Matt Bechdol is the CEO of GRYFN, a collaborative Purdue University startup focused on turn-key multi-modal, research-grade drone sensing solutions to facilitate digital twins approaching the plant scale. GRYFN empowers plant breeders with high-quality, high-precision, multi-modal sensing platforms for high-throughput phenomics research and also provides value in many adjacent markets, such as natural resources and environmental applications.
For 25 years, Bechdol has specialized in spatial data analysis, remote sensing, data-driven agriculture, and natural resources. He began his career as a consultant at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, focusing on hyperspectral and spatial applications in agriculture. He then spent a decade at ESRI, the world-leading geographic information system software firm. In 2011 he started GeoSilos, his consulting firm focused on place-based solutions for agriculture, and in 2013 co-led one of the early economic studies with Informa Economics on the implications and opportunities of “Big Data” in the food and agriculture sector.
Matt received his Bachelor’s in Public Affairs from Indiana University, a Master’s in Geographic and Cartographic Science from George Mason University, a Master’s in Agricultural Economics from Purdue University, and an MBA from Indiana University. In 2005, Matt and his wife Beth returned home to Auburn, Indiana, after ten years in the Washington, D.C., area to live on Beth’s family corn, soybean, and wheat farm, an 1864 Indiana homestead. Their daughter Grace, a senior at New York University – Abu Dhabi, is the seventh generation to grow up on the farm. Currently, Matt splits his time between Rome, Italy, and Indiana as Beth supports the mission of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.