The team of professionals at Michigan Potash & Salt Company has 280 years of combined experience in the industry.
FOUNDER AND CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (P.G., P.E)
Mr. Pagano is a potash geologist and certified professional engineer with extensive experience in investment decision analysis as it concerns natural resource exploration and development. He has comprehensive knowledge of potash exploration and solution extraction production methods. Prior to founding Michigan Potash & Salt Company, LLC, Mr. Pagano was the co‐founder of Dakota Salts, LLC, a potash exploration endeavor based in North Dakota; whereby, Pagano established the State’s first public potash lease, auction, core test, tax basis, and legislative requirements for potash exploration and production.
Mr. Pagano’s relevant experience includes over 17 years of natural resource development with positions of significant responsibility at Texaco, Chevron, Kerr‐ McGee, and Anadarko Petroleum. He has been responsible for natural resource development in Michigan, Alaska, Texas, New Mexico, Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Oklahoma.
B.S. Geological Sciences from the University of Notre Dame (Indian Fellow, Merit Scholar). M.S. Petroleum Engineering Colorado School of Mines.
CHIEF DEVELOPMENT OFFICER
Cory Christofferson is the Chief Development Officer of Michigan Potash & Salt Company.
Cory joined MPSC in 2020, making a pivot from a successful career in the oil and gas industry. Cory is entrepreneurial minded with significant expertise in energy transactions. His diverse background across private equity as well as public and private energy companies includes production operations, reservoir engineering, deal valuation and execution, business strategy, fundraising, and board representation.
Cory recently served as Managing Director and Investment Committee Member for Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors in Houston, Texas. In that role he was a Board member for several private energy companies with upstream and midstream oil and gas assets across North America. As a Member of the Investment Committee, he evaluated and voted on major capital decisions, portfolio construction, acquisitions, development, divestitures, and private equity fundraising strategy.
Before joining Kayne in 2015, Cory was Senior Vice President, Reservoir & Production Engineering for Goodrich Petroleum Corp. (GDP). In this role he led GDP’s production operations, reservoir engineering, and business development activities. Cory began his career with Chevron USA in Houston, Texas where he managed technical exploration and development teams and projects across North America.
Cory served as President of the East Texas Gas Producer’s Association and is the former Chairman of the Lambda Chi Alpha Houston Alumni Association. He has been active as a fund-raising organizer for St. Jude Children’s Hospital, the United Way and was a Mentor for the Joe Charles Mentor Leadership Program.
Cory holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering, graduating with honors, from Montana State University.
ARIC J. GLASSER
CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
Aric joined MPSC in 2021, after a diverse career in oil and gas spanning from engineering, multi-discipline team management, and leadership. His background is a variety of both domestic and international experience centered around planning, acquisitions and divestitures, project management and mega-project decision and risk analysis. Aric has worked internationally from the arctic to the tropics with partners and governments in Russia, United Kingdom, Italy, Nigeria, United Arab Emirates, Canada, Venezuela, and Indonesia on oil, gas, LNG, and GTL developments from the upstream, midstream, and downstream perspective.
Aric recently served as Director of Innovation at WPX Energy. In that role he built a new Innovation team from scratch and quickly gained cost neutral status by improving business efficiencies and automation. He also acted as a Business Advisor to the President of WPX Energy, Manager of SEC Reserves, as well as Business Development manager in which he oversaw $1.7 Billion in transactions.
Before joining WPX in 2015, Aric was Manager of Business Development and Planning for SM Energy. Aric began his career with ConocoPhillips at the Reservoir Technology Center in Houston, TX and then was transferred to Calgary, Alberta, Canada where he worked on executing large scale well developments. Aric is also the author of a commercially available software for valuations of large-scale E&P developments.
Aric holds a B.S. in Petroleum Engineering, graduating with Highest Honors and Petroleum Engineer of the Year, from Montana Tech University.
SCOTT ST. GERMAINE
VICE PRESIDENT, OPERATIONS
Mr. St. Germaine is a subsurface and manufacturing potash and salt expert, with comprehensive technical knowledge as it concerns subsurface Michigan potash solution mining, and surface evaporation, crystallization, and co-generation. He has over 28 years in subsurface and surface potash operations. Up until 2011, he was the Mosaic Hersey Production Manager, where he held that position for six years. Prior, he was the Mosaic Hersey Capital Investment Manager.
VICE PRESIDENT, PRODUCTION
Mr. Millward has over 43 years in potash solution mining and manufacturing operations. He has served his entire career with Mosaic and its predecessors and has experience in all respects of solution mining and processing of potash and salt, both in Saskatchewan and Michigan. He served a significant tenor at the Mosaic Belle Plaine potash facility, until his transfer to the Mosaic Hersey Potash Facility, where he lastly served as the Mosaic Hersey Production Manager for Salt manufacturing, processing, and sales. Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Arts and Sciences, 1969.
VICE PRESIDENT, POTASH MARKETS AND LOGISTICS
Mr. Forquer is a second generation fertilizer sales and distribution expert. He has over 35 years in potash and fertilizer marketing in the Mid‐west. Beginning in 1984 and until 2006, he was responsible for marketing, selling and distributing potash into every state east of the Mississippi River on behalf of the Michigan Hersey Potash facility for its owners, Mosaic, IMC Global, and Kalium. As Regional Sales Manager for Mosaic, he had successfully grown the Michigan market from 6,000 tons/year to 400,000 tons/year, even when the Hersey potash facility was only capable of 160,000 tons/year. He has additional regional sales and distribution experience as an independent, and for Oxbow Fertilizer, Gavillon Fertilizer, Willber‐Ellis, Agra Land, Mobark, and USS Agri‐ Chemicals. B.S. Business Administration, Central Michigan University, 1978.
VICE PRESIDENT, SALT MARKETS
Mr. Fauster is a salt distribution and marketing expert with a financial background in food and commodities. He has over 18 years in salt logistics, sales, finance, and business development. He has purchased salt from the Mosaic Hersey Facility for numerous years and comprehensively understands the demand and supply characteristics of the greater salt markets, in water softening, food, ice melt, agricultural, industrial, and brine. He is the CEO of a current salt player with far reaching influence throughout the Midwest, great lakes, east and south‐east markets. B.A. Hillsdale College,1993.
VICE PRESIDENT, COMMISSIONING
Mr. Janotta is a expert in solution mining crystallization, product drying, process troubleshooting, pond management, screening, chemical engineering, evaporation, compacting technologies, commissioning and operational readiness, potash sales and marketing, and change management. He was responsible for all commissioning and trouble shooting at the Mosaic Company, and commissioned Hersey in 1997. Mr. Janotta was also responsible for all industrial product specification and product management for the major industrial clients of potash worldwide.
VICE PRESIDENT, ENGINEERING
Mr. Nielsen is an evaporation and crystallization expert with an emphasis on the extractive industries, including potash and salt. Mr. Nielsen has designed and erected and commissioned all types of evaporator and crystaillzer systems, having been the Crystallizer Department Manager and Director of Technology at Swenson Technologies for over 20 Years. Mr. Nielsen has been in virtually every evaporation and crystallization facility worldwide and is one of the foremost experts for complex design, trouble shooting, and commissioning of advanced facilities. He has over 38 years in process engineering design and operations. B.S. Chemical Engineering. B.S. Computer Science, Minor in Chemistry, Iowa State University 1977.
VICE PRESIDENT, WELLFIELD
Mr. Happ joined the team after 15 successful years in the oil and gas industry. During that time, he developed expertise in drilling, completion, production, facilities, and reservoir operations. He spends a tremendous amount of time in the field to know operations firsthand while working with landowners and regulating agencies to make sure projects are successful on all levels. He managed Wave Petroleum Operating operations before it was sold to Anadarko and was a founder of Northwoods Energy. Mr. Happ has a petroleum engineering degree from the Colorado School of mines, a Master of Science in Global Energy Management form the University of Colorado Denver and is a registered professional engineer.
VICE PRESIDENT, SUBSURFACE
Mr. Plosz is one of the only technical experts in the world in solution mining that has over 35 years of hands on experience; and explicit knowledge as it concerns Hersey in both subsurface and surface processes of solution mining. He has specific expertise as it concerns the evaluation of process capability, assets and costs of mining operations, productivity, quality, assess mining opportunities, and perform competitor analysis. He was specifically responsible for developing the processes and technologies used in Michigan and Saskatchewan potash facilities. He served as General manager of Hersey and led the commissioning and start-up; and also served as the general manager of Belle Plaine. Mr. Plosz last role was senior director of Strategy and Technical Services for the Mosaic Company. He has evaluated existing or potential new mining operations in Russia, Germany, Ethiopia, Republic of Congo, Laos, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, Argentina, US and Canada.
EPC PROJECT MANAGEMENT
Mr. Helper is a specialist in the administering and supervision of Engineering, Procurement, Construction delivery packages. His experience includes over 35 years of large capital intensive processes and industrial projects, including those in excess of 1 Billion dollars. He has represented both the owner and the contractor in project delivery. His experience includes project finance, project development, project management, project execution and dispute resolution. Mr. Helper has held leadership roles in commercial negotiations, project services, and project management at Aker Kvaerner. He has extensive experience with union construction. Mr. Helper has authored and presented project management publications for AACEI and the Construction Industry Institute (CII). He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from Tri State University.
Sandra “Sandy” Keller is the local community liaison and administrator of Michigan Potash & Salt Company.
Sandy grew up on a farm just outside of Evart, Michigan which has been in her family for 115 years. She is active in her community serving as an ordained minister, Secretary of the Evart Area Chamber of Commerce, Membership Captain of the Osceola County Farm Bureau, and newly-elected 2021 board member of the Osceola County Farm Bureau.
Prior to coming back home to the family farm, Sandy spent much of her career in the automobile industry. She worked for Valeo Sylvania Lighting Systems, overseeing the production of headlamps and other parts for Cadillacs. Her commitment and attention to detail eventually led her to working with the Quality Control department across all GM product lines.
In addition to holding the above offices, Sandy is a lifetime member of the VFW, and is active with both the Evart Moose Club and the Evart Women’s Business Club. She has been an ordained minister for 25 years, plays the piano, and enjoys farming, raising horses, peacocks, and numerous pets. She has been married to husband Robert for 34 years and has two grown children.