Chris is an engineer and entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience in agriculture, business, and academia. His expertise includes startup business operations, software product development, robotics, sustainability, hydrology, field data collection, automation, and practical farming experience. He is the founder and managing partner of Hatch Ag Group, LLC, a consulting company focused on finding answers to technical challenges and investing in great ideas in agriculture. Before the launch of Hatch Ag, Chris was Co-Founder and CEO of Agrible, Inc., where he built the company and team, developed multiple software and hardware products, and led the company in raising three rounds of venture capital. Since 2004, he has also been an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of Illinois working with students. Prior to 2014, Chris was the Vice President and Principal Engineer at Waterborne Environmental, Inc., where he built a market and team around consulting services where quality and accuracy were paramount.
- B.S. in Biological Systems Engineering, 1997, Virginia Tech
- M.S. in Agricultural Engineering, 1999, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
- Ph.D. in Agricultural Engineering, 2002, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
- Instructor: Technology Entrepreneurship Center, College of Engineering 30%
- Adjunct Assistant Professor of Agricultural and Biological Engineering . 0%
Other Professional Employment
- Corp. Vice President & Principal Engineer, 2011 to 2014, Waterborne Environmental, Inc., Champaign, IL
- Co-founder & Chief Executive Officer, 2012 to 2017 Agrible, Inc., Champaign, IL
- Managing Partner, 2017 to present, Hatch Ag Group, LLC, Champaign, IL
- Founder and Investor, 2018-present, Ag Air Imaging, LLC, St Joseph, IL
- Co-Founder and Strategist, 2018 to present, TellTail, Inc., Savoy, IL
- Venture Partner, 2018 to present, Anther Group LLC, Champaign, IL
- Chief Executive Officer, 2018 to present, AirScout, Inc., Champaign, IL
- Aerial Agronomy and the use of manned-aircraft sensors to change agriculture.
Selected Articles in Journals
- 5. Lerch RN, Harbourt CM, Broz RR, Thevary TJ (2013). atrazine incorporation and soil erosion: balancing competing water quality concerns for claypan soils. Transactions of the ASABE Vol. 65(6): 1305-1316.
- 4. Trask JR, Harbourt CM, Miller P, Cox M, Jones R Hendley P, Lam C (2014). Washoff of cypermethrin residues from slabs of external building material surfaces using simulated rainfall. Environ Toxicol Chem 33: 302-307.
- 3. Davidson PC, Jones RL, Harbourt CM, Hendley P, Goodwin GE, Sliz BA (2014). Major transport mechanisms of pyrethroids in residential settings and effects of mitigation measures. Environ Toxicol and Chem 33: 52-60.
- 2. Hand LH, Nichols C, Kuet SF, Oliver RG, Harbourt CM, El-Naggar EM (2015). Quantifying soil surface photolysis under conditions simulating water movement in the field: A new laboratory test design. Environ Toxicol Chem 34: 2236-2243.
- 1. Jones RL, Trask JR, Hendley P, Cox MJ, Chepega JC, Harbourt CM, Davidson PC (2016). Effects of formulation on transport of pyrethroids in residential settings. Environ Toxicol Chem 35: 340-347.
Service on University Committees
- External Advisory Committee, College of ACES, 2016-2019, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL.
Recent Courses Taught
- ABE 498 CH1 - Innovative Entr & Leadership
- CPSC 199 - Emerging AgTech Trends
- CPSC 599 - Thesis Research
- TE 360 - Lect in Engrg Entrepreneurship
- TE 398 PSC - Innovation and Eng Design
- TE 460 - Lect in Engrg Entrepreneurship