Andrea Illy is the Chairman of illycaffè, a 100% family-owned Benefit Company founded in 1933 with the mission of offering the greatest coffee to the world. For 22 years, until 2016, he served as the company’s Chief Executive Officer.
Since 1990, chiefly under Mr. Illy’s leadership, illycaffè has recorded double-digit growth, and has become the most global coffee brand and quality leader. The company is famous for its innovation in espresso technology, and pioneered significant advances in its industry, such as directly sourcing coffee from growers and paying a premium on top of market prices, establishing the University of Coffee to propagate coffee knowledge, and developing the first-ever third-party sustainability certification for a value chain. illycaffè has been recognized as the most sustainable company in the coffee sector (ICRT, 2014), as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies (Ethisphere Institute, 2013-2019). The company won the Italian Best Performance Award in 2017.
Mr. Illy collaborates with numerous global associations and organizations related to coffee.
Recognized as a coffee authority, Mr. Illy’s writings are published on a regular basis, and he serves as a speaker at major conferences throughout the world. In 1995, he published Espresso Coffee: The Chemistry of Quality (Academic Press), now in its second edition, and his memoir, A Coffee Dream, was published in 2015 (Codice Edizioni). In 2018 was published Italia Felix (Piemme), a conversation with the journalist Francesco Antonioli. He was the main contributor to Altagamma: Strategie per l’Italia d’Eccellenza, published in 2018 (Skyra).
He is a passionate supporter of the stakeholder company business model, and firmly advocates for corporate responsibility as means to improve society. A “humanist chemist,” as he likes to define himself, Mr. Illy also promotes culture and art, a sphere in which illycaffè has always been active. Under his leadership, the Altagamma Foundation was officially recognized as an ambassador of the Italian lifestyle in the world.
Mr. Illy received a degree in Chemistry from the University of Trieste, and an Executive MBA from SDA-Bocconi in Milan. Additionally, he earned a certificate from the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School, and studied Total Quality Management in Japan, Innovation at MIT, Exponential Technologies at Singularity University and Complexity Science at the University of Oxford.
Born in Trieste in 1964, he is married and has three daughters.
Anna Vänskä is committed to work for the sustainable future of coffee. She has worked in the field of coffee sourcing since 2014 and she is familiar with the whole value chain. She spent one year travelling in the countries of origin to understand the everyday life, challenges and rewarding aspects of the work of coffee farmers.
Anna is responsible for sourcing green coffee from 17 origins from Africa, Asia and Latin America. She develops Paulig´s category strategy for green coffee and is a key player in our partnership programmes. Anna loves coffee, she does cupping as a Q-Grader and her favorite coffee is the one she can enjoy at a farm while chatting with the producer.
William “Bill” Murray is President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Coffee Association, U.S.A. (NCA), a role he has held since June 2014. Bill leads NCA’s advocacy, regulatory, and member support activities on behalf of the hundreds of coffee-focused organizations that comprise NCA’s membership.
Prior to joining NCA, Bill was Chief Executive Officer of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), the world’s largest professional society for public relations practitioners and students with more than 32,000 members. Before joining PRSA, Bill worked in Hollywood for more than 20 years, capping his career as Executive Vice President and Co-Chief Operating Officer at the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), which represented the $40 billion U.S.-based audiovisual entertainment industry.
Carlos Mera joined Rabobank’s Agri Commodity Market Research team in 2015 as a senior commodity analyst, having spent over seven years at a large coffee trading house.
Carlos has visited over a thousand coffee farms and is an experienced crop forecaster.
Carlos holds a BSc economics from University of Buenos Aires and a MSc Finance from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Carlos Ortiz is a coffee passionate, intrapreneur and co-founder of the Volcafe Way (Volcafe´s sustainable sourcing strategy).
Carlos graduated as an Agronomist from EARTH University and later furthered his education by completing a masters in Agribusiness. With this unique skillset, Carlos has dedicated his professional career to help coffee growers become entrepreneurs and achieve Sustainable Profitability.
Carlos joined Volcafe in 2008 as a Field Technician and has since developed a prolific and successful career by working in 3 different coffee origins before taking on the challenge of co-founding and managing the Volcafe Way Program. With the implementation of the Program, Carlos has had the possibility to interact with coffee families from 10 different countries around the world, giving him a special understanding of supply chain risks and vulnerabilities around the globe.
Cyrille Jannet is a Board member and serving as Vice President of SCTA (Swiss Coffee Trade Association based on Geneva, Switzerland).
Cyrille is the Managing Director of Keurig Trading where he oversees all Green Coffee procurement & sourcing activities for Keurig Dr Pepper group.
He began his career in coffee 20 years ago in the highlands of Chiapas as a trader with Amsa, a leading Mexican coffee exporting company, part of Ecom Group. He then joined United Coffee & UCC as a Group Buying Director based in Geneva, CH.
Cyrille is a licensed Q Arabica & Robusta Grader, Coffee Processing Course II and serves as a Trustee @ CQI Board.
Dean Sanders is the founder and chairman of GoodBrand, a Corporate Social Innovation Consultancy, part of the global sustainability consultancy group, Anthesis.
Dean seeks to serve ‘challengers’, who are committed to changing the way their business creates value, by delivering strong economic performance and integrating positive social and environmental impact into their strategies. In his work Dean believes that imagination and courage and a commitment to serve the common good are the hallmarks of the wise leaders of the future to whom we look to shape the positive role the private sector must assume for a more sustainable and balanced system.
Dean has worked internationally across a wide range of industries and sustainability focus areas and has been significantly engaged working with the management team of the leading quality coffee company, Nespresso, designing strategies and plans for sustainable coffee sourcing.
Prior to establishing GoodBrand Dean held a number of international marketing and sales positions at Kraft Foods.
He is a frequent speaker, panelist and moderator at sustainability related conferences and events.
Eileen is passionate about coffee and firmly believes that true passion for coffee is contagious. When you express it, you have the ability to inspire others and be inspired by them.
Eileen became Secretary General of the European Coffee Federation in 2017. Before joining ECF, she was Secretary General of the Spanish Coffee Federation for 13 years and simultaneously Secretary General of the Spanish Tea and Herbal Infusions Association for 7 years.
She previously served as Managing Director of the Spanish Cheese Exporting Board for 2 years and worked as Trade Office for the Embassy of Spain in Beijing (China) for another 2 years.
Eileen holds a BSc in Business and Economics (Universidad Complutense of Madrid, Spain) having also studied at the Kovenhavn Business School (Denmark).
He was born in San José, Costa Rica. Being a kid, he enjoyed the mountains, music, books and video games. His first memories among coffee are with his grandmother, who gave him coffee since he was 3 years old, maybe that is why he is so active and curious. When he was 4 or 5 years old, he used to join his father to visit the coffee farms and spent most of his time watching the harvest during that season. 36 years later he enjoys working in this industry that never stops growing and surprising. His passions are the same as the ones being a kid.
Scott Clemons joined Brown Brothers Harriman & Co. in 1990, and has held a variety of investment roles at the firm over the past 30 years. His career began in international equities, where he was an analyst and portfolio manager of European and Asian equities, working out of the firm’s New York and London offices throughout the 1990s. In 2001 he broadened his responsibilities into domestic equity management and research as well, and then from 2005 through 2010 managed the New York office of the firm’s Private Wealth Management business. In 2010 he was appointed Chief Investment Strategist, and is today one of the firm’s primary writers and speakers on topics related to the economy, financial markets and investing. Scott is a frequent contributor to print and broadcast media, and appears regularly in the pages of the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, New York Times and on camera at CNBC, Bloomberg and CNN.
Scott is a Chartered Financial Analyst, and a member of the New York Society of Security Analysts and the CFA Institute. Outside of his professional interests, Scott serves on the boards of the Grolier Club in New York City, as well as the board of the Research Corporation for Science and the Journal of the History of Ideas.
Born and raised in Florida, he is a magna cum laude graduate (Classics) of Princeton University, and lives in Manhattan with his family.
Janina Grabs holds a PhD in Political Science and is a postdoctoral researcher at ETH Zurich’s Environmental Policy Lab. Her work focuses on the governance of sustainability in global value chains, with a special focus on tropical agricultural commodities such as coffee and palm oil. Her work on the effectiveness of private sustainability governance in the coffee sector has been widely recognized, inter alia with APSA’s Virginia M. Walsh Dissertation Award, ECPR’s Giandomenico Majone Prize, and ESG’s Oran R. Young Prize, and is now published in the book “Selling Sustainability Short? The Private Governance of Labor and the Environment in the Coffee Sector” (2020, Cambridge University Press).
Maria Auxiliadora Bonilla Solís was born in San Marcos de Tarrazú in a traditional coffee family. She is a coffee producer and is part of the family project Beneficio Don Mayo, which processes and exports coffee from 2005. She was national Barista Champion in 2013 and 2014, and represented Costa Rica in the World Barista Championships in 2013 and 2014 in Australia and Italy. She founded Cafetería Don Mayo in 2012, and works together with her family in roasting and selling their coffee.
Michael Schaefer is the global lead of food and beverage at Euromonitor International.
He provides insight on consumer trends, product innovations and the evolution of eating and drinking from around the world. Michael is the primary driver for design, development and promotion of Euromonitor’s global restaurant research program, as well as its coverage of the global non-alcoholic drinks industry.
He has been quoted in Bloomberg, Nation’s Restaurant News, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, among others. Michael holds a Master of Arts in Russian and East European Studies from Stanford University and has been at Euromonitor since 2005.
Rami Kuusisto started his coffee journey at Paulig over six years ago. Today he’s a member of the Paulig’s Business Area Finland&Baltics Leadership Team and responsible for all the sales channels and in Finland.
Rami is leading a commercial team, altogether 100 highly skilled coffee and sales enthusiasts who operate in food service, office and retail channels. Consumer First mindset is the base for his work and he always strive to deliver superior consumer experience.
Vern Long is the Chief Executive Officer of World Coffee Research, the world’s first global, industry-led 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 received her PhD in plant breeding from Cornell University.