Global Agriculture

World Food Prize Foundation Announces Two New Youth Members of the Council of Advisors

01 March 2024, US: The World Food Prize Foundation announced today that Francine Barchett and Nick Blumenthal have joined the Council of Advisors as youth members. The Council of Advisors provides guidance on the Foundation’s programs and ratifies the selection of the World Food Prize Laureate by the independent Selection Committee.

“The Council of Advisors has gained the insight of two invaluable youth leaders,” said Ambassador Terry Branstad, President, World Food Prize Foundation. “Ms. Barchett and Mr. Blumenthal have embodied the ideals of the World Food Prize Foundation to the fullest capacity, constantly working to be catalysts for agricultural innovation and growth.”

Ms. Barchett and Mr. Blumenthal are the third and fourth members to join the Council of Advisors as youth representatives. The Council of Advisors first welcomed youth members starting in 2021. Ms. Barchett and Mr. Blumenthal succeed the former youth representatives as a second cohort.

Ms. Barchett was selected to join the Council of Advisors in recognition of her research in social science, scientific communication, and commitment to education. As a PhD student at Cornell University, Ms. Barchett’s interdisciplinary work has led her across 25 countries and several CGIAR agricultural research institutions. Her connection to the World Food Prize Foundation began in 2015 when she participated in the World Food Prize Michigan Youth Institute. Since then, she has continued to assist with Youth Institute in an advisory capacity.

“The World Food Prize Foundation has made more of an impact on my life, career pathway and vision for the future than any other organization I have been a part of,” said Ms. Barchett. “To be able to give back in this capacity is not only very exciting for me but also quite humbling.”

Mr. Blumenthal was selected to join the Council of Advisors in recognition of his activism efforts in leveraging science and technology to combat global food insecurity. Having worked with numerous international organizations like the Committee on World Food Security and the United Nations, Mr. Blumenthal has developed an initiative to create change in food insecurity management. His World Food Prize Foundation journey includes his recent selection as a Borlaug-Ruan International Intern, stationed at IFPRI in Washington, D.C., where he researched an overview of the structural inequities of African agriculture.

“The World Food Prize Foundation has been instrumental to my personal and professional engagements within the global food and agricultural sector,” said Mr. Blumenthal. “This appointment will enable me to contribute to the Council’s meaningful efforts that shape the next generation of food security and nutrition efforts.”

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