U.S. China Trade and the Future of Agriculture in the Heartland

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About This Webinar

A significant portion of the US agricultural exports to China is produced in the heartland region.  With the recent trade tension and, now, COVID-19 impact, the agriculture industry in the heartland is facing a lot of uncertainties and challenges. 

In this webinar, we will join a panel of agricultural industry veterans, policy makers, and investors to explore the opportunities and challenges for the future of agriculture in the heartland.


Secretary Tom Vilsack

Tom Vilsack - President and CEO, USDEC - Former Secretary of Agriculture

As president and CEO, Vilsack provides strategic leadership and oversight of USDEC’s global promotional and research activities, regulatory affairs and trade policy initiatives. This includes working with industry leaders to develop a long-term vision for building sales and consumer trust in U.S. dairy.

Hillman Headshot

Jennifer Hillman - Senior Fellow for Trade and International Political Economy at the Council on Foreign Relations

Jennifer A. Hillman is a senior fellow for trade and international political economy at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), specializing in U.S. trade policy, the law and politics of the World Trade Organization (WTO), international organizations, and Brexit.  

Rob Dongoski_Color photo 2020

Rob Dongoski - EY Partner, Global Agribusiness Leader

As EY’s global Agribusiness leader, Rob is at the forefront of industry issues working directly with executives to optimize their approach in the global markets. Rob works across the food and agriculture value chain integrating innovation, driving digital adoption and developing strategy. 

Rajiv Singh - Co-Chairman of FoodShot Global

Co-Chairman of FoodShot Global, an organization empowering ideas to accelerate the transformation to a health, sustainable and equitable food system

Retired CEO of Rabobank North America Wholesale Banking


Lee Strom - Partner in the Open Prairie Rural Opportunities Fund

Leland (Lee) Strom is a partner in the Open Prairie Rural Opportunities Fund, LP, a USDA licensed Rural Business Investment Company (RBIC), is the Former CEO and Chair of the Farm Credit Administration. He also serves as a founding member of The Illinois Agri-Food Alliance, and as President of the Illinois Agricultural Leadership Foundation.

Xue Lei

Dr. Xue Lei - research fellow of Institute for World Economy Studies, Shanghai Institutes for International Studies

Dr. XUE Lei is a research fellow of Institute for World Economy Studies, Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SIIS). He earned a Ph.D. degree in International Law at the East China University of Political Science and Law in 2010.



Jim Schultz - Founder Open Prairie

Jim Schultz is the founder of Open Prairie and is responsible for the management of four private equity funds with investments in innovative technologies spanning agriculture, medical devices, and information systems.  

Funds invested by Open Prairie have resulted in two successful IPO’s and created over 4,000 jobs across 22 portfolio investments.  His current fund strategy is focused on agri-business investments in rural America under a USDA licensed rural business investment program (RBIP).



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