Sustainable Farm Partners

Our Team

Our management team has a combined seven decades of organic, agricultural, business, entrepreneurial and investing experience. In addition to possessing unique skills, members on our team are organic practitioners with experience in all aspects of sustainable farming.

Harn

Harn Soper (CEO and founder of SFP) is past president and current board member of Soper Farms Inc. Soper Farms is a 900-acre family century farm in northwest Iowa. Under his guidance Soper Farms has transitioned their farms from conventional GM-based chemical farming to organic specializing in row crops. This perspective gives Harn a unique side-by-side understanding of multiple farming systems, their advantages and disadvantages.

Seeking further farm efficiencies, Harn was instrumental in conducting on-farm energy research including grants from the University of Northern Iowa Farm Energy Working Group. Teaming with Rich Schuler, MS Physics, and lecturer at the Iowa State University, they developed a prototype small-scale energy extracting system from an integrated aerobic and anaerobic compost system.

Harn graduated from Colorado College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in music. As an entrepreneur in Silicon Valley, his career covered music production and composing working with world-renowned musicians such as George Winston and Will Ackerman. As an early adopter in digital recording he expanded his focus towards digital audio/video technology and Internet asset security with Pinnacle Systems, Avid Technology, Harris Broadcast and numerous broadcasters worldwide including US broadcast and cable companies NBC, ABC, CNN and international media companies including TVB Hong Kong, the Australia Broadcast Corporation and the BBC and ITN in the United Kingdom.

Upon leaving the technology field Harn returned to the fields of Iowa focusing on his family farms and starting Sustainable Farm Partners. He now serves on the board of the Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) and, through Green America, works with industry groups developing solutions to increase the availability of non-GMO and organic grains across the supply chain.

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Don Wiviott (Partner) Don Wiviott has had over thirty years of experience as an innovator in financings, management, and sustainable companies. His track record includes successful start-ups, turning around industrial companies and, since 1995, designing and building Energy-Efficient and award–winning Live/Work communities in New Mexico. Don has completed in excess of $250mm in real estate financings as either a principal or as an intermediary.

Wiviott was born in Madrid, Spain, and has lived in Southeast Asia, Europe and the United States. He holds a B.A. from Dartmouth College in Government and Environment Studies and an MBA from Harvard with an emphasis in finance and entrepreneurial management. Don has successfully lobbied for Solar Energy statutes in the New Mexico Legislature and was a candidate for New Mexico’s Third Congressional District in 2008.

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Craig Brownlee (farm management) is the principal in Brownlee Farm Management in Emmetsburg, Iowa with over 20,000 acres under his management. As a member of SFP’s management team, Craig He has over 35 years of farming and farm management experience in both industrial and organic agriculture. Brownlee also manages his family farms of 2,500 acres, and as a community leader, serves on numerous boards including Iowa Trust & Savings Bank and POET (producers of corn and cellulosic ethanol). Mr. Brownlee and Mr. Soper have worked together in farming for over 30 years.

Barry Fehr (farm operations) operates a successful organic farms with his extended family in West Bend, Iowa and Weld County, Colorado with over 3,000 acres in organic production and over 10 years of organic farming experience. Mr. Fehr is also general manager for Greenleaf, LLC, a farm investment partnership. Mr. Fehr and, Mr. Soper have worked together in organic farming for seven years. Brownlee and Mr. Soper continue to work together on Soper Farms projects.

Board of Advisors

David_2David C. Johnson (soil biologist) has his PhD in Molecular Biology at New Mexico State University and consults on Molecular and Microbiology specializing in soil system dynamics and the relationship between soil and plant physiology. He speaks internationally and has co-authored numerous scientific papers on subjects including composting and biohydrogen production.

Currently Johnson is conducting metagenomics analysis on soil microbial community structures for development of agricultural management systems that improve soil fertility, mitigate atmospheric CO2 and reduce pollution resulting from conventional agriculture practices. He is featured in Kristin Ohlson’s book “The Soil Will Save Us”.

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Jeff Moyer brings decades of organic farming expertise to Sustainable Farm Partners as the Executive Director at the Rodale Institute where he has conducted years of side-by-side in-field testing of organic and conventional farming practices. Both at Rodale and on his own farms, Jeff is an expert in organic crop production systems including weed management, cover crops, crop rotations, farm equipment and farm facilities design.

Bringing his knowledge and a farmer’s perspective to issues in organic farming, Jeff served as past chair of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) which assists the USDA Secretary of Agriculture in developing the standards and materials used by organic farmers today. In this position he also advised on the implementation of protocols used in the National Organic Program (NOP). He is a member of the Leonardo Academy’s committee on sustainability, former board member of the Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) and a founding board member of Pennsylvania Certified Organic.

As a thought leader and farmer in organic farming, Jeff continues to help countless farmers make the transition from conventional, chemical-based farming to sustainable organic farming.

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Alan M. Webber is an award-winning, nationally-recognized editor, author, and columnist. In 1995, he launched Fast Company magazine, a fresh, dynamic entry in the business magazine category.

Headquartered in Boston, MA, the magazine became the fastest growing, most successful business magazine in history. Fast Company won 2 national magazine awards—one for general excellence, one for design—and Alan was named Adweek’s Editor of the Year in 1999, along with co-founding editor William Taylor.  In 2000 Fast Company magazine was sold to Gruner + Jahr for the second largest amount of any magazine in U.S. history.

Prior to founding Fast Company Alan was the managing editor and editorial director of the Harvard Business Review. In 2010 Alan was a Democratic primary candidate in the race for New Mexico Governor.