I grew up in southern Oregon, and pursued a degree in International Studies at the University of Oregon in which my academic focus was peace studies, human rights, and conflict resolution. At school I became very involved in the university’s urban farm, and later delved further into my fascination with place and agriculture during a study abroad in Cameroon. My honor’s thesis explored urban agriculture and urban development, and seeded a research fellowship titled: “Creating Local in the Global: Case Studies of Urban Agriculture in Eugene/Springfield, Oregon and Dschang, Cameroon.” After college I landed in Butte, MT with a job helping to start a demonstration farm for an environmental non-profit, where I worked for almost two years before I came out to Whidbey to be the Good Cheer Apprentice. This is now my fourth season with Good Cheer.
Not only do I love growing food because I get to connect with place and community while being outside everyday, but it also allows me to professionally pursue something that is philosophically important to me. I want to do as much good for others and myself as is within my faculty, and try my hardest to not harm someone else in the process. So far, the best bet I’ve found in accomplishing this is to grow as much food as I can in the most environmentally responsible way for financially disadvantaged people who do not often get much choice in how they eat. Farming for the Good Cheer Food Bank allows the freedom to educate and expose people to growing their own food, while also providing them with healthy vegetables and fruit to take home to nourish their friends and family.