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Texas Global Food Security Summit to Feature Government, Business, Academic, Non-Profit Leaders, and Celebrity Advocate ‘Big’ Kenny Alphin

Newsroom / January 17, 2020

The Eleanor Crook Foundation, American Farm Bureau Federation and UT Austin’s LBJ School of Public Affairs are co-hosting the inaugural Texas Global Food Security Summit today on the sidelines of AFBF’s Annual Convention. The summit will provide a platform to discuss and to promote efforts to advance global food security and nutrition.

William H. Moore, Executive Director, The Eleanor Crook Foundation stated: “Though it rarely makes headlines, malnutrition is responsible for 45% of childhood deaths and remains the number one killer of kids in the world. However, as The Texas Global Food Security Summit will showcase, U.S. farmers and U.S. universities are leading the fight against malnutrition, driving advancements that are saving and improving millions of lives each year.

Highlights of the summit include keynote remarks and panel presentations from experts versed in topics including U.S. agriculture and farming leadership in the fight against global hunger, the importance of driving research and innovation, the national security dimension of global food insecurity and the critical role of civil society organizations. Distinguished speakers will include members of the Texas congressional delegation, Farm Bureau leadership and leaders from the Texas academic, foundation and faith communities.

“Today, one in nine people in the world suffer from hunger. Shockingly, the situation is even worse in our home state of Texas,” said Dr. Kate Weaver, Associate Dean at the LBJ School of Public Affairs. “According to leading independent sources, nearly one in seven people experience food insecurity and nearly 1 in 4 children struggles with hunger. The Texas Global Food Security Summit will bring powerful, expert voices across sectors to work together in identifying solutions to these pressing issues of our time.”

According to “Big” Kenny Alphin of Big & Rich, “I've witnessed hunger in communities here and countries around the globe. Hunger for too many is a sad daily reality that none of us would wish for anyone. I believe we have the ability and the collective calling to each do what we can to help. I'm excited to be a part of the conversation and hear from experts in food security and agriculture on how we may all work together to end hunger globally by 2030. That's certainly a goal I can get behind and a glorious possibility worthy of us all raising our voices and caring.”

Texas is a world leader in agricultural production and research and is the country’s fifth-largest agricultural exporting state, shipping $6.9 billion in domestic agricultural exports abroad in 2018.

Texas farm and ranch products contribute about $100 billion in economic activity for the state, and agriculture employs one out of every seven working Texans. In addition, Texas universities are leading cutting-edge research and innovation in agriculture production and global food security.

“It’s important that our response to hunger go beyond our own fields and communities, to sharing technology and supporting initiatives focused on global agricultural development,” said Dale Moore, AFBF’s executive vice president. “By working together, we can increase global food security. A better-fed world is a more secure world.”

Summit speakers, listed below, include celebrity activists, members of the Texas Congressional Delegation, state government officials, and leaders from the university, agriculture, business and civil society communities.

  • Big Kenny Alphin, Country music singer and activist, Big & Rich
  • Dr. Rob Bertram, Chief Scientist at USAID's Bureau for Food Security
  • Chris Boleman, Chief Mission Officer at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo
  • Dr. Jim Butler, Rancher and Former Deputy Director General of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization
  • Dr. Jenny Dyer, Founder of the 2030 Collaborative
  • Jeremy Everett, Founder and Executive Director of the Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty
  • Rep. Will Hurd (R-Texas)
  • Chytanya Kompala, Nutrition Research Program Officer at the Eleanor Crook Foundation
  • Dr. Jean Lonie, Director of Farmer Engagement at the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance
  • Sid Miller, Texas Agriculture Commissioner
  • Mortada Mohamed, President, World Affairs Council of Austin
  • William Moore, Executive Director of the Eleanor Crook Foundation
  • Dale Moore, Executive Vice President of the American Farm Bureau Federation
  • Dr. Elsa Murano, Director of the Borlaug Institute
  • Steve Olson, Farmer Ambassador of the Farm Journal Foundation
  • Dr. Catherine Weaver, Associate Dean at the LBJ School of Public Affairs

Follow the conversation about advancing global food security and nutrition on social media:






The American Farm Bureau Federation

The American Farm Bureau Federation is the Voice of Agriculture.We are farm and ranch families working together to build a sustainable future of safe and abundant food, fiber and renewable fuel for our nation and the world.

The Lyndon B. Johnson School, one of the nation’s top public affairs schools, makes a difference, not only within the walls of academia, but also in the public and social dialogue of the world. The LBJ School is committed to improving the quality of public service in the United States and abroad at all levels of governance and civic engagement.

The Eleanor Crook Foundation (ECF), founded in 1997, is a growing US-based philanthropy focused on research and advocacy to end global malnutrition. In 2017, ECF committed to investing $100 million to fight global malnutrition by 2030. The Foundation works with a broad spectrum of partners, including universities, NGOs, multilaterals, activists, religious groups, the private sector and governments globally.

Cole Staudt
Communications Manager
(202) 406-3714
Mike Tomko
Director, Communications
(202) 406-3642

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