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Brian Jacobson

Title: Associate Director of Strategic Operations
Phone: (217) 300-5404

Brian Jacobson joined IBRL in February 2012 and is responsible for management of the IBRL, FSHN-PPP, and associated programs. He oversees the five technical departments (Fermentation, Downstream Processing, Food Processing, Laboratory, and Operations & Safety) and staff for these areas. In addition, his team is responsible for scheduling, facility & equipment maintenance, budgeting, and interaction with the HR and other business functions of the University.

Brian is active in the food and bioprocessing industry, serving as chair of the BioMADE Fermentation Scale-Up Subcommittee, a judge on the XPRIZE: Feed the Next Billion prize challenge, and member of numerous related associations and organizations. He is also active in supporting programs in the Department of Agricultural & Biological Engineering, and the Department of Food Science & Human Nutrition while also advising startup and SMB companies along with student capstone projects.

Brian graduated with two degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has a BS in Agricultural Engineering (Technical Systems Management) with a minor in Business Administration, and a Masters in Food Science & Human Nutrition. He is also a graduate from the Professional Staff Leadership Academy and holds several business management certifications. Prior to joining IBRL, Brian worked at a manufacturing firm overseeing large-scale automated equipment installations, ensuring new projects were completed on schedule while meeting applicable quality and regulatory standards. He has managed large teams (50+) and has extensive project management and business development experience.