Meet Our Team

Keith DeSanto, CEO
Keith started his career with the Boston Stock Exchange in 1987 and has since managed and owned NASDAQ Broker Dealers. He purchased the Rhamnolipid-based project in 2004 and has devoted all of his time to developing a cost-effective production method for producing rhamnolipids and developing a control for Citrus Greening using rhamnolipids.

Bruce Harmon, CFO
Graduate of Missouri State University with a B.S. in Accounting, Bruce has managed mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, and SEC registrations (i.e. IPOs, reverse mergers and SB registration) since 1988. He has worked with Rhamnolipid, Inc. since 2010 and is responsible for all financial aspects of Rhamnolipid, Inc.

Richard Pucci, Project Director
Colonel (Ret’d), OMM and Graduate of the Royal Military College with a Masters in Strategic Studies, Richard retired from the Canadian Armed Forces and the Royal Medical Service as the rank of Colonel while serving as the Deputy Commander for the Canadian Forces Health Services at National Defence Headquarters in Ottawa. Richard also served as Chief of Staff. He also served in a variety of command and strategic level staff positions in Canada, the United Kingdom, United States, and operational tours.

Daniel Rojas, Director of Operations

Morgan Rountree, Vice President of Agrilipid, Inc.


Conrad Bernier
From 1988 to 1997, Conrad served as administrator of the Department of Agriculture for the Province of Quebec and managed to change the laws for crop insurance and income stabilization to lower insurance costs for producers and governments. He earned a Bachelor’s in Agricultural Sciences with an animal sciences option, which supplements with a mastery in animal genetics. He was the Director of the Service for the Department of Agriculture. He was also the First Vice- President of the World Association of Agronomists (AMIA).

Dr. Lucien M. Bordeleau
Dr. Lucien M. Bordeleau has an undergraduate degree in Agronomy (1965) and a Masters in Bacteriology (1967) from Laval University, Quebec City, Canada; Doctorate in environmental microbiology from Rutgers University, New Jersey, USA (1971). He is a Member of the Canadian College of Microbiologists (1978), successive research scientist, research director, research coordinator, and advisor in various R&D projects in partnership (Government-university-industry) with national and international organizations including Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Environment Canada, United Nations (UNESCO), OECD, FAO, National Academy of Sciences of USA and various Canadian and American universities (1972-1996). Dr. Bordeleau also has expertise in the areas of biodegradation, biotransformations, fermentation, composting, soil-plant-microbe relationships, biocontrol against plant diseases, preservation, and bioremediation. Principal of Biolistik Ltée, an agro- environment firm specializing in the safe use of microorganisms in soil systems, plants, and water in sustainable production and restoration, as well as in the protection of soil-water-air resources and the efficiency of wastewater treatment systems.


Dr. Jonas Contiero, Brazil

Jonas Contiero graduated in Food Engineering from the State University of Campinas (1977), has a Masters in Food Science and Technology from the University of São Paulo (1984), PhD in Food Engineering from the State University of Campinas (1992), Postdoctoral degree from Ohio State University (1997), and an Associate Professor in 2005. He is currently Prof. Deputy III of the São Paulo State University (UNESP), held the position of Vice Director (2007 - 2011) and Director (2011 - 2015), Executive Vice-President of the Bioenergy Research Institute of Unesp and a Member of ​ the Board of Trustees of Fundunesp. He has experience in Microbiology, with emphasis on Industrial Microbiology and Fermentation, working mainly on the following topics: pseudomonas aeruginosa, biosurfactant, lactic acid, rhamnolipids and submerged fermentation. Jonas has also earned a CNPq Research Productivity Scholarship - Level 1D.

Dr. Baiyu Helen Zhang

Dr. Zhang is Canada Research Chair (Tier II) and Associate Professor in Department of Civil (Environmental) Engineering at Memorial University. Her research mainly focuses on the development of environmental biotechnologies for pollution control and waste management in marine and coastal environments. Her research expertise and interests lie in the areas of marine oil spill response, coastal/inland site remediation, marine oily wastewater treatment, reservoir souring control, fishery/municipal solid waste composting, and environmental monitoring and analysis. She has led or participated in over 20 research grants / contracts (12 as PI) since joining Memorial University in 2010. These include research funds with a total amount of more than $3 million dollars from diverse sources including federal and provincial agencies, such as Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI), and the Research & Development Corp. (RDC) of Newfoundland and Labrador (NL); industry sponsors, such as Petroleum Research NL (PRNL), Suncor Energy, and Altius Resources Inc., and; other international organizations such as United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). She has produced more than 180 technical publications. Her research contributions have been widely recognized in newsletters and magazines such as Canadian Reclamation, Research Matters, Context Magazine (Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers), Genome Atlantic e-Bulletin, Natural Resources Magazine, and Gazette Magazine. She serves the Executive Committee of Canadian Society for Civil Engineering (CSCE) NL Section, as Senior Expert of UNDP, and the Atlantic Region Director of Canadian Association on Water Quality (CAWQ). Dr. Zhang has over 15yr experience dealing with biosurfactants and working with industries.

Dr. Bing Chen

Dr. Bing Chen is a Professor of Department of Civil (Environmental) Engineering and founding Director of the CFI-funded Northern Region Persistent Organic Pollution Control (NRPOP) Lab at Memorial University of Newfoundland. He is also the Executive Director of the pan-Canadian/global Network on Persistent, Emerging and Organic pollution in the Environment (PEOPLE). He has been recognized as a leading researcher worldwide in environmental engineering, particularly in oil spill response and cleanup in harsh environments, advanced wastewater treatment and reuse, and persistent and emerging pollution control. His research strength mainly lies in the innovative integration of traditional environmental engineering with nano-/bio-technologies as well as coupling of modeling methods for decision making. He has led and participated in over 40 research projects and contracts, leading to 300+ publications including 100+ refereed journal papers plus several patents. He has been inducted to the Royal Society of Canada (RSC) College and Global Young Academy (GYA), and has received many other prestigious awards e.g., Terra Nova Young Innovator Award, CFI Leaders Opportunity Fund Awards, and FEAS Research Excellence Awards. He serves as UNDP senior expert, Canada’s Ocean Protection Plan Multi-partner Research Initiative Advisory Committee member, NSERC DG and RTI Evaluation Group member/alternative chair, RSC Expert Panel on oil spills, Editorial Member/Assoc. Editor of 5 journals, and adjunct professors in 6 institutions.

Dr. Xili Duan

Dr. Xili Duan is an Assistant Professor in Mechanical Engineering at Memorial University of Newfoundland. He received his Ph.D. degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Manitoba (2009) in Winnipeg, Canada. He also holds a B.Eng. degree in thermal energy and power engineering (1999) and M.Sc. degree in chemical process machinery (2002), both from the China University of Petroleum in Shandong. Before joining Memorial, Dr. Duan worked with Siemens Energy as a Gas Turbine Combustion Testing and Design Engineer in Ottawa, Canada. Before that he was an NSERC postdoctoral fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he conducted research on boiling heat transfer and two phase flow for nuclear power development. Dr. Duan’s current research interests include phase change heat transfer, multiphase flow drag reduction and separation, and developing metallic surfaces with special wettability for offshore energy applications. He has published 1 book, 1 book chapter and over 50 journal and conference papers. Dr. Duan has supervised over 15 Master and PhD students and led several major research programs funded by NSERC, PRNL, and RDC. Dr. Duan is a registered Professional Engineer in Canada and a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).

Dr. Maria Izabel Camargo-Mathias

Maria obtained her Doctorate in Biological Sciences (Zoology) in 1993 from Universidade Estadual Paulista Júlio de Mesquita Filho and became a full professor in 2010. She was nominated for the three-name list of the Electoral Commission for the position of Director at the National School of Tropical Botany.

Marlus Chorilli

Marlus Chorilli holds a PhD (2007) in Pharmaceutical Sciences from São Paulo State University and is presently Assistant Professor at the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences of Araraquara – São Paulo State University, teaching Pharmacotechniques and Pharmaceutical Technology.

Dr. Patricia Bento da Silva

Patricia Bento da Silve holds a PhD (2012) in inorganic chemistry involving "inorganic compounds applied to TB treatment" in the Chemistry Program IQAR/UNESP and is currently acting as a Postdoctoral researcher at the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences – São Paulo State University.

Beatriz Cristina Pecoraro Sanches

Beatriz Cristina Pecoraro Sanches holds a Master’s Degree in Biotechnology Post-Graduation Program, Chemistry Institute – São Paulo State University (IQ - UNESP) and works with rhamnolipid applications in nanotechnology.

Cinthia Cristine de Moura

Cinthia Cristine de Moura holds a degree in Environmental Engineering from Paulista Júlio de Mesquita Filho State University (2012), a master's degree in Geosciences and Environment from the Paulista Júlio de Mesquita Filho State University (2014) and is currently studying for a PhD in Bioenergy from the State University of São Paulo Júlio de Mesquita Filho, working mainly in the following subjects: rain simulation, compensatory technique, hydrochemistry and environmental remediation.

Dr. Claudio José Von Zuben

Claudio José Von Zuben has a B.S. in Biology (1988), Masters (1992) and Ph.D. of Science in Zoology (1996) at São Paulo State University (UNESP), Rio Claro, São Paulo State, Brazil.

Vinícius Luiz Da Silva

Vinícius Luiz Da Silva holds a Master’s degree in Microbiology at São Paulo State university, Júlio de Mesquita Filho, UNESP, São Paulo, Brazil and has experience focusing on Industrial Microbiology and Fermentation, acting on the following subjects: pseudomonas aeruginosa, biosurfactant, rhamnolipids.

Henrique Ferreira

Henrique Ferreira is an Associate Professor (from Apr/2015), Depto. Bioquímica e Microbiologia, IBRC, UNESP, Rio Claro and has published books such as, “Proceedings of the International Workshop on Xanthomonas citri/citrus canker".

Roberta Barros Lovaglio

Roberta Barros Lovaglio has a Post-graduate degree in Applied Microbiology at the doctoral level with an emphasis on biotechnology and agro-industrial waste, working mainly on the following topics: production and application of rhamnolipids biosurfactants, biodegradation and fermentation.

Dr. Reinaldo Marchetto

Reinaldo Marchetto is a full-time professor at the Institute of Chemistry of UNESP with experience in Chemistry of Macromolecules, Medicinal Chemistry and Biomaterials and scientifically works in the following subjects: peptide synthesis, antimicrobial peptides, topoisomerases mechanisms, solid phase organic synthesis, antitumor drugs and drug-delivery systems. In the Biomaterials area, act in the development of nanocomposites with application in the tissue regeneration.

Ana María Salazar Bryam

Ana María Salazar Bryam is a PhD student at UNESP working with biotechnological production and applications of rhamnolipids from Pseudomonas Aeruginosa. She previously worked with microbial water ecology researching heavy metals bioremediation and focused on biosurfactants production research.