Emily Johannes

Principal, ResourceMAX Director

Washington, DC

503 2nd Street NE Washington, DC 20002

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Emily arms food and agricultural businesses with valuable tools, plans, and analysis to increase their credibility in the marketplace. She leads K·Coe Isom’s teams to build sustainability programs for beef, dairy, pork, turkey, and grain/feed companies, enabling them to capture and report sustainability information to valued customers and the public. In addition to food companies, she advises progressive producers on using sustainability performance metrics to their advantage, responding to customer demands, opening up sales opportunities, and negotiating with key business partners. The results in working with Emily include:

  • Easily capturing and tracking metrics that demonstrate a producer’s ability to meet sustainability goals outlined by major commodity purchasers, thereby, increasing new market opportunities.
  • Increasing profitability through implementing sound sustainability programs, through cost efficiencies, increased sales/distribution, and new brand/market growth opportunities.
  • Organizing effective procedures and processes for implementing sustainability, making company reporting and analysis easier and more efficient.
  • Facilitating various stakeholders to develop and deliver innovative solutions for sustainable ag production.
  • Improving community relations by documenting and communicating livestock management practices, ultimately demonstrating the farmer’s efforts to reduce odor issues and promote animal health.

Emily has over 15 years of program/project management experience in environmental impact assessment and sustainability in the private and public sectors. She served as the Senior Environmental Technical Advisor for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, overseeing the national environmental and sustainability programs for the agency. She is an aquatic ecologist by training and early in her career she worked for a non-profit to partner with agriculture on water quality issues in Pennsylvania.

Her grandfathers, one a hobbyist nature photographer and the other a microbiologist, were influential in her passion for ecology—how natural systems work and how human activities can affect plants and animals. Early in her career, Emily worked with farmers finding practical ways to improve water quality in Pennsylvania watersheds. Since then, Emily has worked with many industries, including construction, disaster response, defense, and national security, on environmental and sustainability assessments. She brings a broad, real-world perspective to address the complex issues that food and ag businesses face.


  • M.S., ecology and evolution, University of Pittsburgh
  • B.A., zoology, Miami University

Professional Associations

  • Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef
  • US Roundtable for Sustainable Beef
  • National Association of Environmental Professionals

Speaking Engagements

  • The Sustainability Consortium Summit
  • Executive Women in Agriculture
  • Fresno State Agribusiness Conference
  • MAEA Annual Conference
  • American Coalition for Ethanol Annual Conference


  • Loves to travel, having visited countries in 5 of the 7 continents

Mentions and articles by Emily

Flooding in California

5 Things to Mitigate Farm Risk During Natural Disaster

Jeanne Bernick | September 15, 2018

As the nation watches the ongoing punch from Hurricane Florence (now a tropical storm) as it has been dumping rain for days and causing catastrophic storm surges, all eyes have been on an area just inland from the North Carolina coast, where there are more […]

How Cattle Genetics & Herd Management Decisions Impact Sustainability Outcomes

Emily Johannes | September 11, 2018

U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef Pilot Project Demonstrates Economic and Environmental Benefits for Producers Can genetic performance and herd management decisions in the backgrounder and feedyard sectors not only drive economic outcomes, but also improve environmental outcomes? This was the […]

Food and Ag Businesses Can Tap into Emerging Sustainability Incentives

Emily Johannes | August 29, 2018

Funding opportunities are available to companies that meet “green” requirements Environmental sustainability programs now have monetary value with banks. Consider CMS Energy, one of the nation’s largest combination electric and natural gas utilities. In June 2018, the Michigan-based energy provider […]