This group of 18 future leaders represents nearly every aspect of the almond industry — from growers and pest control advisors to food safety specialists and grant writers.
With the help of mentors, participants will spend the next year preparing to become leaders within their communities and the California almond industry.
Participants will receive hands-on experience and training in a wide variety of topic areas such as food safety, biomass, honey extraction and nutrition research.
They will also gain a clear understanding of current social, political, scientific and economic issues facing the almond industry, and learn how all sectors along the almond supply chain work together to provide a safe, sustainable product.
“Acceptance into this program is an honor, and participants are selected based on their passion and commitment to moving the industry ahead,” said Jenny Nicolau, manager, Industry Relations, ABC. “Twenty, thirty, forty years from now, we will look around the industry and see our greatest industry leaders as graduates from the Almond Leadership Program, and they will look at one another and see decades of service and friendship.”
At the end of the year, participants will present their findings from a year-long self-directed project designed to advance industry knowledge in an area of interest to them.
In the past, these projects have led to important breakthroughs for the industry.
Sullivan Grosz is a farm agent for Pearson Realty, the largest agriculture real estate brokerage in California. One of the areas Grosz specializes in is representing buyers and sellers of almond orchards.
Cristina Davis is a senior staffing consultant at PrideStaff Financial, where she manages and mentors a small team, and is heavily involved with local agricultural companies.