Transforming Agriculture

with Powerful Ideas

 

Our Story

Pivot Bio was born out of an ambition to replace synthetic nitrogen fertilizer with a more sustainable and safer tool for farmers. Co-founders Karsten Temme and Alvin Tamsir began their work as lab partners during graduate school and focused on creating a dependable and safer way to fertilize cereal crops. Supported by early grants from the Gates Foundation in 2011 and driven by a relentless commitment to help make farming more productive and sustainable, Karsten and Alvin built a scalable proprietary tech platform that enables microbes to reliably produce nitrogen for cereal crops - a discovery that has been chased by scientists for decades, and never available commercially until now. Pivot Bio microbes take nitrogen from the air and make it available for plants, replacing the need for synthetic nitrogen.

After years of laboratory, greenhouse, and on-farm trials, Pivot Bio released its first commercial product for corn, Pivot Bio PROVEN®, to U.S. farmers in 2019. The product sold out within six weeks, demonstrating a strong demand from farmers for a new technology to improve their operations while minimizing their environmental footprint. Demand continues to grow, and the company expanded its product portfolio in 2020 with Pivot Bio RETURN® for wheat and introduced sorghum in 2021.

Karsten and Alvin
 
 

Our Leadership

We are dedicated to creating exciting innovations and opportunities for Pivot Bio and the farmers who trust our products. And, for everyone who believes that powerful ideas can change the world.

Karsten Temme, Ph.D.

Karsten Temme, Ph.D.
CEO and Co-Founder

Karsten Temme, Ph.D.

CEO and Co-Founder

For years, Karsten has been fascinated with the limitless potential of the unseen microbes that inhabit our world. Seeking to produce “more than scientific journal articles” and driven by the desire to create meaningful change in the world, Karsten partnered with his friend and colleague, Alvin Tamsir, to create Pivot Bio.

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Alvin Tamsir, Ph.D.

Alvin Tamsir, Ph.D.
CSO and Co-Founder

Alvin Tamsir, Ph.D.

CSO and Co-Founder

As co-founder and leader of Pivot Bio’s scientific team, Alvin Tamsir, Ph.D., grew Pivot Bio’s research team from two scientists to a group of 50+. Based in Berkeley, CA, Alvin continues to lead the organization’s interdisciplinary research teams.

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Richard Broglie, Ph.D.

Richard Broglie, Ph.D.
Chief Technology Officer

Richard Broglie, Ph.D.

Chief Technology Officer

Richard leads Pivot Bio’s R&D program, creating a vibrant and innovative culture by championing strong, interdisciplinary connections between scientific specialties.

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Natalie Hubbard, Ph.D.

Natalie Hubbard, Ph.D.
Vice President - Regulatory & Government Affairs

Natalie Hubbard, Ph.D.

Vice President - Regulatory & Government Affairs

Natalie leads Pivot Bio’s regulatory program, managing products through the process of international commercialization and ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements and stewardship practices.

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Doug Jeffries

Doug Jeffries
Chief Financial Officer

Doug Jeffries

Chief Financial Officer

Doug Jeffries leads the business operations teams to ensure the company has the talent, information and capital to efficiently become the premier provider of sustainable nitrogen products to the world’s farmers.

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Allen-Kuo-21-293

Allen Kuo
Director - Legal

Allen Kuo 

Director - Legal

Allen negotiates Pivot Bio’s business and research agreements and establishes strong, vision-driven relationships. Additionally, Allen manages outside counsel, intellectual property portfolio, and advises on company strategy, policy and risk mitigation.

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Mark Reisinger

Mark Reisinger
Vice President - Commercial Operations

Mark Reisinger

Vice President - Commercial Operations

Mark is responsible for the commercial strategy for Pivot Bio’s cutting-edge technology and novel fertilizer solutions. A farmer himself, Mark brings a deep knowledge of grower needs as well as extensive experience in commercial strategy, brand development, marketing and advocacy.

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Ernie Sanders

Ernie Sanders
Vice President - Product Development

Ernie Sanders

Vice President - Product Development

Ernie directs the design, development and launch strategy of new Pivot Bio products. With a deep understanding of the range of farming practices, Ernie oversees field trials and analyzes performance data to understand how products interact with the environment and their efficacy in different conditions.

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Brenda Stone

Brenda Stone
Organization and Talent Development Director

Brenda Stone

Organization and Talent Development Director

Brenda leads Pivot Bio’s company culture by directing talent acquisition, talent development and people ops for a growing team. Drawn to mission-driven people and organizations, she designs HR processes with Pivot Bio’s unique goals and opportunities in mind.

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Tracy Willits

Tracy Willits
Vice President - Communications

Tracy Willits

Vice President - Communications

Tracy brings a wide breadth of expertise to Pivot Bio, where she oversees all corporate communications efforts for the company and develops high-impact public relations programs that drive business results and stakeholder engagement.

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Partners Who Share Our Vision

Powerful breakthroughs come from strong partnerships. At Pivot Bio, our Board of Directors bring a wealth of experience and insight — as well as a shared vision for how Pivot Bio’s technology can improve agriculture and our world. In addition, our team collaborates and innovates alongside some of the world’s leading academic minds through active engagement with our Scientific Advisory Board.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

CHRIS ABBOTT
Continental Grain Company

MATT OCKO
DCVC (Data Collective)

RYAN RAKESTRAW
Temasek

COOPER RINZLER, Ph.D.
Breakthrough Energy

LISA SAFARIAN

ALVIN TAMSIR, Ph.D.
Pivot Bio

KARSTEN TEMME, Ph.D.
Pivot Bio

SCIENTIFIC ADVISORY BOARD

JEAN-MICHEL ANE, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin Professor of Bacteriology and Agronomy

GLORIA CORUZZI, Ph.D.
Carroll & Milton Petrie Professor
New York University

RAY DIXON, Ph.D.
John Innes Centre Professor of Molecular Microbiology

RICHARD FERRIERI, Ph.D.
University of Missouri Research Professor

DAVID KANTER, Ph.D.
Asst. Professor of Environmental Studies

New York University
Vice Chair of the International Nitrogen Initiative

PHIL POOLE, Ph.D.
Professor of Plant Microbiology
Oxford

LUIS RUBIO, Ph.D.
Universidad Politécnica de Madrid Professor of Plant Biotech and Genomics

GARY STACEY, Ph.D.
Curators’ Distinguished Professor
University of Missouri

ERIC TRIPLETT, Ph.D.
Professor and Chair – Microbiology & Cell Science
University of Florida

CHRIS VAN KESSEL, Ph.D.
Emeritus Professor, Department of Plant Sciences

University of California – Davis

CHRIS VOIGT, Ph.D.
Co-Founder and Professor of Biological Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology