in 2000. Today, as President and CEO of Swiss Water, he has led the growth of the business and the brand as well as the extended development of the chemical-free decaffeination sector. He holds a BA in Economics from the University of Western Ontario, and an MBA from the University of Toronto.
Treasurer of the Board
Vice President of Operations and Coffee Buyer, Java City
Shawn Hamilton is the Vice-President of Operations and Coffee Buyer for Java City, located in Sacramento, California. Since 1985, Java City has pioneered initiatives designed to enhance the global village, support the communities and protect the environment. Shawn has been involved in the Specialty Coffee industry since 1987. During his tenure he has worked in almost every facet of the industry from Barista, packaging, roasting, quality control, coffee buying, purchasing, futures and options hedging to executive management. He was instrumental in several mergers and acquisitions within the industry. His experience also includes a proven dedication to the industry and volunteering. Shawn has been a volunteer in Colombia to teach and evaluate cuppers for Coffee Corps, participates as a lead judge in the annual Cupping for Quality for the Rainforest Alliance, and has been a judge for Cup of Excellence. In addition, he is one of the founding members of the Roasters Guild and served for six years on the Executive Council. While on the Executive Council, Shawn served as Chairman and was instrumental in the creation of the overall structure of the Guild. He has also served on the Board of the Pacific Coast Coffee Association.
Jose L. Ramirez
VP of Coffee Strategy & Innovation at Farmer Brothers
Farmer Brothers (CBI) played a founding role in the development of WCR. In the past 100+ years, Farmer Brothers has grown to become one of the leading coffee-focused foodservice suppliers. Recently, Farmer Brothers has refocused on taking a leadership position in the coffee industry, including the National Coffee Association (NCA), Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) and Pacific Coast Coffee Association (PCCA). Farmer Brothers has also revamped its sustainability programs, ramping up our recycling efforts and driving large reductions in water usage and greenhouse gas emissions.
Jose joined Farmer Brothers in 2009 and has held various leadership roles. Today he is VP of Coffee Strategy & Innovation responsible for overall coffee strategy as it pertains to procurement, vendor management, coffee quality, and product development. He works directly with customers, sales, and marketing in business development. Jose also works on M&A activity, from initial step of evaluating potential targets to final integration. Since joining the industry in 2000, he has been involved in various associations including as President of PCCA, committees with SCA and speaking engagements domestic and international.
President, Intelligentsia Coffee and Tea
James McLaughlin is the president of Intelligentsia Coffee and Tea. Previously he served as the company’s Chief Operating Officer, General Counsel, and Director of Green Coffee. James' work with coffee began in earnest in Taquaritinga do Norte, Brazil where he was the director of an organic shade coffee farm. Prior to that James was a corporate lawyer for Kirkland & Ellis LLP. He received his law degree from Northwestern University School of Law.
Chief Sustainability Officer, Keurig Green Mountain
With a background in secondary education and sustainability, Monique has an MBA and an MS from the University of Michigan.
Regional Director and Global Sustainability Advisor, ECOM
Eric Poncon, Regional Director and Global Sustainability Advisor at ECOM Agroindustrial Corp., works to create shared value in some of the most remote areas of the planet. His goal is to ensure producer profitability and real sustainability that leads to poverty alleviation and economic development. With a keen understanding of the importance of R&D and on how traders can be agents of sustainability, he sheds light into black box supply chains, helping to drive the paradigm shift in coffee sustainability that consumers are demanding.
Howard G. Buffett Foundation Chair on Conflict and Development
Edwin C. Price leads the Center on Conflict and Development at Texas A&M, seeking to create and utilize an understanding of the role of development in preventing and mitigating armed conflict. He conducts research, teaching and development on fragile states, including Iraq, Afghanistan, Southern Sudan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and other conflict affected regions.
He was the founding director of the Norman Borlaug Institute for International Agriculture. Within the U.S. university community he has pioneered public-private sector partnerships including formation with the McDonald’s Corporation of the American Potato Trade Association; management of The Coca-Cola Company/McDonald’s/Conservation International Amisconde Project for Central America; and the InterAmerican Development Bank program on intellectual property rights and private investment in research in the Americas. He served in many agricultural research and development roles for the international agricultural research centers, US Department of Defense, US Department of Agriculture, US Agency for International Development, International Fund for Agricultural Development and other UN Agencies.
Executive Director, Specialty Coffee Association
Ric Rhinehart is currently serving as the Executive Director of the Specialty Coffee Association of America. Prior to taking on this position he was the President of a Los Angeles, California based roaster and retailer. Mr. Rhinehart has over the past twenty years held executive positions in several coffee and tea firms. Mr. Rhinehart has designed, developed, and produced a wide range of both tea and coffee products and is co-author of Tea Basics a primer on premium tea, published by John Wiley & Sons in 1998. Mr. Rhinehart is a frequent presenter and panelist on industry issues and trends at trade shows and symposiums. He has served as a Director and Vice President for the Specialty Coffee Association of America, as a Director for Coffee Kids, the Coffee Quality Institute and he was a founding member of the American Premium Tea Institute, where he served on the Board of Directors and as President.
Chairman of the Board, Community Coffee Company
Matt Saurage is Chairman of the Board and the fourth generation in the largest family-owned coffee brand in America. Saurage believes in coffee research, particularly that which focuses on origin and agriculture, and is pleased to be part of a research program that allows information to be shared broadly and freely within the coffee industry.
Founder and CEO, Counter Culture Coffee
Brett Smith is the co-founder and President of Counter Culture Coffee of Durham, North Carolina. Founded in 1995, Counter Culture Coffee is a different kind of coffee company. Dedicated to finding and bringing to market the most exciting, authentic, and delicious coffees in the world, Counter Culture Coffee approaches their work with a passion for the ideal of coffee perfection, a dedication to real sustainability, and a commitment to cutting-edge education throughout the coffee chain. Brett also serves as a director for SouthWings; a non-profit promoting environmental conservation through aviation.
Senior Vice President of Sustainability, Royal Cup Coffee and Tea
Jim Smith is the Senior Vice President of Sustainability at Royal Cup Coffee and Tea headquartered in Birmingham, AL and represents third-generation leadership within the family-owned organization. Royal Cup was founded in 1896 and is dedicated to providing high quality coffees and fine teas to customers nationwide. As one of World Coffee Research’s founding members, Royal Cup continues to actively support the vision and shared responsibility to lead in industry-wide educational efforts to sustain and grow the supply of quality coffee not only for today, but for the generations to come. Jim also serves on Royal Cup’s Board of Directors.
Furio Suggi Liverani
Director of Research, illycaffè s.p.a
Furio Suggi Liverani is director of illycaffè Research, member of illycaffè strategic board and past President of Biosensor Technologies (an Area Science Park biotech company).He has contributed to several projects of industrial and laboratory organization and to the development of illycaffè operation information system. He has developed technologies and innovative products such as an electronic coffee sorting machine. In 1993 he introduced the use of Internet and multimedia to the company, actualising in 1996 the web site www.illy.com . In 1998 he founded, on behalf of illycaffè, AromaLab, a laboratory focused to the study of coffee chemistry, located in the Area Science Park of Trieste. Currently he is board member of Qualicaf, president of coffee department of Trieste Industrial Association, member of scientific committee of ASIC (International Association for Coffee Science) and member of the “ Italian Congress of Artificial Intelligence” committee.
Secretary of the Board
Vice President of Coffee Research & Development, J. M. Smucker Company
Jim Trout has more than 23 years of product development and innovation management experience, including 14 years in coffee. In 2008, Jim joined Smucker from The Procter & Gamble Company as part of the Folgers acquisition. In his current role, Jim oversees coffee research and development, the coffee innovation portfolio, as well as several strategic innovation partnerships. Prior to Smucker, Jim held numerous R&D management and staff roles at Procter & Gamble in the areas of process development, formulation, device development, and program management.
Jim’s career has focused primarily on the food and beverage industry, and has spanned several product categories including oils, coffee, and salted snacks. Jim currently holds 18 U.S. patents. He graduated from Ohio State University with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering. Jim lives near Cleveland in Broadview Heights, Ohio with his wife and three children. In his spare time, he is a board member of BioHio Research Park and volunteers with the Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park.
Vice Chair of the Board
Vice President, Peet's Coffee & Tea
Doug Welsh is Vice President of Coffee for Peet’s Coffee & Tea. Peet’s was established in 1966 in Berkeley, California, fount of the farm to table renaissance in American foodways. Originator Alfred Peet brought the focus of the industry to the finest grades of Arabica coffee and the pursuit of roasting as a craft. As only the third Roastmaster at the pioneering company and leader of the quality movement.
Doug is responsible for coffee overall, from sourcing to the blending, roasting, and brewing of a superior customer experience. Among other international fora, he has served as a judge at Cup of Excellence, speaker at Symposium, and is past President of the Pacific Coast Coffee Association. Doug resides in Berkeley and holds degrees in Sociology and Law from the University of California.
Supply Director, Taylors of Harrogate
Keith Writer is the Supply Director and an experienced member of the leadership team responsible for creating long-term strategy and the day to day running of Taylors. With overall responsibility for all direct purchases including coffee, tea and packaging in addition to research and development and sustainability for the Taylors business.
With over twenty years of experience Keith has traveled extensively around the world seeking out the top quality teas and coffees enjoyed by Taylors of Harrogate customers, including bringing to market new organic teas, rare teas and coffees and a herbal range. Travel is integral to his job and he spends several months in the course of the year visiting suppliers and growers worldwide, creating and sustaining strong direct relationships that are key to the business' approach to sourcing. Keith is a past member Board member of the Ethical Tea Partnership, United Kingdom Tea Council and British Coffee Association.
Email: Please see the "Who We Are" section for staff emails.
10940 SW Barnes Road #334
Portland OR 97225
106 rue Breteuil
Central American Hub
Beneficio Las Tres Puertas
Calle a Ciudad de Los Niños
Santa Ana, El Salvador
Where else to find us
We have core scientific and administrative staff based in France, El Salvador, and Guatemala City. Our communications office is located in Portland, Oregon.
Please contact Hanna Neuschwander, email@example.com, 503-560-7828