SANTA BARBARA, Calif., April 20, 2021 — Kate Farms®, the market leader bringing plant-based nutrition into healthcare, announced today a number of promotions among executive leadership along with four new board members as part of the company’s accelerated growth and innovation.
Tom Beecher, previously Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of Corporate Development at Kate Farms, has been appointed to President effective January 2021. He will oversee business operations of Kate Farms, including product development, customer care, human resources, financial management and strategy. Beecher brings more than 20 years of leadership experience to the role, having formerly led the transformation of businesses and brands as Chief Executive Officer at Cartera Commerce and Imagitas.
Catherine Hayden has been named Executive Vice President and General Manager of the newly formed Medical Business Unit at Kate Farms. In the newly created position for the company, she will be responsible for integrating sales and marketing to support the next stage of growth across the medical nutrition space. Hayden brings 15 years of sales, marketing and clinical experience to the position. She joined Kate Farms in 2018 after nearly a decade at Mead Johnson Nutrition where she rose from a neonatal academic specialist to the Associate Director of US Medical Marketing. She started her career in medical nutrition as a registered dietitian, working in the pediatric and NICU departments of Alberta Health Services in Canada. Both Hayden and Beecher will report to Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Brett Matthews.
“At Kate Farms, we are strengthened by the heart and expertise of our remarkable team,” said Brett Matthews, Chairman and CEO. “These moves highlight our continued focus on providing clinically proven plant-based products to healthcare providers and scaling our business operations to support our growth. Tom and Catherine are both remarkable leaders in their own respects and bring diverse backgrounds and experiences that will help us continue to flourish and provide plant-based nutrition to those in need.” Additional executive team members are Cynthia Ambers, MD, EVP and Chief Medical Officer, Casey Bauer, EVP Product and Operations, Julia Slee, Vice President Human Resources and Jamison Barr, General Counsel.
Kate Farms also made a series of board appointments to steer the company through a period of growth and expansion. Joining the Board of Directors are Allison Berardo, Kimberly Alexy, Tom Bedecarré and Rich Cockshott. These appointments increase Kate Farms Board of Directors to 10 members including current directors Peter Nicholas, Jeffrey Jacobs, Celeste Clark, PhD RD, Richard Laver, Robert Zollars who has been appointed the role of lead director and Brett Matthews, Chairman.
Allison Berardo currently serves as a Vice President in Goldman Sachs’ growth equity platform, GS Growth. As part of the Merchant Banking Division, she helps lead consumer investments and is currently managing ventures in Billie, a female-first subscription service, Burst Oral Care, a direct-to-consumer oral care company, and Moonbug, an entertainment company providing educational programming for children. Most recently, Goldman Sachs led a significant $60 million Series B for Kate Farms with participation from Main Street Advisors.
Kimberly Alexy joins the Kate Farms Board of Directors as a seasoned finance professional and corporate board member, serving on nearly a dozen pre-IPO and public company technology boards. She currently serves on the board of directors for companies such as Western Digital (WDC), a leading provider of data storage devised and solutions, FireEye, Inc. (FEYE), a leading cybersecurity provider, and Five9 (FIVN), a cloud-based contact center software provider. She has also served on the board of directors as National Committee Governor and Special Committee chair for SMART Modular Technologies. Alexy was a sell-side equity research analyst for nearly a decade specializing in technology stocks. For ten years, she has taught finance at the graduate school level at San Diego State University and has helped public and pre-IPO companies with their board needs.
Tom Bedecarré was the Co-Founder and CEO of AKQA, a leading digital advertising agency, and led the global expansion of the firm from North America to Europe, Asia and Latin America. During his tenure, he completed four acquisitions and raised more than $150 million from leading private equity firm General Atlantic. He was named a Chairman in 2012 after selling his business to WPP Group for nearly $600 million. He brings more than 20 years of diverse board experience, including the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) Advertising Agency Advisory Board, Foster Farms Bowl Director, among others. Bedecarré is also an advisor and investor and served as the President of WPP Ventures, where he explored Silicon Valley investment opportunities for WPP, the world’s largest communications services group. Currently, he is an investor and advisor for Silicon Valley startups. Bedecarré co-teaches at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and is also on the teaching team for Steve Blank’s Lean LaunchPad and Hacking For Defense courses in the Stanford Technology Ventures Program.
Rich Cockshott comes to Kate Farms with more than two decades of experience helping deliver high-value business transformation in customer experience and digital commerce. He serves as Vice President of Sales, Western Region at Optimizely (formerly Episerver), a leading provider of digital experience platform solutions. Currently, he leads a team of individual sellers who are passionate about seeing clients through to value and advocacy. Cockshott also held several positions, such as Regional Vice President and Sales Director at the Customer Engagement Company™, Verint.
Kate Farms continues to drive change and clinically proven outcomes in the medical nutrition space through its higher standard, plant-based formulas. Kate Farms products are organic, non-GMO, plant-based products not only taste great but are scientifically formulated, clinically proven, and available in most of the leading hospitals across the country to improve people’s health, particularly those with chronic medical conditions. For more information, visit www.katefarms.com.
About Kate Farms
Kate Farms was founded when a little girl named Kate was failing to thrive, putting her very life at risk. She could not tolerate the tube feeding formulas available, so her parents had the transformative idea to develop a better formula using the highest quality, organic, plant-based ingredients without the synthetic ingredients and common allergens found in traditional formulas. Now the #1 plant-based formula on the market, Kate Farms serves thousands of patients suffering from severe, chronic diseases to less serious medical issues, and is available through prescription and over-the-counter.
Kate Farms produces plant-based, organic, clinically proven nutritional formulas without major allergens, including soy, dairy and corn. Eligible for insurance coverage by Medicare, Medicaid and more than 2,000 private insurance plans and a growing number of WIC programs, Kate Farms formulas and nutrition shakes are made of easily digested organic pea protein, prebiotic soluble fiber from organic agave inulin and a clinically effective phytonutrient blend that provides antioxidants. Kate Farms flows easily through a feeding tube and is also used orally because of its great taste. Kate Farms formulas are on formulary with many leading children’s and adult hospital systems across the country and are available to more than 90% of U.S. hospitals via Group Purchasing Organization (GPO) contracts.
For more information, visit www.katefarms.com or follow the company on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.