View speaker bios for farming and forestry session presenters.
Lav Knot

Morning Keynote Speaker

Dr. Lav Khot

Drone-Data-Decisions & Washington Agriculture
Site-specific crop management involves use of technological resources to understand soil and crop variability and effectively apply crop inputs throughout the production season. Landscape that enables effective monitoring and management of crops is changing rapidly with emergence of smart technologies including unmanned aerial systems (UAS) aka "Drones." This talk will focus on state-of-the art in the field of small and mid-sized UAS, optical sensors, drone data analytics and pertinent applications of integrated UAS technologies as enabler for precision as well as decision agriculture in Washington State.

Dr. Lav Khot is an assistant professor in the Department of Biological Systems Engineering, Washington State University (WSU). He is core affiliate member of Center for Precision and Automated Agricultural System (CPAAS). He works in the Agricultural Automation Engineering research emphasis area. His research and extension program focuses on "Sensing and automation technologies for site specific and precision management of production agriculture." He has published 50+ peer-reviewed papers in this area and 100+ combined national and international conference talks, extension/outreach workshops and short courses. He is active member of American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) serving in several capacities and Chair of "Precision Horticulture Engineering Working Group" of International Society for Horticultural Science.

Mike Pearson

Lunch-Time Keynote Speaker

Mike Pearson

The MegaTrends in Agriculture

Get ready to laugh and learn with Mike Pearson as he takes you on an entertaining journey – a look ahead at the outlook for the farm markets and global trends impacting these markets. With his address "The Four MegaTrends in Agriculture," Mike takes an in-depth look at the way agriculture will be changing in the next 20 years. The past century has been one of non-stop progress in efficiency, technology and yield and Mike pulls together his wide-ranging reports on the industry to analyze the four biggest trends driving agriculture forward: analytics, robotics, biotechnology and structure.

Farmer, broadcaster, and former banker, Mike Pearson keeps viewers informed on agricultural issues as co-host of the daily podcast Ag News Daily with over 6,000 listeners each month. He is the former host of Iowa Public Television's "Market to Market" weekly television show. Mike was raised in south central Iowa, attended Simpson College, where he majored in History, and continued to run the family farm south of Winterset, IA. After graduation he moved to Grinnell, Iowa where he is a part-time farmer and also has experience as a banker with emphasis on Agriculture and Residential Lending.