The British Society of Plant Breeders (BSPB) has appointed Sam Brooke as chief executive, with effect from 1 July this year.
A skilled sales and marketing professional with more than 17 years’ commercial experience within the UK and European plant breeding and seeds industry, Sam joins BSPB from Syngenta UK Ltd, where she is currently Head of Seed and Seed Treatment Sales for UK and Ireland.
She succeeds Dr. Penny Maplestone, who left BSPB earlier this year to pursue other career interests. Sam is an experienced communicator and a well-known figure throughout the plant breeding and crop production sector. Before joining Syngenta in 2006, she held seed production and sales positions with Monsanto and RAGT. She has also served on the BSPB Board since October 2015 and is Vice-Chair of the AIC Seed Committee.
Announcing Ms Brooke’s appointment, BSPB chairman Andrew Newby said: “The Society is fortunate to have recruited such an energetic, passionate and well-connected advocate for the UK plant breeding industry. These are extremely challenging and uncertain times for British agriculture, but one thing is clear: maintaining a productive and resilient crop production sector will require continued investment in UK-based breeding programmes and access to genetic innovation, delivered to the market through high-performing varieties and quality seed. I am confident that, as chief executive, Sam will ensure that the Society and its members are best-placed to adapt and innovate in response to the challenges ahead.”