Meet Our Leadership Team

Photo of Tony Talalay, CEO Brassica

Photo credit: Kei Kondo

Antony (Tony) Talalay, CEO and Co-Founder

Tony Talalay is the CEO, co-founder and member of the Board of Managers of Brassica Protection Products. As a co-founder and CEO of Brassica, Tony completed strategic licensing agreements with Johns Hopkins University and raised initial and subsequent rounds of financing for the company from friends, family and angel investors, now totaling more than $7 million. He developed a global network of fresh sprout growers for Brassica’s initial business model. The sprout business was ultimately sold to focus on stronger growth opportunities in the dietary supplement, and functional food and beverage industries. Brassica maintains a highly-successful licensed fresh sprout business in Japan.

Prior to starting Brassica in 1997, Tony worked in the marketing and advertising industries for more than 20 years. He began his career as a brand manager at General Foods. Subsequently, he spent 10 years with Foote, Cone & Belding (FCB) where he was an advertising account manager, ideating and launching a variety of domestic and international marketing programs for Frito-Lay, Sunkist and LifeSavers brands. Later, he served as regional account director for Asia for FCB’s Colgate-Palmolive assignments.

After FCB, Tony was a marketing director for New York Pulse, an early venture from The New York Times Company in consumer on-line information services.

Tony’s advertising and branding experience continued when he joined J. Walter Thompson Worldwide and was named the European director in charge responsible for Unilever hair care brand advertising. Immediately before founding Brassica, Tony served as group director for Nestle Beverage Products at McCann-Erickson, a global advertising firm.

Tony is a member of Har Sinai Congregation and a vigorous fundraiser for many educational institutions, as well as an active supporter of Chess-in-the-Schools – an educational organization that has taught chess to more than 300,000 economically disadvantaged students in New York City public schools. This program helps students develop critical thinking and decision-making skills they can carry with them for the rest of their lives. He and his family are active members and foster parents for the Maryland SPCA.

Tony is a graduate of Yale University and earned an MBA degree from Harvard. He lives in Lutherville, Maryland with his wife and daughter and two rescue dogs. Other than broccoli, his passion is downhill skiing.

 

Photo of Alex Grantz, vp sales and marketing BrassicaAlexander (Alex) Grantz, Ph.D., Vice President Sales and Marketing

Alex Grantz, Ph.D. is the vice president of sales and marketing at Brassica Protection Products. Alex is no stranger to Brassica or the truebroc® brand. Before joining the leadership team, Alex managed Brassica’s relationship with Connell Bros., an international marketer and distributor of specialty ingredients and Brassica’s exclusive partner in Asia Pacific. In this role, he expanded distribution channels for TrueBroc®, which can now be found in food, beverage and supplement products throughout Asia as well as other parts of the world.

Alex is a seasoned executive with a proven track record in translating his knowledge of the food, nutrition and wellness industries into business growth. Since 2003, Alex served in a number of roles, most recently as the regional manager based in Hong Kong, for Wilbur-Ellis Company and its subsidiary, Connell Bros. As regional manager, Alex directed the company’s food and nutrition business in 14 countries across Asia. He successfully developed and implemented sales and marketing strategies that led to consistent double-digit growth.

Alex holds a doctorate degree in biochemistry from the University of California, Berkeley where he studied the structural biology of plant signal transduction pathways. His research has been published in leading plant and biology journals.

Based in Corvallis, Oregon, Alex enjoys playing fútbol, tending to his succulent collection, and exploring new places with his wife Erika. His favorite flavor of Brassica® Tea is Green Tea.

 

Photo of Shane Fantauzzo, Brassica Protection ProductsShane Fantauzzo, Vice President Operations

Shane Fantauzzo is the vice president of operations at Brassica Protection Products. As a member of the Brassica leadership team for more than 11 years, Shane leads the company’s sales of Brassica® Tea and Coffee through its e-commerce platform and retail distribution.

No stranger to the food and beverage industry, Shane was the vice president of operations at LifeForce Foods and an account executive at Country Fresh, Inc. prior to joining Brassica. While at Country Fresh, Inc., Shane successfully grew the grocery sales channel for the company’s fresh-cut fruit and vegetable business. With his background and certifications in Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points (HACCP) and Safe Quality Food Institute’s SQF 2000, Shane is versed in creating and managing food safety initiatives.

Shane spends his time out of the office in the great outdoors. He enjoys camping, fishing and hiking. In addition, Shane is an avid supporter of public radio and volunteers his time with the Colon Cancer Alliance as well as several local Baltimore charities.

Originally from upstate New York, Shane studied marketing and finance at Alfred University. He now lives in Baltimore with his wife Jennifer and their son Dominic.

 

Erica Gray, manager of administrative services, BrassicaErica Gray, Manager Administrative Services

Erica Gray is the administrative services manager at Brassica. When she isn’t managing the day-to-day operations of the office or fulfilling Brassica® Coffee and Tea orders, she is continuing her education at Towson University.

Erica demonstrates a strong commitment to bettering the lives of others. She volunteers at Martha’s Table, an organization that provides food, education and opportunity programs for vulnerable children and families in the DC area. In 2009, she spent three months in Haiti delivering critical health products and services to women in need.

She holds an associate degree in nursing from the Community College of Baltimore County.