Michael K. Stern, PhD
Head of The Climate Corporation and Digital Farming
Mike leads a diverse team that develops digital tools to help the world’s farmers understand their fields in ways that have never been possible before. As a member of the Executive Leadership Team for Bayer Crop Science and Head of the Climate Corporation, Mike's role is at the intersection of agriculture and digital technology.
Prior to his roles at The Climate Corporation, Mike led Monsanto’s Row Crop Business in the Americas with responsibility for its corn, soy, cotton, specialty crops, licensing and crop protection businesses across the regions. During his tenure at Monsanto, which began in 1988, Stern has served in leadership roles for a variety of its businesses, including: Vice President, U.S. Seeds and Traits; President, American Seeds; CEO of Renessen LLC, a biotechnology joint venture with Cargill; and Director of Technology, Agricultural Productivity.
Chief Science Officer
Sam leads the Science organization at The Climate Corporation, where he drives the company’s research and development efforts in data science, measurement and field research. Sam’s connection to agriculture started young, growing up on a grain and livestock farm in west-central Illinois. He brings more than two decades of experience in plant breeding and global agricultural development – contributing nearly 60 publications and patents relating to advances in agricultural technology. Prior to joining The Climate Corporation, Sam led Monsanto’s Global Plant Breeding team, overseeing one of the largest, most integrated plant genetics programs in the world. He holds a B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. in genetics and plant breeding from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.
Chief People Officer
Meg joined The Climate Corporation in August of 2015 and leads the People Operations team. Prior to joining Climate Meg was the Vice President of Human Resources at Zynga. During her time at Zynga Meg led HR Business Partnerships, Compensation, Benefits, Learning and Development and Recruiting. Prior to joining Zynga Meg was the Director of Worldwide Human Resources at Openwave Systems in Redwood City and has led HR at several technology startups in the Bay Area. Meg has a B.A in Anthropology from McGill University in Montreal.
Vice President, Data And Analytics
Dan leads the Data and Analytics organization at The Climate Corporation, where he is focused on building an analytics platform to generate product insights that help deliver the best agriculture data products and user experience. Dan has 25 years of experience in Silicon Valley in analytics and engineering in general for large scale systems. Prior roles include Vice President Data and Analytics at Teespring.com, CTO at Reputation.com and a General Manager at Zynga for 5 years leading the Analytics and Platform engineering teams. He also spent a little over 16 years in the Biotech space in laboratory research and later bioinformatics engineering. He holds a B.S. in biochemistry from Vassar College and a Master's degree in computer information systems from Golden Gate University.
Vice President, Engineering
Avery leads The Climate Corporation's Engineering team. He has 20 years of leadership and technical experience in Silicon Valley, with a focus in transformative and hypergrowth companies. Prior to The Climate Corporation, Avery was VP of Engineering and Research at Wealthfront where he led the Engineering, Research, and Data teams. Previously, he was Senior Director of Engineering at LinkedIn where he led Growth, Consumer, and related infrastructure groups from early days to post-IPO. Earlier in Avery’s career, he held numerous senior technical and architecture roles with RSA and two enterprise venture-backed startups. He earned summa cum laude B.S. in Applied and Industrial / Computational Mathematics, B.A. in Economics, and Entrepreneurship from the Eller College of Management at University of Arizona.
Chief Commercial Officer
John Raines leads the global commercial sales and operations functions for The Climate Corporation's suite of software and enabling hardware offerings. Previously, John was the U.S. Customer Advocacy Lead, championing the development of Monsanto's farmer advocacy campaigns and ag youth outreach. John also was Business Affairs Lead in Corporate Affairs, served as General Manager for Monsanto's Australia, New Zealand, and Philippines business units, and served as Vice President of Marketing for Monsanto's U.S. ag portfolio. Early in John's career, he held multiple sales and management roles, including serving as the U.S. Cotton Marketing Manager, launching Monsanto's first cotton biotechnology products. John has a B.S. in Agricultural Systems Management and Marketing from the University of Missouri – Columbia.
Vice President, Strategy
Vilas joined The Climate Corporation in 2015 and leads Climate’s strategy and business development efforts. Prior to joining The Climate Corporation, Vilas worked at McKinsey & Company, where he led strategy development engagements for Fortune 100 food & agriculture companies and government agencies worldwide. Vilas has an B.A. in Economics from Stanford University and a Masters in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School.
IT Business Partner
Kristine leads The Climate Corporation’s digital-based customer and business strategy, leveraging new technologies to help deliver on the future vision of the company, and delivered efficiencies through enterprise capabilities. Kristine has held several leadership roles during more than 20 years within the legacy Monsanto IT organization, driving customer centricity through digital capabilities and accelerating the use of data and analytics to drive decision making. Passionate about community development and a champion of inclusion and diversity, Kristine is actively involved in several community and professional organizations, with leadership roles in various United Way campaigns and having served as executive sponsor of Monsanto’s Women in IT organization. Kristine received her Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA) from Washington University in St. Louis and a Bachelor’s Degree specializing in Information Systems and International Business from Fontbonne University.
Vice President, Law, Patents & Compliance
John leads The Climate Corporation’s legal team. Before joining Climate in 2018, John served as the North American commercial law lead for the legacy Monsanto business acquired by Bayer. Prior to that role, he spent nine years in Asia, serving as the company’s law lead for Asia and Africa. Prior to joining Monsanto in 2003, John spent 12 years in Washington, D.C., where he served as domestic policy advisor to Vice President Al Gore, and held several senior positions in the U.S. Department of Agriculture. He also worked for U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy, Mark Dayton, and John McCain, served as counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, and worked closely with the Senate Agriculture Committee during his time in Washington. John received his Bachelor of Arts and Juris Doctorate degrees from the University of Arizona and an LLM in International and Comparative Law from Georgetown University.
Chief Technology Officer and Head of Product
Mark leads the development of a unified technical vision, architecture, and roadmap to help The Climate Corporation deliver an industry-leading digital agriculture platform. Mark has 18 years of experience in Silicon Valley and previously served as a Director of Mobile Product Excellence at Yahoo, the Chief Technology Officer of Mobile Technology at Zynga, and the Founder and Chief Technology Officer at HipLogic. Mark has a B.S. in Computer Science from Purdue University.