Executive Leadership Behind Omega3Beef
Don Van Pelt Smith, Ph.D., CEO and Chief Technology Officer
Founder Don Smith earned his B.A. from Harvard and a Ph.D. in Economics from Brown. Omega3Beef is the culmination of his storied career, in which Don has explored and innovated in a variety of emerging areas in food and energy production.
Throughout his career, Don has explored a variety of passions, but all have been related to making the world a better place. After teaching environmental economics at Southern Methodist University, he joined Sen. Gary Hart’s staff on energy, environment and budget in Washington, D.C., and developed a national energy plan largely based on natural gas, to eliminate oil imports.
Later, he entered the private-sector energy field, first becoming VP of Finance at GHK Gas Exploration, based in Oklahoma City, OK. Following a successful tenure there, he left to found Smith Cogeneration, a unique venture that developed, financed and operated the 120-megawatt PowerSmith Cogeneration Plant in Oklahoma City. The company also developed and operated a modern 185-megawatt barge-mounted power plant in the Dominican Republic in 1994, and initiated cogeneration projects in India, China, Bangladesh and Pakistan. In a parallel effort, Don established Quoddy Bay LNG on Maine’s Passamaquoddy Reservation to bring gas to New England, dismantle polluting power plants and supply gas-fueled vehicles.
Don’s interest and expertise also led him to explore new approaches to improving peoples’ lives in other ways. For example, he founded a company called Smith Algae Biofuels to grow algae with CO2 from power plant exhaust. In a seemingly unrelated effort, he developed a new bloodline of cattle at his DuckSmith Farms, achieving success at maximizing marbling while minimizing other fats.
Most recently, the many threads of inquiry that ran throughout Don’s career combined, when he conceived of a way to make beef a healthier food — by raising cattle on feed containing the same heart-healthy omega-3’s that fish consume when eating certain ocean plants. Omega3Beef was born — and thus the next step was taken in the evolution of the beef Industry.
Brian O’Meara, Chief Marketing Officer
Brian O’Meara is a global research and marketing specialist whose studies and consulting have provided strategic direction and tactical solutions in the areas of brand strategy, new product development, communications optimization and market structure understanding.
While at Wirthlin and Harris, Brian was a leader in bringing values-based understanding to some of the largest brands in the Consumer Packaged Goods industry (P&G brands, General Mills brands, and McDonald’s), domestically and internationally. At 3M, Brian developed a global new product assessment system, and provided management with a framework for developing innovative new products on a global scale. He also managed the marketing and business development of Post-it Notes sales in Europe, Latin America and Asia.
Brian’s skills build on more than 25 years in marketing research and marketing roles at Coca-Cola, Pillsbury and 3M. He has degrees in economics and mathematics from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and Southern Methodist University.
Dennis Young, Chief Operating Officer
Dennis Young has a broad and varied background in building, developing, growing and operating highly successful technology companies.
In 1999 he co-founded American Aerogel Corporation, a company developing revolutionary advanced materials and nanotechnology, and served as the company’s Chairman of the Board and CEO from 2004 through 2008. Prior to that, he founded and served as Principal of BroadBand West, a service provider in Aspen and western Colorado.
Previously in his career, Dennis founded and served for 17 years as Chairman and CEO of Young Systems Limited and Trak Systems, gaining a 65% U.S. market share at the time of the company’s 2001 sale. Even earlier, he was one of the founders of SoundScan, a firm that revolutionized reporting of music sales in the United States. He was co-founder and Vice President of S Ski, Inc., the company that revolutionized alpine skiing worldwide with the invention and introduction of the sidecut or ‘parabolic’ ski. In the mid 1970’s, he also served as consultant to the Governors of Oregon and California.