Directors

Management

Staff

Stephen C. Ruffini

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He began with Village Farms on January 5, 2009. Previously, Mr. Ruffini served as the Chief Operating and Chief Financial Officer of Performing Brands, a small cap US publicly traded company. From 2001 until October 2005, Mr. Ruffini served as the Chief Financial Officer of Hit Entertainment, plc a publicly traded (FTSE-250) UK-company. Hit Entertainment is the preeminent young children’s entertainment company owning such brands as Barney the Dinosaur, Bob the Builder and Thomas the Tank Engine. From 1993-2001, Mr. Ruffini served as the Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of Lyrick Corporation and RCL Enterprises, Inc. privately-held companies based in Allen, TX owning both entertainment properties, as well as commercial printing and publishing operations. From 1984 to 1993, Mr. Ruffini was a Senior Tax Manager at Arthur Andersen & Co. Mr. Ruffini has an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin and a BBA from Southern Methodist University. Mr. Ruffini is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

Directors

Management

Staff

Michael A. DeGiglio

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Michael A. DeGiglio, is the founder of Village Farms International (NASDAQ: VFF; TSX: VFF) has served as President & Chief Executive Officer since the company’s 1987 inception in New Jersey. Village Farms is one of the first, and is the longest operating, hydroponic greenhouse business in North America. Mike’s leadership of Village Farms extends to its wholly owned subsidiaries, the legacy produce brand Village Farms Greenhouse Grown and Pure Sunfarms, Canada’s premier cannabis supplier, as Village Fields Hemp, a joint venture for outdoor Hemp cultivation in the USA. Mike has also led the Company’s strategic investments internationally: DutchCanGrow, which is pursuing first legal recreational cannabis market in Europe, and Altum International, one of Asia-Pacific’s leading Cannabinoid platforms.

Under his continuing leadership, Village Farms grew to become the largest greenhouse grower in North America and today remains one of the oldest operating produce Greenhouses in the USA, with an owned footprint of 240 acres (“under glass”), and all facilities are in excellent growing climates located in the US and Canada. Of this total, Pure Sunfarms currently totals 50 acres of cannabis production in Canada and Village Farms Greenhouse Grown produce totals 190 acres of fresh produce under in USA and Canada.  With relationships that have been built over a span of 25 years, the company also markets for exclusive greenhouse partners in Mexico, Canada, and the US (an additional 305 acres) sold under the Village Farms Greenhouse Grown brand.

Since entering the industry, Mike has been a visionary.  Village Farms three-decades of success is directly founded on Mike’s foresight in how a then nascent business model would largely depend on being vertically integrated, and at the same time, could attain critical mass. From the beginning, Mike has focused on continuing to drive down cost of production to ensure the durability of the business.  Armed with this intention, in 1996, he navigated Village Farms toward the construction of the largest greenhouse footprint at the time (40 acres) in Fort Davis, Texas. Prior to scaling to this first of its kind footprint in the world, Village Farms had developed and operated six smaller greenhouses in New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, all of them pioneering Co-Generation Technology. Under his direction, Village Farms was also the first company to build an urban agricultural project, large-scale indoor farm, by completing an 18-acre greenhouse in downtown Buffalo, NY in 1998. Also, to his credit in 2006, he led the company to acquire the largest greenhouse operation in Canada, Hot House Growers.

Mike is a pioneer in Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA), driving the implementation of high technology hydroponics throughout the Company’s facilities. In 2012, he led his team’s design and development of the company’s proprietary GATES technology, used in a semi-closed 30-acre Permian Basin greenhouse in the extreme climate region of west Texas (cost of US$42 million). Village Farms facility proved that even in a climate with extreme temperature fluctuations (-9 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit), it could not only grow but achieve a year-round harvest of high-quality vine-ripened fresh product with record yields, sold locally to Texas retailers, boasting with the ability to go from farm to plate in just one to two days.

Prior to founding Village Farms, in 1984 Mike started and served as CEO of Agro Dynamics, Inc. (ADI), which was the first to introduce numerous new greenhouse technologies to the budding North American market. One of these, the innovative hydroponic growing medium, Grodan Rockwool, was revolutionary for its time, and today remains a leader among substrate technologies. Upon the acquisition of ADI by NASDAQ-listed agricultural biotechnology company EcoScience in 1992, Mike continued as CEO until it was subsequently acquired privately by Village Farms in 2001.

Continuing in his role as chief visionary for Village Farms, Mike sees technological innovation as key to solving how to grow enough food to meet the ever-increasing demands of an expanding world population.  Mike has championed the company’s commitment to CEA because he believes it to be healthier for the environment in its proven ability to conserve natural resources. At the same time, he remains dedicated to the vitality of a vertically integrated business model. Alternative renewable energy sources are also a contributing part of his success story; currently Village Farms Clean Energy in Canada converts methane from a nearby landfill to a sustainable heat and electric source for its greenhouses there, while creating cleaner air for the greater Vancouver area. And in Texas, a Village Farms greenhouse gets a significant portion of its electricity from solar and wind power. With multiple initiatives underway Mike’s focus is in leading the company in projects that will benefit the agricultural sector and the world at large in natural resource conservation.

Mike has built his business success on the foundation of his years in service. He has served his country on active duty in the US Navy as a naval officer and carrier qualified jet aviator from July 1976 through January 1983, and the Naval Air Reserves from 1983 to 2001, retiring at the rank of Captain within the United States Naval Reserve. Throughout his Naval career, he held numerous department head positions; completed a tour as Commanding Officer of a jet aviation squadron; performed multiple tours overseas; and completed a variety of senior advanced management courses; all while logging over 5,000 hours of jet flight time.

Michael received a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Science and Aviation Management from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University located in Daytona Beach, Florida.