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Team

Matthew Wadiak

Founder, Chief Executive Officer

Matt is the founder and CEO of Cooks Venture. Prior to Cooks Venture, he founded and served as COO of Blue Apron, the trailblazing meal-kit company that reimagined the way food is produced, distributed, and prepared for home chefs. Matt developed and managed Blue Apron’s supply chain, led a team of over 5,000 manufacturing employees at six national centers, and built a network of over 250 farmers, ranchers, and agronomists. Matt’s goal is nothing short of building a food system for the future, changing industrial agriculture and creating a regenerative system to reverse climate change while providing consumers with food choices that are exceptional in quality and taste. He serves on the board of Goodwill International, one of the largest NGO's in the world, which works to educate and develop better employment around the country through a diversity of workforce development and social programs.

Cooks Venture Ankur Agrawal

Ankur Agrawal

Chief Financial Officer

Ankur leads Cooks Venture's sustainable growth, building new investor partnerships and establishing core processes. He has worked in a variety of finance roles including FP&A, innovation finance, investor relations and corporate development. Most recently, he served as the VP of Finance at SeatGeek. Ankur first met Matt at Blue Apron, where he worked for over three years. Prior to Blue Apron, Ankur worked at Pepsico in a variety of Finance roles. He began his career in investment banking with a focus on food and agriculture clients. As a result, Ankur became passionate about making good food accessible while building financially stable businesses. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Yale University and a Bachelor’s Degree from New York University.

Blake Evans

Executive Vice President

Blake is a third-generation poultry farmer and the founder of Crystal Lake Farms, one of the first companies to raise slow-growing chicken at scale, and an early adopter of the Global Animal Partnership 5-Step Program. Blake’s drive to build a better bird was inherited from his grandfather, Lloyd Peterson, whose Peterson Male was the gold standard rooster worldwide in the 1980s and 1990s.

Mark Fisher

Vice President of Operations

After eleven years in the Armed Services, Mark built a career in poultry operations with over two decades of hands-on experience at Wayne Farms, Foster Farms, and most recently Zacky and Sons Poultry. Mark’s commitment to process excellence is matched only by his commitment to developing leadership at all levels of the organization.

Richard Udale

Director of Genetics

Over a 50-year career, Richard has become a leader in poultry genetics, designing breeder programs to meet the needs of existing and emerging growth markets. His most well-known work can be seen in the Ross, Avian, Rainbow, and Peterson poultry lines. Richard has served once as Chairman of the Poultry Breeders Roundtable Symposium, and twice as President of Poultry Breeders of America.