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INTERNATIONAL FOOD AND AGRIBUSINESS MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION

IFAMA 30-Years Past-Presidents Interview Project

The following interviews were conducted by IFAMA Young Board members in 2020 to help them learn more about the history of IFAMA while helping to preserve IFAMA’s legacy.

1. Ray Goldberg (USA) 1990–1991

2. Hans Johr (Switzerland) 2003–2004

3. Walter Armbruster (USA) 2004–2005

4. Hector Laurence (Argentina) 2005–2006 & 2018–2021

5. Gianluigi Zenti (Italy) 2006–2007

6. Paul "Tuck" Jasper (USA)2009–2011

7. Mary Shelman (USA)2011–2013

8. Johan van Rooyen (South Africa) 2015–2018


Ray Goldberg (USA) Conference location: Boston 1990–1991

One of the founding fathers of IFAMA (IAMA) and IFAMA’s first president. He coined the term “agribusiness”

Hans Johr (Switzerland) Conference location: Cancun & Montreux  2003–2004

Retired in July 2020 as Corporate head of Agriculture for Nestle. Co-Founder of SAI Platform.

Walter Armbruster (USA) Conference location: Chicago 2004–2005

Walt is President Emeritus, Farm Foundation in the United States for 30 years. Formerly  he was President of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association’s (AAEA) and Secretary-Treasurer of the International Association of Agricultural Economists (IAAE) from 1991-2018 and Editor of Choices Magazine.


Hector Laurence (ARG) 2005–2006 & 2018 – 2021 Conference: Buenos Aires, Hangzhou & 2 Online.

Hector Laurence is founder and President of McLaren Holdings S.A, a family agribusiness company. Currently, he is president of the International Food and Agribusiness Management Association—IFAMA. He is the only IFAMA president to serve two terms.

As a lawyer and specialist in national and international agribusiness, Laurence has worked on environmental issues for over 30 years. For over a decade, Laurence served as Director of Operations for Pioneer Hi-Bred International-Latin American Division. Additionally, Laurence served as president of FVSA (Argentina Wildlife Foundation) for 10 years and was also a council member for the World Wildlife Fund International.

2006–2007: Gianluigi Zenti (Italy) Conference: Parma, Italy

Gianluigi started a national US initiative that has significantly reshaped how American consumers value authentic Italian cuisine. Working for Barilla since 1997, he was President of Academic Barilla until 2006-2016.  Has advanced the brands of Barilla and Bertozzi.

2009–2011: Paul "Tuck" Jasper (USA) Conferences: Boston & Frankfurt

Tuck served as President of Shurfine International, a primary distributor of private-label and major-brand goods sold by grocers throughout the United States. Prior to that, he had held another highly successful career with Kroger, America’s largest retail grocery chain.  In more recent years, Jasper has been the force behind a few small start-ups which include a line of energy drinks and owns a trucking fleet that delivers food the last mile to retail chains.

2011–2013: Mary Shelman (USA) Shanghai & Atlanta

Formerly Director of Agribusiness program at Harvard. She is IFAMA’s first women president.


2015–2018: Johan van Rooyen (South Africa) Denmark, Miami and Argentina
Johan is Director of the Centre for Agribusiness and professor in Agricultural Economics at Stellenbosch University South Africa.


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