Katie Davis was born and raised in Charlotte, North Carolina and started her scientific career studying biochemistry at North Carolina State University. After her undergraduate training, she returned to North Carolina State to get her MBA so she could learn more about the business of science. Today, she lives in Santa Barbara, California with her husband, and works as Apeel Sciences’ Senior Regulatory Manager. Get to know our very own Katie Davis by reading on!
What do you do for Apeel Sciences?
I manage our Regulatory Affairs program. Specifically, this means supporting our research and development teams as they develop new products and working to ensure we have the regulatory clearance to support our customers — and their customers — in the geographic areas that are important to them.
What were you doing before Apeel?
I've spent the past twelve years in the agriculture industry working to support the development of new technologies for novel seed and crop protection products. Prior to joining Apeel, I worked for Syngenta in Research Triangle Park, NC as a Study Director focusing on protein quantification and analysis of genetically engineered crops. This work led me to a transition to Regulatory Affairs where I held various roles in global regulatory operations, regulatory program management, and regulatory policy advocacy. I've also had the pleasure of participating in a number of industry associations including those of CropLife International, Biotechnology Innovation Organization, American Seed Trade Association, and, more recently, the International Food Additives Council — working alongside the industry to advance science and evidenced-based policies for new technologies.
What first interested you about working in the regulatory field?
There is still so much untapped potential in agriculture innovation and the only way these products will come to market is by ensuring they have the appropriate regulatory clearances to do so. I enjoy the challenge of translating the science for the public and policymakers and ensuring we are operating within the limits allowed by existing regulation as well as supporting governments as they work to modernize their regulations to align with the best available science. There is very little harmonization across the international regulatory landscape for our industry so it can be quite a challenging environment to operate in. Also, quite a rewarding one.
What is your favorite thing about working at Apeel Sciences?
Working with such smart and talented people who are looking to change the world. It's not enough to have an idea, you have to bring it to life for the impact to be made. I joined Apeel Sciences because I wanted to join a mission that aligned with my own passions and people that could bring big ideas to life. I can't think of a more exciting goal than working to make a positive change in our food system - changing the way food is produced and used, looking to a future where food waste is a thing of the past. There are big challenges out there, but the tools and technology exist to shift the trajectory. By working with and learning from nature, Apeel Sciences is part of the solution to a more sustainable food system.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
There are so many! I have been fortunate enough to have worked for and with some wonderful leaders and mentors. One piece of advice that sticks out is this: never stop learning. Always accept that there is more to know, more ways to improve, and an even better version of yourself around the corner. Always. The goal is to appreciate where you are and keep striving for that better version.