The Renk Agribusiness Institute, originated with a gift from the Renk Family of Sun Prairie, Wisconsin to coordinate agribusiness teaching, research, and outreach activity on the UW-Madison campus utilizing resources and excellence between the College of Agricultural & Life Sciences (CALS) and the UW-Madison School of Business. The Institute offers financial assistance, professional networking and developmental internships and activities to agribusiness students seeking a Masterís in Business Administration and undergraduates enrolled in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences and Agricultural and Applied Economics. The Institute also organizes agribusiness research studies and designs Agribusiness Executive Management programs and training.
Policy direction for the Institute resides with the UW-Madison Deans of CALS, the School of Business and the Renk Council. Faculty of the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics in CALS and the Business School develop and administer Institute programs. The Institute works with the UW Center for Cooperatives, The Babcock Institute for International Dairy Research and Development, UW Center for Dairy Profitability, and various agribusiness industry groups to fulfill its mission.
Board of Visitors
The Renk Agribusiness Institute is pleased to announce its inaugural board:
- Dr. Randall L. Dimond, Vice President and Chief Technical Officer, Promega Corp., and Adjunct Professor of Bactieriology, University of Wisconsin - Madison. Dr. Dimond has a wealth of experience in agribusiness and life sciences. He is an accomplished research scientist (click here for a list of his publications R Dimond Publications) and he has served on a diverse array of boards and advisory posts. (Click here to view his curriculum vitae R Dimond CV). As a recent member of the CALS Board of Visitors and an active member of the life sciences community Dr. Dimond brings a strong scientific perspective to the Renk Agribusiness board.
- Dr. William D. Dobson, Professor Emeritus at the University of Wisconsin - Madison and original director of the Renk Agribusiness Institute. Dr. Dobson worked diligently to create the vision and mission of the Renk Agribusiness Institute. He guided the first group of students through the Agribusiness MBA and developed the Agricultural Executive Management Program in conjunction with Randy Fortenbery and Bruce Jones. While retired, Dr. Dobson has continued to travel globally and prepare economic analyses for a variety of industries. Dr. Dobson's current research and consulting interests are international consulting in the areas of agribusiness, international marketing/trade, and agricultural policy. (click here to view Dr. Dobson's c.v. W.D. Dobson c.v.
- Derek Klaehn, Derek Klaehn is President of Dairy Systems and Flavors for the Kerry Ingredients and Flavors North America region. With North American operations based in Beloit, Wisconsin, Kerry Worldwide supplies over 15,000 food, food ingredients and flavor products to customers in more than 140 countries. Derek joined Kerry as a corporate buyer in 2003 upon receiving an MBA in Agribusiness from the Renk Agribusiness Institute at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He then moved to Mexico and spent three years as purchasing manager for Kerry Mexico. He returned to the U.S. into a general management position and assumed his current role in 2007. Prior to receiving his MBA, Derek, worked with the World Bank Group in Washington, DC and served as a Peace Corps volunteer in rural Guatemala. He holds a BS in Food Science from University of Wisconsin-River Falls.
- Jeff Renk, President and Sales Manager, Renk Seed Company, Sun Prairie, WI. Mr. Renk has spent his career at the Renk Seed Company progressing through a variety of work responsibilities and improving the family business. He is currently serving in the rotating position of President for his family business, in addition to his standing duties as Sales Manager and VP of Research.