Glen began his working career on cattle and horse ranches in Montana. He served two terms as a Peace Corps volunteer, then worked as an independent consultant in Thailand in the areas of community-based aquaculture, integrated agriculture and natural resource management. From 1994–2006, he served as Country Director for SWISSAID’s Burma Program, focusing on community-based development and building civil society. He was based in Thailand for 7 years and Burma for 5 years. Glen earned a BS in Wildlife Biology and an MS in Applied Conservation at the University of Montana. He became executive director of MFA in March 2007.
From 1972-1976, Joci owned and operated a dairy goat and vegetable farm near Clear Lake, WI. She worked from 1979-1997 in the areas of child abuse and domestic violence prevention. In 1984, she became the director of Parents Anonymous of MN, and later of CornerHouse. In 1998, Joci and her husband purchased an independent bookstore in Stillwater, MN and operated that until 2008. She earned degrees at Metropolitan State University and St. Mary's University. Joci joined the staff of Minnesota Food Association in February 2006.
Aaron Blyth's interest in farming arose from his time spent in Central America seeing just how integral the practice of farming is to everyday lives. Since then he has apprenticed and taught apprentices at the Center for Agroecology & Sustainable Food Systems at UC Santa Cruz, worked with Linda Halley & Richard DeWilde at Harmony Valley Farm in Viroqua, WI, and been a part of the management team at a mature and biologically diverse three-family farm in Oregon. Aaron is especially interested in fertility management, irrigation, and considering the whole farm system. Aaron has been the Farm Manager since 2009.
Born and raised in Minnesota, Katie returned to live in the Midwest in December of 2009. She graduated from Hope College in 2001 with a degree in theology and an interest in farming. She chose to pursue her interest in farming by interning on organic farms. In 2006, she started a market garden at a resort and retreat center to provide the produce for the restaurant on the property. With a strong interest in other cultures, Katie has spent time traveling in Central America, as well as Ghana and Argentina. Along with working at MFA, she also works part time at her family’s farm in Delano, Cramer Organics. Katie joined the Minnesota Food Association Staff as the Training Coordinator in April 2010.
Strider, aka Wayne Hammer, was born in St. Paul, MN, raised in Chisago City, MN and began working in the fields and barns when he was 10. He attended Metropolitan Community College. Much of his work has been spent in the non-profit sector focusing on human rights and environmental issues. Since 2000, he has focused on issues around the cultivation of the local sustainable foodshed.
Admittedly, a sales person by nature but always curious, Vince got into organic farming because he wanted more control in the quality of the food that he eats. He soon realized that farming his own food is not enough. He wanted to help change the system and make it better, and working at MFA is the foundation towards his path.
Kat is a volunteer with the St. Joseph Worker program, a mission of the Sisters of St. Joseph. She does parts of everything at MFA; including farming, research, communications and events. She loves being outdoors, learning new things, community and biking.