John Pade

John Pade

Entrepreneur, Author, Educator Specializing in Aquaponic Food Production

“As natural resources such as clean water, soil and air become less available, it becomes clear that controlled environment agriculture is the future of food production on this planet.” -John Pade

About John

John Pade, co‐founder and co‐owner of Nelson and Pade, Inc.®, has been actively involved in soilless food production and indoor farming since the mid 1980’s, as a grower, builder, system developer, consultant, author and educator.  In the early 90’s, along with his partner, Rebecca Nelson, he began studying aquaponics and building and designing aquaponic systems.  Since that time, Nelson and Pade, Inc.® has designed, built and shipped economically and environmentally sustainable aquaponic systems of John’s design that number in the hundreds  and are utilized in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, Europe and Asia.   John has designed the patented ZDEP® aquaponic system, which dramatically increases food production while decreasing waste.  John has taught aquaponics to individuals from 85countries in Nelson and Pade, Inc.® Aquaponics Master Class® and in the UWSP Introduction to Aquaponics course.


2014-2015 Aquaponics Advisory Council, Certified Naturally Grown

2012 – Appointed Adjunct Instructor, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

2011-2012 – Completed product testing and filed patent on ZDEP® (Zero Discharge / Extra Production) Aquaponic systems

2009 – 2012 – Taught aquaponics workshops to students from 54 countries and 49 US states

2009 – Awarded Agri-business of the Year (Nelson and Pade, Inc.®), Tri-county Economic Summit

2006 – 2012 – Co-development of Clear Flow Aquaponic Systems® and ZDEP® Aquaponic Systems

2006 – 2012 – Created a dynamic spreadsheet to calculate aquaponic system design parameters, components, ratios and costs

2005 – 2012 – Designed, developed and launched the first complete line of aquaponic systems available for applications ranging from hobby to commercial.

2000 – 2005 – Designed and built aquaponic systems for clients in U.S. and Canada

2000 – Designed and built first ½ acre aquaponic controlled environment greenhouse

1998 – 2012 – Invited speaker on aquaponics at International conferences and events

1997 – 2012 – Co-Publisher of Aquaponics Journal®

1985 – Built first large scale hydroponic greenhouse in U.S.

1978 – Co-Developed Law Enforcement Diver Training Program for Moraine Park Technical Institute

1970 – Logged onto the Department of Defense global communication system, now known as the Internet

Featured Speaker /Conference Presentations

2009 – present – Aquaponics and Controlled Environment Workshops, Montello, Wisconsin, USA
2011 – Aquaculture America, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
2011 – Wisconsin Aquaculture Association Annual Conference, Wisconsin, USA
2010 – International Conference on Soilless Culture, Singapore
2010 – International Conference on Hydroponics, Toluca, Mexico
2010 – Midwest Recirculating Aquaculture Workshop, Wisconsin, USA
2009 – International Conference on Soilless Culture, Earth University, Costa Rica
2008 – Aquaponic and Aquaculture Conference, Guadalajara, Mexico
2008 – 6th International Conference on Hydroponics, Toluca, Mexico
2007 – International Conference on Soilless Culture, San Jose, Costa Rica
2006 – 5th International Conference on Hydroponics, Toluca, Mexico
2004 – Aquaponics Seminars and Speaking Tour, Brisbane, Australia
2004 – 4th International Conference on Hydroponics, Toluca, Mexico
2004 – Science Alive Conference, Tucson, Arizona, USA
2003 – Science Alive Conference, Tucson, Arizona, USA
2002 – Science Alive Conference, Tucson, Arizona, USA
2001 – Hydroponic Grower’s Conference, Orlando, Florida, USA
1999 – California Science Teachers Association, Long Beach, California, USA
1998 – Hydroponic Society of America Conference, Universal city, California, USA
1998 – Hydroponic Merchants Association conference, San Jose, California, USA
1998 – Aquaponics Training Workshops, Mariposa, California, USA