Chief Executive Officer
Jim grew up on a family corn and soybean farm in Hubbard, Iowa, and is a graduate of Iowa State University. Prior to joining Calyxt, Jim was the President and CEO for Bayer CropScience LP (North America). He also held executive positions at Valent (Sumitomo Chemical), Agtrol International and Agriliance LLC (a Land O’ Lakes and CHS joint venture). Jim currently serves as the Independent Non-Executive Chairman of Concentric Ag Technologies; Inc. He is the 2013 recipient of the Henry A. Wallace Award from Iowa State University for outstanding leadership and service to agriculture.
Chief Science Officer
Dan graduated summa cum laude from Harvard College in 1984 and received his Ph.D. in genetics from Harvard Medical School in 1990. He is a co-founder of Calyxt and one of the inventors of the TALEN® technology. In addition to his role at Calyxt, Voytas is a professor in the Department of Genetics, Cell Biology and Development at the University of Minnesota (UMN), which he joined in 2008, and is Director of the UMN’s Center for Precision Plant Genomics. In 1992, Voytas joined the faculty at Iowa State University. Prior to this, he conducted postdoctoral research at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dan is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the National Academy of Sciences.
Chief Financial Officer
Bill brings over brings over 10 years of corporate, finance and accounting leadership to Calyxt as an operating or corporate CFO. Prior to joining Calyxt, Bill was Vice President, Finance for the Brain Therapies business unit of Medtronic (NYSE: MDT). He has held executive positions at Young America Holdings, General Mills (NYSE:GIS), and KPMG LLP. Bill was recognized as a CFO of the Year by the Twin Cities Business Journal in 2016 and currently serves on the board of 1st Financial Bank USA and Second Harvest Heartland.
General Counsel and Corporate Secretary
Debra brings agriculture and food industry legal expertise to Calyxt. Previously, Debra was Associate General Counsel for Syngenta North America and acting general counsel for Syngenta Seeds, LLC. Through her seven years at Syngenta, Debra provided counsel for executive leadership teams and contributed to the closing of numerous global transactions; launching new products into new markets; and developing regulatory, compliance and corporate policies. Prior to her role at Syngenta, Debra practiced law at Stoel Rives LLP and Lindquist & Vennum PLLP.
Chief Technology Officer
Travis brings over 15 years of experience in the agricultural industry and technology innovation to Calyxt. Travis received his B.S. in Horticulture from Penn State University, M.S. in Plant Breeding and Plant Genetics from the University of Wisconsin, Ph.D. in the Plant Biology and Biotechnology Program at the Univesity of Delaware and DuPont/Pioneer and an M.B.A from the University of Chicago – Booth School of Business. Prior to joining Calyxt, Travis held science and innovation leadership roles at WISErg Corporation and Monsanto.
Chief Business Development and Supply Chain Officer
Manoj holds a MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth and Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the National Institute of Technology in India. Prior to Calyxt, Manoj held a variety of commercial, strategy, business development positions at Cargill. He was also responsible for leading Cargill’s equity investments in the industrial biotechnology space. Manoj currently serves on Industry Advisory Board of Larta Institute which assists the USDA, NIH and NSF with the commercialization assistance program.
Bobby Williams, Ph.D.
Director of Gene Editing
Dr. Williams has been on the forefront of advancements in plant sciences, and is an expert in the gene editing field. His accomplishments include developing new gene silencing technology and leading efforts to discover small RNAs to precisely engineer beneficial crop traits. In addition, Dr. Williams led gene discovery initiatives to improve crop traits to support sustainability, specifically drought resistance, improved nitrogen efficiency and yield enhancement.
With more than 15 years of expertise in the agriculture and seed industry, Dr. Williams most recently served as Senior Research Manager at Corteva Agriscience, where he led multiple trait discovery efforts and cross functional teams through field advancements. Prior to Corteva, Dr. Williams was a Helen Hay Whitney post-doctoral fellow at UC Berkeley studying Drosophila development under Gerald Rubin, Ph.D. He earned his Ph.D. in Biology at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, CA where he focused on plant developmental genetics with Elliot Meyerowitz, Ph.D.