Annual Business Conference 2021

DECEMBER 31 - 31, 1969 |

Join us on February 17-19, 2020 for The Fertilizer Institute 2020 Annual Business Conference. The Annual Conference is "business central" where TFI members, industry professionals and representatives will come together to do business, network, and gain insight from experts on leadership, innovation, the economy, and more. The Nutrients for Life Foundation (NLF) will kick off the meeting with its annual golf tournament.

Secure your spot today. We look forward to seeing you in Palm Springs!

Register Online



Conference Highlights
Nutrients for Life Foundation Fundraiser Golf Tournament
Monday, February 17 | 8:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

The Fertilizer Cup is up for grabs!

Invite your company’s or customers’ best golfers, assemble a team – or two – and compete for industry bragging rights! The Nutrients for Life Foundation is pleased to host its annual fundraising golf tournament on Monday, February 17!

>> Download the Golf Registration Form

New this year: You must be registered for the Annual Business Conference to secure a discounted guest room at the JW Marriott, Desert Springs. Once you register, a confirmation email will be sent with information on how to reserve rooms via a secure website or over the telephone. 

Register Online 
(individual and group registration available)

>> Register for the Nutrients for Life Foundation Fundraiser Golf Tournament

Conference Fees


Before January 3, 2020                 After January 3, 2020

$995 per attendee                           $1,195 per attendee



Before January 3, 2020                After January 3, 2020

$1,600 per attendee                       $1,800 per attendee

(guests are welcome to attend receptions on Monday and Tuesday evening)

$125 per guest

The registration fee includes:

  • Attendance at all conference keynote sessions
  • Full breakfast on Tuesday and Wednesday served during conference keynote sessions
  • Welcome Reception
  • Closing Reception
  • Networking Lounge with hosted coffee and cocktails
  • Conference APP to access conference schedule, attendee list, suite listing, and key conference information
  • Attendance list, via the Conference APP


Payment Options: Credit Cards, Checks, and Wire Transfers

Checks: Make checks payable to The Fertilizer Institute, drawn on a U.S. bank.

Wire Transfer: Please contact TFI at [email protected] for wire transfer information.
The name(s) of the attendees must appear on the check/wire transfer; all added processing fees will be charged to the issuer of the check/wire transfer.  

Credit Cards: We accept Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. Please provide your credit card number, expiration date, your three- or four-digit security code, and the credit card billing address. All credit card transactions are processed in U.S. dollars and subject to the current U.S. exchange rate.  

The Fertilizer Institute is not responsible for foreign check or wire transaction processing fees not included in the actual transfer. Attendees will be required to pay the fee if the check is not drawn on a U.S. bank or if a wire transaction processing fee is not included in the actual transfer.



Cancellations must be received via email to Valerie Sutton, [email protected] by January 17, 2020 for a refund of the registration fee (less 25% administrative fee). No telephone cancellations are accepted. After January 17, 2020, all registrations will be non-refundable. No-show attendees will not be refunded. Substitutions may be made by contacting TFI's conference department or on-site. Refunds for payments made by check will be processed within two weeks following the conference.


Registration List

A list of registered attendees will be available on the conference app. A link to the attendee list will be provided in the registration confirmation email. As the list will be revised daily, be sure to save this email for future reference. Paper copies of the list will NOT be available at the meeting.

Conference registrations are not official until payment is received.


Passport and Visa Information

A valid passport, and in many cases a visa, is required for entry into the United States. Attendees are encouraged to contact the nearest American Consulate for visa requirements applicable to them and start their application process. The State Department suggests applying for visas as early as possible.

You might need a letter from TFI inviting you to attend and/or confirm your attendance to receive a visa. If the American Consulate in your country requires originals to be sent to you, please provide a credit card number to cover courier fees. Once your registration fee has been paid, TFI will provide you with a letter of invitation to our 2020 Annual Business Conference along with a letter in support of your visa application. Our letters do not guarantee a visa will be issued nor do they act as an endorsement of you. To provide your support letter, please provide the required information below:

  • Full name as it appears on your passport
  • Country of Issue
  • Passport number and date of expiration
  • Date of birth
  • Complete organization name
  • Job title and address
  • Complete address of American Embassy where you are applying for the visa

These two letters will be e-mailed or faxed to you. Note: Attendees requiring an original shipped by express service must provide an account number to pay for service.)

Antitrust Policy

To assist with compliance, TFI’s antitrust policy can be downloaded and is also included on the conference APP. Please review the document and contact TFI with any questions.

February 16

1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
TFI Satellite Registration

February 17

8:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Nutrients for Life Foundation Fundraiser Golf Tournament
9:00 a.m – 5:00 p.m.
Registration and Exhibits
9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Networking Lounge, Coffee Service
9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
4R Committee Meeting and Lunch
10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Micronutrient Committee Meeting
1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Shaping the Future of TFI's State of the Fertilizer Industry Report

Help us shape the future of TFI’s State of the Fertilizer Industry Report with your recommendations as we move forward in reporting sustainability data and trends. Additionally, your suggestions are welcome as we look to incorporate a broader reach of TFI members to ensure all relevant industry sectors are included for future reports.


Margie Flynn, Senior Partner of BrownFlynn (an ERM company), will facilitate and kick-off the discussion with case studies that demonstrate how other companies address sustainability and communicate their corporate responsibility programs. For more than 20 years, BrownFlynn has been a leading corporate sustainability and governance consulting firm, helping clients navigate the challenges of telling their sustainability story. Margie has experience working within the manufacturing and agricultural sectors.

2:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Executive Committee Meeting (invitation only)
5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
TFI Exhibitors Reception

February 18

6:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Registration and Exhibits
6:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Networking Lounge, Coffee Service
7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Opening Breakfast and Keynote Address

Keynote Speaker: Jon Meacham, Presidential Historian and Author

10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Nutrients for Life Foundation Board of Directors Meeting (invitation only)
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
TFI Board of Directors Lunch (invitation only)
1:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
TFI Board of Directors Meeting (invitation only)
3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
TFI Transportation Committee Meeting (invitation only)
4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Fertilizer Canada Transportation Committee Meeting (invitation only)
5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
TFI Networking Reception

February 19

6:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Registration and Exhibits
6:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Networking Lounge, Coffee Service
7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Closing Breakfast and Keynote Address

Keynote: Theresa Payton, First Female White House CIO

Leading Cybersecurity Expert, and 2019 Woman Cybersecurity Leader of the Year

Hotel Information

JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa
74855 Country Club Drive
Palm Desert, California 92260-1999

Welcome to Palm Springs!

Reservation Cut-off Date: January 23, 2020. Discounted group rates are only available to those who register for the conference.


New this year: You must be registered for the Annual Business Conference to secure a discounted guest room at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa. Once you register for the conference a web-based reservations link and telephone number will be provided in your confirmation email. Room rates do not include tax. To avoid an inconvenient billing of one night’s room and tax, you must cancel your room reservation 72 hours prior to your arrival date.


Beware of Housing Pirates
Please make sure to book your hotel directly with the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa. Beware of companies misrepresenting themselves as affiliated with TFI or the 2020 Annual Business Conference as TFI will not be able to assist you with any housing problems with reservations made through a third party. If you have further questions or concerns please contact Mariana Gallo, Senior Director, Conferences, [email protected]


Single/Double Occupancy:                 $295
Triple/Quadruple Occupancy:             $295
(plus applicable taxes)

Discounted Resort Fee: a $10.00 per night plus tax resort fee will be charged per day.


Reservation Cut-off Date: January 23, 2020


Check in time: 4:00 p.m. / Check out time: 11:00 a.m.


Hotel Cancellation Policy: Guest Room cancellations must be made no less than 72 hours prior to arrival. Any reservation that is not canceled and does not arrive will be charged one (1) night's room and tax to the guaranteed method of payment on the reservation.

Early Departure Fee:  The hotel has an early departure fee of one (1) night's room and tax. Departure dates are reconfirmed at check-in and are subject to a fee if changed after the check-in process is complete.

Requesting Ten or More Rooms?

Requests for blocks of ten or more rooms should be made to Greg Carino, Group Reservations Supervisor
Email: [email protected]
Tel: (760) 862-1565

Affiliate Hospitality Suites and Meeting Room Rentals please refer to the Suite Tab above.

Dining and Activities Guide

Fine Dining Opportunities:

Off-Site Recreation: 


Airport and Ground Transportation

Palm Springs International Airport (PSP), 12 miles or a 20-30 minute drive
Cab fare to/from PSIA is estimated to be $50. Use airport code PSP when making reservations online.

Driving Directions

Travel west on East Tahquitz Canyon Way toward North Civic Drive. Make a U-turn at North Civic Drive then turn right onto El Cielo Road. Travel 1.5 miles to Escoba Drive and turn right. Travel 0.3 miles and turn left onto CA-111 Business South/East Palm Canyon Drive. Follow East Palm Canyon Drive for 5.7 miles to Country Club Drive and turn left. Travel 4.3 miles to Desert Springs Drive and turn right. The hotel will be on the right. 

Parking Options

On-site parking, fee: $8 hourly, $25 daily
Valet parking, fee: $34 daily
Hourly self-park fees apply non-guest/Overnight self-park included in daily resort fee

Car Rentals

At this property: Hertz 
74855 Country Club Drive
Palm Desert, CA 92260
Phone: +1 760-568-6200






Jon Meacham

Presidential Historian and Author

Presidential historian and Pulitzer Prize-winning Author Jon Meacham is one of America's most prominent public intellectuals. A contributor to TIME and The New York Times Book Review, Meacham is a highly sought-after commentator, regularly appearing on CNN and MSNBC.

Known as a skilled orator with a depth of knowledge about politics, religion, and current affairs, Meacham brings historical context to the issues and events impacting our daily lives.

His latest #1 New York Times bestseller, The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels, examines the present moment in American politics and life by looking back at critical times in U.S. history when hope overcame division and fear. Meacham is a co-author of the recently released book, Impeachment: An American History, which reveals the complicated motives behind the three impeachments in U.S. history.

Meacham’s Presidential biography, Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush, debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestsellers list. The Times said, “Destiny and Power reflects the qualities of both subject and biographer: judicious, balanced, deliberative, with a deep appreciation of history and the personalities who shape it.” Meacham delivered eulogies for both President George H.W. Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush.

Meacham's #1 New York Times bestseller, Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power, was hailed as "masterful and intimate" by Fortune magazine. His other national bestsellers include Franklin and Winston, American Gospel, and American Lion: Andrew Jackson in the White House, which won the Pulitzer Prize in 2009.
A contributing editor at TIME, Meacham writes for the magazine’s Ideas section. He also pens “The Long View” column in The New York Times Book Review in which he “looks back at books that speak to our current historical and cultural moment.” He served as Newsweek's managing editor from 1998 to 2006 and editor from 2006 to 2010. The New York Times called him “one of the most influential editors in the news magazine business.”

Meacham is a frequent guest on Morning Joe; Real Time with Bill Maher; The 11th Hour, and was featured in Ken Burns’ documentary series The Roosevelts: An Intimate History. Fox News produced an hour-long special about Meacham’s Destiny and Power in November 2015.

Named a “Global Leader for Tomorrow” by the World Economic Forum, he is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a fellow of the Society of American Historians, and chairs the National Advisory Board of the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics at Washington University. Meacham is a Distinguished Visiting Professor of History at The University of the South and a Visiting Distinguished Professor at Vanderbilt. He is currently at work on a biography of James and Dolley Madison. 

Theresa Payton

First Female White House CIO, Leading Cybersecurity Expert, and 2019 Woman Cybersecurity Leader of the Year

As one of the nation’s most respected authorities on cybersecurity, Theresa Payton is also a highly sought-after AI keynote speaker. 

From the impact of the Internet of Things to securing Big Data. Payton is the cybersecurity expert that organizations turn to for discreet help during data breaches and to improve IT systems and strategies. She made history as the first female to serve as White House Chief Information Officer and currently helps organizations in both the public and private sectors protect their most valuable resources.  

Before overseeing IT operations as CIO for President George W. Bush and his administration, she held executive roles in banking technology for two of the country’s top financial institutions. After serving in the White House, she went on to co-found Dark3, a cybersecurity product company, and Fortalice Solutions, a world-class cybersecurity consulting firm ranked a “Top 5 Most Innovative Cybersecurity Company” in Northern Virginia, Maryland, and DC.  

Named one of the “Top 25 Most Influential People in Security” by Security Magazine, Payton was also featured in the book 100 Fascinating Women Fighting Cybercrime and honored as the 2019 Woman Cybersecurity Leader of the Year. She is the author of several publications on IT strategy and cybersecurity, including Manipulated: Inside the Cyberwar to Hijack Elections and Distort the Truth, scheduled for release in April of 2020.  

Margie Flynn

Senior Partner at BrownFlynn, an ERM Group Company

With an extensive background in corporate responsibility and sustainability, Margie Flynn is well-versed in triple-bottom-line impact and has been instrumental in shaping a variety of sustainability strategies for regional, national, and global corporations and organizations. Her areas of expertise include ESG strategy, governance, goal setting, stakeholder engagement, brand enhancement, internal/external ESG communications, and executive trainings. 

Flynn is Partner in Charge of several accounts and valued advisor to her clients. She leads with strong commitments to ethical business practices while understanding global impact. Flynn, a sought-after speaker, has written extensively on sustainability and entrepreneurship for local and national publications.

Sponsor Prospectus


Supporting Sponsors

Interested in Sponsor or Exhibit Opportunities?

Requests are due by January 31, 2020.

Suites and Meeting Rooms

Requests for suites and meeting space should be sent directly to The Fertilizer Institute through our online forms (links below). Suites and meeting rooms are available to members who have registered and paid to attend the conference.

Non-members who request suites and meeting rooms are assessed a $2,800 booking fee for suites and a $1,800 booking fee for meeting space. These fees are in addition to the hotel's daily rate and tax for the suite and/or meeting space. The booking fee is waived for members.

To ensure all participants have a successful conference TFI has established policies and procedures for requesting and managing the suites.

Requests for suites must be directed to The Fertilizer Institute. The hotel cannot accept requests.

  1. All requested suites and meeting rooms are to be made through the on-line form. TFI will not honor requests emailed to the conference team.
  2. TFI Members have the first choice of suites.
  3. We cannot guarantee your first requested suite. In the comment column please note your second and third requested suite.
  4. Suites and meeting rooms will only be assigned to registered and paid conference attendees.



  1.  All individuals work in the suite or meeting room and/or affiliated attending meetings in the suite or meeting room must be registered for the conference. GROUP DISCOUNTS are available on the on-line registration form.


Suite Fees

  1. Members can secure suites at the hotel's per-night suite rate (plus taxes), with no additional booking fee from TFI.
  2. Non-members can secure suites at the hotel's per-night suite rate (plus taxes), PLUS an additional $2,800 one-time booking fee from TFI.
  3. All food, beverage, audiovisual equipment, upgraded wi-fi, and any other fees are the responsibility of the suite holder.
  4. Credit card deposits are required to confirm bookings with the hotel.

Meeting Room Fees

  1. Members can secure Meeting Rooms at the hotel's meeting room rental fee of $400 per room, per day (plus taxes), with no additional booking fee from TFI.
  2. Non-members can secure suites at the hotel's meeting room rental fee of $400 per room, per day  (plus taxes), PLUS an additional $1,800 one-time booking fee from TFI.
  3. All food, beverage, audiovisual equipment, upgraded wi-fi, and any other fees are the responsibility of the suite holder.
  4. Credit Cards deposits are required to confirm booking with the hotel.

Suite Access and Scheduling

  1. Suite holders can check into their suite starting at 1:00 pm on the day of arrival. Check-out is no later than 2:00 pm on the last day
  2. If you require early check-in you must reserve the suite the night before.
  3. Companies are asked to schedule meetings in suites and meetign rooms AFTER the 9:00 am opening sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday.


  1. Suite and meeting room arrangements and payments are handled directly by the hotel. Full contact information is listed on the form.
  2. Suite and Meeting Room holders who request their locations be made public will have details posted on the Conference APP, meter boards at each tower/lobby level, and on the guest room floor. No signs will be posted on individual suite doors. Provide the name of the company to be posted on the suite request form and when finalizing details with the hotel.
  3. For suite holders, a one-time fee, per room fee of $250 will be charged for bed removal of any suite and/or connecting bedroom.



  1. Suites cancelled after January 24 will be charged a one-night cancellation fee, plus booking fees owed to TFI; meeting rooms will be charged a one-day rental fee.
  2. Suites cancelled after February 7 will be charged for all nights reserved, plus booking fees owed to TFI; meeting rooms will be charged for all days reserved.



Click here to view the suite brochure

Reserve Suites            Reserve Meeting Rooms


If you have questions or need assistance please contact Mariana Gallo, Senior Director, Conferences, [email protected].



Tabletop exhibit space is available for TFI members only and on a complimentary basis. Space is limited and will be assigned on a first-come, first-serve basis. All requests for exhibit space must be made no later than January 31, 2020.  Confirmation and table assignments, along with an exhibitor prospectus, will be sent to exhibitors no later than January 20, 2020.

Please contact Valerie Sutton at [email protected]

Reserve Exhibit Space

Relax, Renew and Beautify

Spa Day Fundraiser for Nutrients for Life Foundation

One-Day Only - February 17, 2020

Donate $100 or more to the NFL Foundation to get special rates on the Spa's most popular services.

Services must be reserved by February 7, 2020 to qualify for the special NFL discounted rates.

Download the flyer for full details.

Spa fundraiser flyer