2016 Case Writers & Presenters


Aaron Johnson
Associate Professor

Agribusiness Management

University of Idaho

Dr. Aaron Johnson is an associate professor in agribusiness management at the University of Idaho where he teaches entrepreneurial skills, sales and strategic management. In addition, he conducts research in new venture creation, business management, strategic management and strategic marketing. Prior to joining the University of Idaho, Dr. Johnson was the Food Business Strategy Specialist at Oregon State University’s Food Innovation Center in downtown Portland, where he worked with hundreds of food business startups. Dr. Johnson received his Ph.D. in agribusiness management from Purdue University, where he was also involved in firm level strategic planning through the Center for Agricultural Business.

Contact Information: Phone: 208-301-2367


Carmi Lyon
Managing Member

Harting Family Farm, LLC

Carmi Lyon is an agricultural economist with a BS from Washington State University and an MS from Purdue University. She has worked in the U.S. and abroad for Agricultural Cooperative Development International and USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service, and for Oregon State University’s Department of Agriculture and Resource Economics at the food Innovation Center in Portland, Oregon. Her first authored business cases were written with Purdue’s Center for Agribusiness for an executive training in Budapest, Hungary. Carmi grew up on a farm in the Columbia Basin in eastern Washington. She is raising three kids with her husband Jesse, is a volunteer leader at the local food pantry, and is the managing member of Harting Family Farm, LLC.

Contact Information: Phone: 503-963-3900


James Sterns
Associate Professor

Oregon State University

James Sterns joined the Faculty of the Department of Applied Economics at Oregon State University in 2013, in order to contribute to the Department’s teaching and research efforts in the general areas of agribusiness management and performance of agri-food systems. His prior work experiences include 12 years as a faculty member of the Food and Resource Economics Department at the University of Florida, where he was a core member of the agribusiness teaching and research programs. He also has worked internationally, including extended work assignments in Cameroon, France, Ecuador and Haiti. These international experiences, along with his PhD dissertation research on the export decisions of small to medium-sized agribusiness firms, have supported an enduring professional interest in global agriculture and food markets.

He is married and the father of three school-aged children. Though born and raised to adulthood in rural Kansas, he has family ties to the Pacific Northwest. His grandparents owned and operated an apple and pear orchard in the Corvallis area, and his mother is an OSU alumna. This is the first time that Dr. Sterns is attending the NW Agribusiness Executive Seminar.

Contact Information: Phone: 541-737-1406