Crawford To Hold Ag-Tech Symposium

Oct 05, 2015

Jonesboro, AR – On October 14th, 2015, Representative Rick Crawford will host a discussion concerning the future of technology in commercial agriculture, and in particular the development of that technology in Arkansas and the 1st District.

Speaking about the event’s conception, Representative Crawford said,

When I first started the farm news network AgWatch, I employed new technology and communication techniques to build a business. After a few short years, the news service was broadcast on 39 stations in several states. In a similar way, when I meet with producers across our District, I see a big opportunity for allowing their expertise to create ideas, businesses, and jobs in the 1st District of Arkansas. Many producers are already innovating on their farms and using the most advanced farming techniques and equipment in the world. We need to start a conversation on how we can support and educate our budding entrepreneurs living in the Delta and the Ozarks. By connecting our own job creators to the information and capital they need, their ideas will help produce 21st century jobs for not only the 1st District, but for all of Arkansas.”

Representative Crawford will lead the symposium along with three other panelists. After an initial presentation, Representative Crawford will lead a discussion about the future of agriculture and technology.  Should time permit, the panelists will open up the floor for a discussion with the audience through a question and answer session. The guests, listed below, have years of experience in agricultural innovation and venture capital, as well as starting and building their own successful businesses.  

Co-Founders Clay Mitchell & Eric O’Brien, Fall Line Capital of San Mateo, CA
Clay Mitchell is Co-Founder and Managing Director of Fall Line Capital.  He is a fifth-generation Iowa farmer who has spent his entire career becoming one of the most innovative, progressive and respected farmers in the world. Clay led the revolution in precision agriculture from a variable-rate approach to an automation approach. In refining commercial grain farming at The Mitchell Farm, he has conducted highly introspective agronomic studies that have driven innovation in the use of auto-steering, next-generation control systems forfarming inputs, wireless farm networking, grain storage automation, no-tillfarming techniques and controlled-traffic farming systems.

Eric O’Brien is Co-Founder and Managing Director of Fall Line Capital, bringing over 18 years of professional investment, financial services and operating experience to the firm. Prior to forming Fall Line with Clay Mitchell in 2011, Erics pent 12 years at Lightspeed Venture Partners, a top tier Silicon Valley venture capital firm with over $3 billion of assets under management.  At Lightspeed, he was a Managing Director responsible for early and growth stage investments in technology and services companies in the U.S. and China.

Pete Nelson, Chairman & CEO, Ag Innovation Development Group of Memphis, TN

Pete Nelson is passionate about the future of agriculture with experience as a small farmer, policy advocate, startup cofounder, and consultant. He is focused on making the agriculture industry more diverse (people, crops, approaches) and creating new opportunities for farmers. Pete is part of a team creating an innovation ecosystem for agriculture. The ecosystem includes a venture development company which is commercializing licensed technology, a $25 Million early-stage venture fund in cooperation with USDA, and an accelerator program.

WHAT: Agriculture-Technology Symposium
WHEN: October 14th, 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 pm.
WHERE: Arkansas State University’s Convocation Center, Auditorium
217 Olympic Dr, Jonesboro, AR 72401

Press availability will be possible after the event. If interested, please contact James Arnold: Email – — Cell – 202-679-4346

The Arkansas Ag-Tech Symposium will take place in the ASU Convocation Center’s Auditorium, located beside the Central Box Office in the Lower Red Entrance; NOT the Upper Red Entrance that leads to the basketball arena.

 From Memphis
Take I-55 North, or I-40 West, across the Mississippi River to West Memphis. Proceed north on I-55 approximately 20 miles to exit 23 marked ‘Arkansas State University/Jonesboro’ via U.S. 63.
Proceed north on U.S. 63 approximately 45 miles to Jonesboro. Exit right at ‘Stadium Blvd./Caraway Road Exit’ (this is a double exit, take first ramp to Stadium Blvd). Turn right onto ‘Ark. Hwy. 1/U.S. 49/Stadium Blvd-North’. Proceed north on Stadium Blvd. — a total of 7 traffic lights to Aggie Road. A main entrance to the campus is on your left. Turn left on Aggie Road, then right on Olympic Drive. The Convocation Center is located at 217 Olympic Drive on your left.
From Little Rock
Take I-30 North across the Arkansas River to I-40 East, then exit U.S. 67 North to Jacksonville, Searcy, Bald Knob and Newport. Proceed north on U.S. 67 to ‘Exit 102’ and proceed approximately 7 miles on Hwy. 226 to Cash, Ark. At the stop sign in Cash, continue straight (East) toward Jonesboro another 7 miles to another stop sign. Turn right (South) on Hwy. 226 for another 1.5 miles to Hwy. 49. Turn left (North) on Hwy. 49 toward Jonesboro. As you enter the city, you will come to a traffic signal at Parker Road. The entrance to U.S. 63 South is the next right. Take U.S. 63 South and proceed to the Caraway Road/Stadium Blvd. Exit. Continue north on 49/Stadium Blvd. a total of 7 traffic lights to Aggie Road. A main entrance to the campus is on your left. Turn left on Aggie Road, then right on Olympic Drive. The Convocation Center is located at 217 Olympic Drive and is on your left.
From St Louis
Take I-55 South, to Hayti, Mo. exit 17B/Ark. Hwy. 412 West and proceed approximately 40 miles to Paragould, Ark. and then left on Hwy. 49 South in Paragould. Proceed 18.5 miles on 49 South to Jonesboro. The Convocation Center is located at 217 Olympic Drive, just past the football stadium. Turn right onto Alumni drive and then left onto Olympic Drive. The Convo is on your right.

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