FIC has established an Advisory Board consisting of a globally-recognized leaders in the food industry. Each brings a unique and diverse perspective to the Center, and a global depth and breadth of expertise.
President & CEO of BlueNalu
Lou Cooperhouse is co-founder, president and CEO of BlueNalu, a global leader in providing cell-cultured seafood products. Cooperhouse has extensive leadership experience in food innovation and technology commercialization, forged during his 35+ year career in the food industry. Lou previously served as co-founder and executive director of the Rutgers Food Innovation Center, where he led the program for approximately 15 years. During this time, he also served as president of the New Jersey Business Incubation Network; executive director and president of the New Jersey Food Processors Association; and on the Board of Directors of the International Business Innovation Association. His previous roles included serving as president of Food Spectrum, president & COO of F&S Produce; and as co-founder, president and CEO of MenuDirect Corporation. Earlier in his career, he served in leadership roles at Campbell’s Soup, ConAgra and Nestle-funded Culinary Brands. He received his MS in Food Science and BS in Microbiology, both from Rutgers University.
President of Gellert Global Group
Andrew M. Gellert is the president of Gellert Global Group headquartered in Elizabeth, New Jersey. The Gellert Global Group bring a broad variety of imported food products to all aspects of the food industry. The combined revenues of the Group exceed $1 billion. Andy is an active member of the Cornell College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. He is on the Board of Directors of the Association of Food Industries Incorporated (AFI). He is a member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO) New York Metro Chapter and is a graduate of Cornell University with a degree in food marketing.
Partner of Elikonos Capital Partners SA
Managing Partner & CEO of The Food Institute
Brian Choi is managing partner & CEO of The Food Institute, the leading source for food industry news, data, and market trends. The Food Institute is the “Bloomberg of the food industry” offering the very best of B2B multimedia content including news, podcasts, digital video, webinars, reports, and live programming. Brian is also an experienced financial executive in the Food & Agricultural industry. Earlier in his career, Brian served as VP of Finance & Business Development at Woerner Holdings, LP, a single-family investment office focused on private equity investments in the food, beverage, and agricultural industries. Previous to Woerner Holdings, Brian worked at Ernst & Young, Lehman Brothers and Goldman Sachs. He is a CFA Charterholder and holds a Finance degree from the University of British Columbia.
Director, Resource and Economic Development of Rutgers NJAES
Peggy Brennan-Tonetta is senior associate director for the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station (NJAES) and director, Resource and Economic Development at Rutgers University. In this role, she is responsible for all NJAES off-campus facilities including research farms, marine research stations, service labs and business incubators. She is also the co-founder and administrator-in-charge of the Rutgers Food Innovation Center, an internationally recognized food business incubation program. Peggy has a distinguished record of developing and leading economic development initiatives at the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station, Rutgers University, and the state. She is an economist with expertise in economic development strategies and impact assessment. She received a B.S. in Economics, M.S. in Agricultural Economics and a Ph.D. in Public Policy all from Rutgers.