He routinely gives kudos to the leaders who have helped him in his career as an agronomy and agribusiness professional.
“I have had some tremendous mentors at critical times in my careers that have invested in me and helped me to be successful,” he says.
Just as important has been Greg’s role as a mentor – whether that be as a father, a community leader, or a missions leader.
“I have been blessed to have participated in multiple short-term mission trips around the world, but my three trips to South Africa have humbled me the most,” says Greg.
Through an organization called Horizon, Greg has worked with children who are orphaned mostly from losing parents to the AIDS epidemic.
“Every child deserves to be loved, and hugged, and given hope for a future. It is truly humbling to go and see villages that you contribute to and meet children that my wife and I personally sponsor and see the impact that is having in their lives.”
Greg brings that passion and care to his day job as an Account Manager for Verdesian Life Sciences, where he serves Ohio and Michigan ag retailers.
“This industry is about people, and the core of that is the local farmer, the absolute salt-of-the-earth,” he says. “Helping them be successful is the most fulfilling part of working on this side of the industry.”
Greg left college to work in real estate, but soon learned that that industry wasn’t for him. He returned to school and earned a degree in Agricultural Economics from Ohio State.
“From there it was a lot of chance meetings and being in the right place at the right time that landed me in working in agronomy and advancing my career.”
He began his ag career as an intern for Winfield under the regional agronomist for Michigan and Ohio running spray demo’s and plant nutrition trials. He then spent four years in agronomy sales and management for Eaton Farm Bureau Coop in Charlotte, Michigan, followed by five years with Winfield Untied in multiple roles covering Michigan and Ohio before joining Verdesian.
“Having a role in plant nutrition built around nutrient use efficiency is the area I believe I can make the greatest impact to the local farmer,” he says. “The successful farmer of now and of the future isn’t the one who can brag about winning a yield contest or farming the most acres, but the one who has created the largest ROI and gained the most efficiency out of every input across their entire farm. The farmer who continues to win moving forward is the one who balances out production, environmental impacts, soil health, plant health, and efficiency of all inputs.”
Greg and his family – wife, Alysa; children Adalyn (10); Haven (7); Judson (5); Truman (3); and Lochlan (20 months) – stay extremely busy in and around their Michigan family farm, which was purchased by his great grandfather in 1908. In their spare time, the Sanfords enjoy the family cabin in the upper peninsula of Michigan on Lake Michigamme where they boat, hike trails and waterfalls, swim, sauna, explore, eat at all of our favorite local places, fish, and spend lots of time on beautiful, quite, secluded beaches on Lake Superior. Greg is also very involved in his church and local ministries.
“I feel so blessed to be a part of this team here at Verdesian. With proven products and a robust pipeline that will greatly benefit farmers and retailers for years to come, I have confidence when stepping onto a farm or into a retailer that I can positively impact their crop, field, business, and bottom line,” he says. “No matter the size of an operation of the production systems they use we have solutions that fit their needs and will benefit what they do. I truly believe we are the head of the class in plant nutrition and nutrient use efficiency”.
To learn more about our Verdesian specialists, please visit https://vlsci.com/find-a-specialist .