CASFS staff and graduates to headline at 2019 EcoFarm Conference

January 15, 2019

Karen Washington, a graduate of the CASFS Apprenticeship training program in organic farming and gardening, will present a keynote address at the 2019 Ecological Farming Conference.

The Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems (CASFS) will be well represented at the 39th annual Ecological Farming Conference, one of the nation's premiere gatherings of sustainable agriculture and food systems advocates. The conference takes place January 23–26 at the Asilomar Conference Center in Pacific Grove, California.

Karen Washington, a graduate of the UC Santa Cruz Apprenticeship in Ecological Horticulture, founder of Rise & Root Farm, and co-founder of Black Urban Growers, will deliver an opening keynote at 8 p.m. on Jan. 23 in Merrill Hall.

Joji Muramoto, associate researcher in environmental studies who has spent more than 20 years partnering with farmers to pioneer soil-management strategies for organic farming, will co-lead a workshop on Organic Soil Fertility Management for Vegetables and Strawberries.

The full Eco-Farm schedule is online; other CASFS affiliates and apprenticeship graduates who are participating include:

  • Tom Broz, founder of Live Earth Farm, will be honored as a "Successful Organic Farmer"
  • Doron Comerchero, founder and director of the Farm-based youth empowerment program FoodWhat?!, will receive a "Justie Award," also known as an Advocates for Social Justice in Sustainable Agriculture Award
  • Four of the six presenters during the Jan. 23 preconference, "Advancing Equity in Ecological Farming," are apprenticeship graduates: Kellee Matsushita, assistant manager of the Farm Garden at UCSC's Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems; Nancy Vail, co-founder of Pie Ranch in Pescadero; Karen Washington of Rise & Root Farm; and Berkeley-based community food activist Joy Moore.

In addition, CASFS Apprenticeship alumni and staff are participating in the following workshops:

  • Labor Laws and Regulations for Farm Owners — Neil Thapar of the Sustainable Economies Law Center and Marsha Habib of Oya Organics
  • Grazing Sheep in Perennial Crop Systems — Kelly Mulville of Paicines Ranch
  • Pastured Poultry: Practices that work — Teresa Kurtak of Fifth Crow Farm and Caleb Baron of Fogline Farm
  • Decolonizing Experiential Ag: Creating Space for Liberatory Learning — Christof Bernau, Kellee Matsushita, and David Robles of CASFS
  • Queering Ecology: Toward a World View that Affirms All Life — Moretta Browne of the Pesticide Action Network, San Francisco landscaper Edgar Xochitl, and Clare Riesman of Windy City Harvest

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