About Us

Our MISSION is to become a connector for the industry, bringing together growers with growers, growers with manufacturers, growers with suppliers and growers with consumers.

Urban Ag News is an educator providing content through a variety of different media. Through its educational efforts, Urban Ag News seeks to provide its users with a basic understanding of the industry and to keep them informed of the latest technologies.

ChrisHiggins-UANfounder

Chris Higgins, The Founder

Chiggins-Tourdefresh-main-imageUrbanAgNews.com is the latest venture for Chris. With the advice and guidance of a very experienced team of horticultural and creative professionals UrbanAgNews.com is focused on providing innovative and educational content to a wide audience from professional greenhouse vegetable growers to those interested in starting non-traditional businesses in urban agriculture, city and vertical farms.
Mr. Higgins is also General Manager and co-Owner of Hort Americas, LLC a wholesale supply company focused on all aspects of the horticultural industries as well as BigBadflower.com. BigBadFlower.com is a boutique online retailer focused on inspiring consumers with the potential of plants as part of their lives. With over 15 years of experience, Chris is dedicated to the horticulture and niche agriculture industries and is inspired by the current opportunities for continued innovation in the field of controlled environment agriculture.
Chris is also dedicated to creating change through a variety of non-profit and community minded projects. Learn more about Chris’ latest fund-raising adventure, Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools. He rode the Tour de Fresh, a 4 day 275 mile bicycle ride that focused on building awareness and generating funds for salad bars in local schools.

Farmer Tyler, The Grower Expert

urban-ag-news-expert-grower-farmer-tylerTyler has a range of urban agricultural experience from homesteading to commercial hydroponics. While completing his B.S. in Horticultural Sciences at the University of Florida, he traveled overseas to study Organic Agriculture in Spain and Protected Agriculture (greenhouse production) in China. After graduation, he worked as a grower for 3 Boys Farm Inc., the first certified organic recirculating hydroponic farm in the United States. In 2013, Tyler moved to Denver, Colorado where he worked as the hydroponic farm manager at The GrowHaus. He managed a profitable urban farm while creating a successful hydroponic internship program with a 90% job placement rate for graduates. The hydroponic farm at The GrowHaus is currently managed by alumni of the farm internship program and continues to provide lettuce for Wholefoods, Safeway, and several local markets. While at The GrowHaus, Tyler started creating educational videos and blog posts about farm tech which he continues to post on his website FarmerTyler.com. He has had multiple appearances on P. Allen Smith’s Garden Home which airs on national PBS. Currently, Tyler manages the Dallas Grown hydroponic greenhouse in Dallas, Texas and works as Special Projects Manager for Hort Americas. Farmer Tyler continues to produce video content which can be seen at Urban Ag News YouTube and Farmer Tyler YouTube!

David Kuack, The Writer

Dave-KuackDavid is a technical communication specialist with over 25 years of real-world experience. For over 20 years he was an editor with commercial horticulture publications focusing on greenhouse production. He has a MS in Horticulture from Ohio State University.
David is currently a freelance technical writer working with a variety of commercial horticulture companies. He has been on the Board of Directors of OFA (now AmericanHort) and a committee member of the National Greenhouse Manufacturers Association. David was the inaugural winner of the Horticultural Initiative Award presented by the Southeast Greenhouse Conference.

Jim Pantaleo, The Business Developer

VZM.IMG_20151019_120729After a 20-year career in technology, half of this time spent with tech behemoth Hewlett Packard, in mid-2014 Jim took a year to fully immerse himself into the world of controlled environment agriculture. With a primary focus on indoor vertical farming (operations using 100% LED lighting), Jim was able to connect and directly engage with many of the industry’s most credible operators and “difference makers.” Most recently, he was the Director of Business Development at Urban Produce, a large-scale indoor vertical farm in southern California. He is a member of the California Indoor Agriculture Collective and the Association for Vertical Farming. Among other duties, he is also a contributing writer for Urban Ag News profiling industry leaders through one-on-one interviews. Jim obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations from San Francisco State University.

Alicia Morcillo, The Graphic Artist

alicia-morcillo-smAlicia joined the team with 8 years of graphic design experience, but new to the world of horticulture and agriculture. After spending 5 years as First Baptist Church Euless’ lead graphic designer (which has over 5,000 members), she joined the Urban Ag News team officially in 2013. She is Urban Ag News’ and Hort Americas‘ graphic and web designer and has also been able to assist on projects with BigBadFlower.com, SunFireNurseries.com, as well as DFW-based non-profit organizations. She is married to Diego for over 8 years and they have two beautiful toddlers. Their favorite family past time is going to the beach on the weekends.

Cameron Muilenburg, Asa Wright Video Productions

CameronSelf-taught videographer and graphic designer, who has done video work for ESPN, Hoffman Bikes and Mutiny Bikes.
He was Director of Video Communications at First Baptist Church in Euless, Texas, which has over 4,000 members, for over 2 years. Cameron has done design work for multiple contracting companies in the Gulf Coast area as well as Hort Americas and Hidden Clothing, a clothing company he owns and designs for. He also has ridden BMX for over 10 years and it is one of his greatest interests outside of videography, photography and design. He also dabbles in music, playing drums, guitar and is learning to play piano.

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