14220-B Ostlund Trail North
Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047
Danielle is a recent Minnesota transplant, having spent the last several years studying food systems and working on small farms in Vermont and Wisconsin. As the Farmer Training Program intern, she assists with the logistics that go into planning and facilitating the class sessions for the BRF farmers. Danielle hopes to farm someday, but in the meantime is enjoying time spent working in the agricultural non-profit world (and still getting to hang out with farmers). In the past, she has worked for UW-Extension in St. Croix County, FairShare CSA Coalition and Community GroundWorks both in Madison. When Danielle isn't at Big River Farms, you can find her stocking produce at Mississippi Market Co-op in St. Paul! Just can't get away from those veggies...
Emily comes to MFA with a background in nonprofit project management and administrative work. She was introduced to the unique needs of farmers working at an organization that specializes in creating post-harvest processing tools for farmers in developing countries, and has supported other such projects as the award-winning traveling exhibit "Why Treaties Matter: Self-Government in the Dakota and Ojibwe Nations." She is excited to join MFA and use her experience working among a cross-section of Minnesota's population to support MFA's work of growing a more sustainable food system.
Hilary comes to MFA with a passion for local food and an extensive background in nonprofit and education management. Originally from Oklahoma, she spent 13 years in Boston where she earned an MBA in Public and Nonprofit Management before moving to Minnesota in 2010. Whether in social services or education, Hilary’s entire career has been focused on supporting and creating opportunities for people facing various challenges. She is passionate about strengthening and spreading sustainable agriculture and is excited to work with the community, farmers and staff at Big River Farms to build a more sustainable food system.
Laura May Hedeen joined the team at MFA in spring of 2014, with a passion for connecting social justice issues with sustainable food systems. She comes with a background in nonprofit program coordination and communications, and has previously worked with organizations such as Second Harvest Heartland, Habitat for Humanity Guatemala, and FCUSD Family Support Services. Her interest in agriculture stems from growing up working at her family's garden center in western Wisconsin. Laura is excited to work for an organization that both engages her passions and utilizes her skills.
I believe that food connects people to each other and to the land. It maintains a simple resilient power, a wild nature, something my Peruvian Peace Corps family taught me to honor. Since my education in South America I have worked in many community food systems from the smallest of honeybee colonies to generating awareness of sustainable agriculture at land grant institutions. As a geographer, I search for stories written on the landscape that can teach us how to live more just and sustainable lives. I am fortunate to have learned from many people and places how important food is in building cultural bridges. I am honored to be a part of MN Food Association, to work with farmers in creating diverse and equitable markets for supplying good food for Minnesota homes. For me, the next chapter in the story of agriculture is developing ways to scale up the local food movement so that our institutions and policies reflect a commitment to healthy communities. I am excited to work with you in creating this vision.
May Lee is a certified organic Hmong farmer and a graduate of Minnesota Food Association's farmer training program. Along with her daughter, Mhonpaj, she runs her own farming operation, Mhonpaj's Garden. May farmed in Laos and has been farming in Minnesota for many years. She wholesales produce, has operated a small CSA, and also sells at St. Paul Farmers Market, Mill City Farmers' Market, and White Bear Lake Farmers' Market.
As MFA's Farm Director Molly Schaus brings an extensive background in organic agriculture, having worked on organic farms both tiny and large in Minnesota, Colorado, and South Dakota. Most recently she spent the past four seasons managing and training the seasonal harvest crew at Gardens of Eagan in Northfield, MN. Before farming, she studied math at St. Olaf College, which she eagerly applies to tasks such as analyzing the season's records. She loves building relationships with other farmers and solving problems with diverse groups of people. When not farming, Molly spends time reading, running, cooking, and playing board games. She lives in Minneapolis with her husband and gray farm cat.