Meet The Team
Don runs all of the operations of the company and works out of the Madera facility. As a longtime veteran of Ultra Gro, he is the glue that makes everything stick. Don grew up in Los Banos, and as a member of the storied Parriera/Cozzi Clans, has plenty of local knowledge. Don graduated from Fresno State and continues to serve his alma mater as past-president of the board of the Ag One Foundation.
Craig is the Sales Manager at Ultra Gro. Based in Madera, Craig is most commonly found in his pickup. He has been at Ultra Gro since 2008 and has a strong Ag background from his 20+ years as a commodity trader working throughout the Valley. Craig’s family hails from Firebaugh where his Father and Grandfather have farmed since the 1930’s. An avid skier and active family man (six kids…yikes!) Craig lives in Fresno and sits on the Board of the Central Valley Community Foundation.
Harold is the “Answer Man” at Ultra Gro. He started his fertilizer career in 1972 in Paso Robles and has worked throughout Northern and Central California ever since. With a strong knowledge base in the strawberry world (not to mention everything else), you might find Harold in the far reaches of Northern California or the fields of Zomora, Mexico. Beyond traveling for business, he and his wife Estelle have a long list of destinations checked off on their bucket list.
Steve lives in Fresno and has a lot of history in Kern County. He has a large following in the table grape industry and spends a great amount of time in Delano. Some 35 years ago, growing up in Caruthers, Steve started out in the fertilizer business working for his father, Dick Best. An “all or nothing” kind of guy, Steve has been enthusiastically waving the Ultra Gro flag since 2001. He is a passionate Fresno State Bulldog supporter and an avid motorsports fan: cars, boats, quads, as he puts it “it doesn’t matter… the faster the better!”
Melanie has been an integral member of the Ultra Gro family for many years. As our office manager, she is the official gatekeeper and truly knows the in’s and out’s of all things Ultra Gro. Melanie wears many hats and is responsible for all of the billing and bookkeeping functions. When she isn’t chasing her grandchildren around, she might be found at a Country-Western Concert.
Robert comes to Ultra Gro with an exceptional track record in agronomy, production, and food safety. He has diverse experience in California crops, from blueberries to nuts, grapes, stone fruit, strawberries, and citrus. He has served on the Kings County Agricultural Roundtable, Kings County Dairy Review Committee, the Tulare County Agricultural Advisory Committee, and is a long-time board member of his church in Tulare. Robert is a graduate of University of California, Davis and California State University, Fresno. He now resides in Tulare with his wife, Kathy.
Eric is well known for being an extremely hard worker and tougher than nails. A graduate from Fresno State, Eric has built a strong customer base ranging from the Eastside to the Westside, mostly in Fresno County. In May 2018, Eric was in a major motorcycle accident and sustained extensive injuries. His positive attitude, outstanding work ethic and incredible support from his wife Anne, have enabled and hastened his recovery. Eric is a true inspiration to his many friends and all of us at Ultra Gro. He has a goal of being back in the field (and the disc golf circuit) by 2019. Go Emac!
Dustin joined the Ultra Gro team in late 2007. He has developed a strong customer base in citrus, almonds, walnuts and grapes. Known for his hard work and can-do attitude, Dustin is extremely likable. This family man is a member of Visalia Rotary and on the Board of Directors of Tulare County Boys and Girls Club.
Rich has been on the Ultra Gro team since the summer of 2012. His science background from UCSB and strong work ethic have helped him get ahead of the agronomy learning curve. Rich is busy: He writes a monthly pistachio column for an Ag magazine, does a weekly radio spot providing timely farm advice, and has several “Farm to Fork” videos on his resume. Rich is married, farms pistachios with his wife, LeeAnn, and lives in Madera.
Frank started with Ultra Gro in 2010. With involvement in family farming operations over the years, he has developed a strong knowledge in grapes, almonds, pistachios and blueberries. Always well prepared, Frank leverages this production experience with his growers and uses his eye for detail to deliver expert advice to his customers. Frank lives in Visalia, has a growing family and a rising golf handicap.
Derek is a native of Chowchilla. This Cal Poly Grad has experience ranging from the cotton ginning business to fertilizer sales. On the roster at Ultra Gro since early 2011, Derek has developed a strong base of business in the North Valley and, with an eye on the future, moved to Oakdale in 2017. He is our main man from Merced to Lodi, with some additional customers in Sac Valley.
Bill joined Ultra Gro in the summer of 2015 after a long career in the dairy service industry. The crossover from Animal Science to Plant Science is working well as Bill has proven to be a quick study in Agronomy. This Kingsburg local has kids at Immanuel and can be found at the Gun Club on occasion.
Albert has been with the company since 1994 and represents the true Ultra Gro success story: He started out sweeping floors, moved up to the delivery/service team, and ultimately into sales. Albert has a diverse business mix. He works with almonds and grapes in the Valley, strawberries, raspberries and veggies in Watsonville/Salinas, and everything-in-between in Mexico. Most of his time is spent in Watsonville walking fields and servicing his customers. Albert has a large family and is particularly proud of his many grandchildren.
Dennis joined the Ultra Gro team in Fall of 2011 and hit the ground running. Much of his success can be attributed to his longtime relationships from former lives in the Farm Management and Nursery industries. Dennis is a well-respected relationship guy and problem solver for many of his customers. Dennis is also a family man that tries to make a difference, often found volunteering on weekends by tending the barbecue at different nonprofit fundraising events.
Terry joined Ultra Gro in 2008, teaming with his father-in-law, Bob March, in Santa Maria and Oxnard. With Bob’s retirement in 2013, Terry has become a truly accomplished crop nutritionist. His training and experience have proven him well in the service-intensive strawberry world. Terry works hard and keeps his growers ahead of the pack.
Agronomy is in the blood with Garrett, having grown up in a Visalia farming family. He currently lives in Lemoore with his wife Laceyanne who is also in the industry. His hobby of raising exotic chili peppers (watch out!) confirms his passion. Garrett covers Kings County for Ultra Gro.
Jesse joined the Ultra Gro family in August of 2012. His prior experience with inside sales and customer service has served him well in developing relationships among the farming community. He has spent a lot of time learning about tree crops and strawberries. His mentors, Harold Peters and Albert Rascon, are both singing the praises of Jesse’s strong work ethic. This family man from Madera is married and has three school-aged daughters.
Han has been with Ultra Gro for almost 20 years and is semi-retired. He covers the Sacramento Valley and Napa/Sonoma. This service-oriented representative has extremely loyal customers in almonds and wine grapes stretching from Chico to Lake County. Han’s enthusiasm for his customers is only matched by his passion in the kitchen.
Drake graduated from Fresno State with an Ag degree in 2017. He started at Ultra Gro as an intern and has hit the ground running since his rookie year. He has experience with grapes, almonds and row crops.
Chris has been with Ultra Gro since the beginning of 2017. A graduate of Fresno State, he has an Ag Technology background and has been in the fertilizer world for several years. Chris has family ties in the Paso Robles wine industry and lives in Fresno. He covers Fresno County and represents UG in the Paso Robles marketplace, as well.
Chase is a Valley native, was a standout baseball player at Bullard High School in Fresno and went on to play ball at San Diego State. He obtained a degree from San Diego State and later on, a second degree from Fresno State. His science background has served him well as he has fast-tracked his knowledge base in Agronomy. Chase is engaged to be married in Spring 2019.
DJ comes to Ultra Gro with a lot of local knowledge. He has worked in and out of Ag for many years and is starting off his Ultra Gro career with a great “can-do” attitude and high energy. Having completed his training with Steve Best, DJ has a knowledge base in grapes, almonds and pistachios.
Born and raised in Fresno, Zach comes to Ultra Gro with deep valley roots and a seasoned sales background. He focuses on building long-lasting relationships with customers, always keeping their best interests at heart. When this young gun isn’t out in the field, you might find him playing tennis or spending time with family.
Ultra Gro sees Mexico as an incredible opportunity with vast potential for our products. We are working hard to establish our presence there. Through the tireless efforts and contagious enthusiasm of veteran crop nutrition specialists, Alberto Rascon and Harold Peters, we have been selling and shipping fertilizer to Mexico for the past nine years.
In 2010, Ultra Gro made a lot of progress in Mexico, aligning ourselves with local fertility company Alvita Agro. Alvita Agro shares Ultra Gro’s “agronomy-first” approach to fertility. We are honored to be affiliated with Alvita Agro and its manager, Sr Liborio Alvizo. Liborio has an extensive background in plant nutrition from his past employment at Bayer Agri-Science. We have high expectations and are strongly committed to supporting Liborio and his group in all of their endeavors.
Liborio is deeply educated in plant nutrition, and friendly to boot. With his background working for a large multinational plant science company, Liborio leads the Alvita Agro team. He uses Ultra Gro products in several crops, including Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries, Avocados, Wheat, Corn, Sorghum and Citrus. Liborio and his team cover a lot of ground. They are serving accounts in: Zamora, Jacona, Tanganciquaro, Los Reyes, La Piedad, Penjamillo, Atotonilco and others.
Alberto has been traveling to Mexico for the last 10 years, steadily establishing a foothold in the Strawberry industry. All of those visits have given Alberto the ability to see vast potential for Ultra Gro products in this marketplace.
Harold is the “Answer Man” at Ultra Gro. He started his fertilizer career in 1972 in Paso Robles and has worked throughout Northern and Central California ever since. With a strong knowledge base in the strawberry world (not to mention everything else), you might find Harold in the far reaches of Northern California or the fields of Zomora, Mexico. Beyond traveling for business, he and his wife, Estelle, have a long list of destinations checked off on their bucket list.