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• Butler joins the senior leadership of Impossible Foods as the startup’s first Chief People Officer 

• Reporting to the CEO, Butler will oversee human resources, recruiting, leadership & development, and other strategic people initiatives to support the startup’s rapid growth 

• Former Google director is the latest senior executive to join the food startup’s growing team 

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Oct. 13, 2017 -- Impossible Foods has hired veteran human resources leader Marcella Butler as the company’s first Chief People Officer. 

Butler, who moved back to California’s Silicon Valley earlier this month to lead the startup’s human resources department, reports directly to CEO and Founder Dr. Patrick O. Brown and serves on the company’s senior leadership team. 

Previously, Butler was head of human resources at a publicly-traded enterprise software company, Opower, which is now part of Oracle. From 2007- 2012, she was a Director in People Operations at Google, supporting HR and Recruiting for the Product Management organization at Google headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. She later moved into Corporate Development to lead Google’s Mergers & Acquisitions Integration team. 

Before that, Butler was Chief Operating Officer and Chief Compliance Officer of SEC-registered investment advisor Pershing Square Capital Management in New York. She also held senior executive positions at Alliance Bernstein and Egon Zehnder International in New York and London. She began her career in the financial services practice of McKinsey & Company. 

Butler is a native Texan with a master’s degree in Public Policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. She received her undergraduate degree, Phi Beta Kappa, in Geography from the University of North Carolina, where she was a Morehead-Cain Scholar. She is an ultra-long-distance cyclist and has earned the “Super Randonneur” designation every year since 2007. 

“Marcella brings to our People team a strong business perspective gained in organizations ranging from startups to major multinationals, in roles from finance and operations to HR leadership,” Brown said. “She’s an ultra-long-distance athlete with the confidence and discipline to go the distance as Impossible Foods grows rapidly.” 

Butler is the latest executive to join Impossible Foods. In June, Dr. David J. Lipman, M.D., joined the company in the newly created role of Chief Science Officer, reporting directly to the CEO. In May, food industry veteran Chris Gregg took over as Senior Vice President of Supply Chain and Manufacturing, overseeing operations for manufacturing and supply chain. 


Among her many responsibilities, Butler will be in charge of recruiting and retention as the company embarks on one of the most audacious ramps in the food sector. Impossible Foods launched production in September at its first large-scale manufacturing plant, in Oakland, Calif. 

The company’s flagship product, the Impossible Burger, debuted at Chef David Chang’s Momofuku Nishi in Manhattan last year and is now served in more than 100 restaurants nationwide. Click here for a full list of restaurants that serve the Impossible Burger. 

As the Oakland plant ramps up over the next several quarters, Impossible Foods plans to expand distribution to thousands of restaurants in the United States and overseas. The company is also developing additional plant-based meat and dairy products. 


In development since 2011, the Impossible Burger is the world's only burger that handles, smells, cooks and tastes like ground beef from cows -- but is made entirely from plants. 

The Impossible Burger is produced without added hormones, antibiotics, cholesterol or artificial flavors. It uses about 75% less water, generates about 87% fewer greenhouse gases, and requires around 95% less land than conventional ground beef from cows. 

The Impossible Burger is made from simple ingredients found in nature, including water, wheat protein, coconut oil and potato protein. One special ingredient -- heme -- contributes to the characteristic taste of meat and catalyzes the production of flavors and aromas when meat is cooked. Impossible Foods discovered how to use heme from plants, transforming the Impossible Burger into a carnivore’s delight that’s light on the planet. 

ABOUT IMPOSSIBLE FOODS Based in Redwood City, California, Impossible Foods makes delicious, nutritious meat and dairy products directly from plants — with a much smaller environmental footprint than meat from animals. The privately held company was founded in 2011 by Patrick O. Brown, M.D., Ph.D., formerly a biochemistry professor and Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at Stanford University. Investors include Khosla Ventures, Bill Gates, Google Ventures, Horizons Ventures, UBS, Viking Global Investors, Temasek and Open Philanthropy Project. 

More information: 

Press kit: 

Media Contact: Impossible Foods: Jessica Appelgren, [email protected] 

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