LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 21, 2015) – Challenging the audience to “never say never,” Alltech founder and president Dr. Pearse Lyons concluded the Alltech REBELation, an international conference exploring innovation, inspiration and world-changing ideas.
He urged the more than 3,000 attendees from 68 nations to look beyond the obvious. “Create your business one relationship at a time,” he said. “Find the extra mile and go there. Learn how you, too, can build a $2 billion company if you empower your team, one person at a time.”
University of Kentucky men’s head basketball coach, John Calipari, received the Alltech 2015 Humanitarian Award. The Humanitarian Award is given annually to a person of strong character who uses his accomplishments to positively influence and inspire others. Calipari has leveraged his power of influence through widespread charitable endeavors.
On the opening day of the event, former United States Secretary of State Colin Powell received the 2015 Alltech Medal of Excellence, Alltech’s highest distinction, which is awarded annually to someone of great achievement and character. Previous honorees include scientists such as Dr. Eugenia Wang for her pioneering work in microRNA and agricultural leaders such as Norman Borlaug, the “father of the Green Revolution.”
Two university students received awards in the 10th annual Alltech Young Scientist (AYS) program, the largest global contest of its kind that rewards scientific genius and experimental application in agri-science. Students were challenged to submit research studies that demonstrate a keen awareness of science and its applications for improving the future of the world, specifically through agriculture. Xiaoqiu (Churchill) Wang, who attends Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas, was the graduate winner and received $10,000. Rafal Bialek, a student at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Poland, won the undergraduate division, receiving $5,000. Nearly 9,000 students from 62 countries had registered for the AYS this year.
The Alltech REBELation offered 11 symposia in three tracks (agriculture, business, and food and beverage) and featured 121 renowned speakers.
In concluding the event, Dr. Lyons said, “My challenge to you is to see the world as it is. Are you impacting the world or is the world impacting you? It is all about risk, action and reward.” At the same time, he said, “You’ve got to love the journey.”
Quoting the late Sen. Edward Kennedy – “The work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die” – Lyons said, “That’s what this is about. What’s your dream? Where are you going? How can we help you achieve it?”
Lyons told attendees to write down their dream and their risk on a piece of paper. “Bring it back next year, and let’s celebrate together,” he said.
Next year’s conference, THE ALLTECH, will be held May 22-25, 2016.