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How the world lost a mining executive but gained something a lot tastier, a fresh perspective on produce.

What on earth was a graduate of both Purdue’s Krannert School of Management and the Columbia University Executive Development program doing in the bottom of a coal mine? The easy answer is you have to go inside an organization to find out what’s really going on. And if that means descending into a mine, so be it.

Julie’s never been afraid of hard work. Even though she holds a Masters of Special Studies from the University of Denver, summa cum laude, nothing takes the place of first hand experience.

But you can imagine how happy her mother was when she decided to trade mining for the produce industry. And not just because Julie’s family has been working in produce for generations.

Her grandmother grew up on a farm near Prague. Her grandfather had a corner grocery store in Chicago. Her uncle and mom turned that into a natural food store long before it became the trendy thing to do.

And Julie brought it full circle when she was asked to be the cornerstone speaker for the United Fresh Produce Leadership Program. She’s taught business and leadership skills to the best minds in produce every year since the program began.

Today Krivanek Consulting is the only firm focused exclusively on strategic thinking and planning for the produce industry. And has been for almost 25 years.