Farm Foundation Awards

Farm Foundation Transformational Leadership Award

Honoring an individual who has demonstrated innovative and transformational leadership in food and agriculture.

The Farm Foundation Transformational Leadership Award 2023 Recipient

John Foraker, Co-Founder and CEO, Once Upon a Farm

Joh Foraker Headshot 2023

John Foraker is co-Founder and CEO of leading children’s nutrition company Once Upon A Farm. While the father of four was raised in a conventional farming family, he went onto study agricultural economics at UC Davis, attend business school at UC Berkeley, and become fixated on consumer goods and the natural, organic food movement. After helping launch an infused oil company that invested in Annie’s, which was at the time a natural mac and cheese company, John became CEO of the company and shifted its mission toward bringing organic goods from niche to mainstream in the U.S. After the company went public, Annie’s was acquired by General Mills, where John consulted for the company’s organic food companies.

Eager to invest in another food company, he discovered Once Upon a Farm, which was alone in its mission to distribute fresh, organic baby food. He signed on as co-founder in 2017, continuing to drive purpose around healthy and clean food access for babies. In the last five years, Once Upon a Farm has been groundbreaking in the industry, expanding the portfolio to exceed expectations in delivering nutritional superiority in meals and snacks for babies to big kids across the store and with their own robust OTC subscription service. The $100M company leads in the creation of fresh snacking sets at key retailers, has recently launched a freshly frozen line of plant-rich meals, and continues to increase expectations in the baby aisle with their own coolers aiding in their mission of driving systemic improvements in childhood nutrition.

Nominated by: Aaron Rudberg, COO and Sr. MD, S2G Ventures

Launched in 2023 to celebrate the 90th anniversary of Farm Foundation, the Farm Foundation Transformational Leadership Award will be awarded to an individual who has demonstrated a lifetime of innovative and transformational leadership in food and agriculture.

Transformational Leadership Award Criteria
  • Exhibits traits and characteristics of a true leader through their visionary approach to leading an organization or industry
  • Identified as a mentor and changemaker within their established career
  • Was responsible for a transformational idea, product, or concept that had significant impact in the food and agriculture sector
  • Exemplifies high standards of professionalism in all their endeavors
  • Embodies the mission and vision of Farm Foundation through their work and contributions
Nomination Materials

Please provide the following for the Transformational Leadership nomination packet:

  • Contributions Summary: A bullet point summary of the significant contributions this individual has made to food and agriculture. You can share an overall list or the CV/Resume of this individual.
  • Supporting Letter: Please also provide at least one letter of nomination from a supporter who can share insight on the impact this nominee has made.

Submit materials to the nominations portal by no later than October 20, 2023.

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