Christine Daugherty and Marc Drouin Join Leading Harvest Board of Directors

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, March 17, 2023

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Contact: Maggie Eason,

Daugherty of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Drouin of PSP Investments will serve on the newly formed International Committee of the Board of Directors to inform Leading Harvest’s expansion strategy outside the U.S.

Washington, D.C., February 6, 2023 – Leading Harvest, a nonprofit advancing sustainable agriculture and food production through its unique universal Farmland Management Standard, today announced that Christine Daugherty, Deputy Director at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Marc Drouin, Senior Managing Director at PSP Investments, have joined the Leading Harvest Board of Directors and will serve on the newly formed International Committee of the Board to support the increasingly global focus of Leading Harvest. The move follows the rapid expansion of Leading Harvest beyond the U.S. in its mission to harmonize sustainability verification and continuous improvement across commodities, continents, and markets.

Christine Daugherty joins the Board of Directors with deep experience as a global sustainability strategist. As Deputy Director of Business Development for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Daugherty works with strategic public and private sector partners to present solutions to agriculture, nutrition, sanitation, and climate challenges. Before joining the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Daugherty served as vice president of sustainable agriculture and responsible sourcing at PepsiCo, where she developed agricultural solutions for global transformation and innovation. In addition, she previously led sustainable food production efforts as vice president of sustainable foods at Tyson Foods.

Marc Drouin joins the Board of Directors as an expert in natural resource investments. At PSP Investments, Drouin serves as the Senior Managing Director of Real Assets and Global Head of Natural Resources Investments. In this role, he focuses on finding partners dedicated to sustainability, health and safety, community engagement, and efficient use of resources. Before joining PSP Investments, Marc was the Head of Group Business Development for Anglo American and Vice President of Corporate Development for Alcan.

Daugherty and Drouin will also join Leading Harvest’s newly formed International Committee. The Committee focuses on creating a go-forward governance and operating strategy for the organization to ensure the appropriate application of and stakeholder input for Leading Harvest programs in its operating regions. Leading Harvest launched in the U.S. where it has enrolled 1,500,000 acres in its sustainability standard across 30 states and 100 crop types. Late last year Leading Harvest completed an Australian pilot program, where 650,000 hectares enrolled and the Standard will formally launch in the first quarter of 2023.

“While Leading Harvest launched in the U.S., the organization’s ambition was always global. The success of our pilot in Australia and demand from markets around the world has caused us to expand our footprint in an exciting way,” said Leading Harvest Board Chairman Larry Selzer, president and CEO of The Conservation Fund. “The time is now right to consider how Leading Harvest is governed and operated and to make the appropriate adjustments in our model toreflect the scope and future of the organization. I have directed the International Committee to develop recommendations for the Board on how we should organize ourselves to meet the needs of the organization and the communities we serve.”

In addition to Daugherty and Drouin, the International Committee will be chaired by Oliver Williams IV, global head of agriculture investments at Manulife Investment Management, and will include Dr. Bruce J. Sherrick, director of the TIAA Center for Farmland Research at the University of Illinois, and Suzy Friedman, senior director of food policy at the World Wildlife Fund.

More information on Leading Harvest can be found at

About Leading Harvest

Leading Harvest is a nonprofit organization committed to increasing adoption of sustainability practices in agriculture. It was formally organized in 2020 by and for all stakeholders across the agricultural value chain—from farmland owners to companies to communities. The organization provides assurance programs comprised of standards, audit procedures, training and education, and reporting and claim offerings that are optimized for flexibility, scalability, and impact.