CHAMPAIGN – Nominations are now being accepted for the Glen Brandt Prize for Ag Entrepreneurism, a new prize established to honor the memory of Glen “GB” Brandt, a legendary figure in the field of Illinois agriculture.
The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has partnered with The BRANDT Foundation to create the award, which will provide a $10,000 prize to a winner who exemplifies an entrepreneurial spirit and advances innovation through their business practices.
“The business community lost a real entrepreneur when GB passed away,” said Rick Brandt, President and CEO of BRANDT and GB’s son. “GB was a visionary; he took calculated business risks; he wasn’t afraid to try something new. He brought new ideas and new technologies to our customers, oftentimes when others were actively saying it couldn’t be done.”
The son of a farmer from Sangamon County, GB, along with his sister Evelyn, started the company that would become the global agribusiness known as BRANDT. He provided the vision and energy to imagine, build and manage what today has 800 employees and sales in 46 countries. He died on June 7, 2020 at age 94.
“We are establishing this prize to honor his legacy and provide the capital to help other budding entrepreneurs see their ideas come to life,” said Rick Brandt.
The first winner of the Glen Brandt Prize for Ag Entrepreneurism will be recognized at the AgTech Innovation Summit, an annual event produced by the University of Illinois Research Park, on March 10, 2021.
The $10,000 cash prize will recognize an outstanding individual for their role in advancing innovation and entrepreneurship in the ag sector. Nominations are now being solicited online. The deadline for submission is March 3, 2021.
Those eligible for the award include Illinois farmers, growers and producers or those engaged with Illinois farmers, growers and producers.
Examples of possible innovations include (but are not limited to): working to increase productivity/efficiency of farmers; new applications of technology; unique business ventures; and creating new agricultural opportunities, such as new crops or new food production systems.
About The BRANDT Foundation
The BRANDT Foundation was established in 2012 as a philanthropic extension of BRANDT, Inc. The Brandt family has always stood with their communities and as their company grew, so did the opportunities to give back. The BRANDT Foundation offers donations, grants and support to the charities, organizations and communities that reside in the same area of the company; geographically and industry related.
About the AgTech Innovation Summit
The AgTech Innovation Summit is an interactive conference where participants to learn and share knowledge about the current state of agtech and get a looking into the future through dynamic panels, inspiring keynote presentations, and networking opportunities. It is produced by the University of Illinois Research Park in partnership with the College of ACES and the Office of Corporate Relations. One of the premier AgTech hubs in the nation, Champaign-Urbana is uniquely positioned to bring together entrepreneurs, investors, academics, and industry for learning, networking and advancing this sector.