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Meet Daniel Donate: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Daniel Donate
Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, Agribusiness – California

Born and raised in Salinas, California, Daniel has been surrounded by agriculture his whole life. It was in Salinas that his parents made a living as laborers, but before coming to the United States, they tended their own lands in Mexico and grew strawberries as their primary crop. As a child, Daniel was enrolled in a children’s development program that gave him greater insight into the agricultural industry and left a lasting impression on him.

Meet Deseree Fontenot: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Deseree Fontenot is a scholar, activist and budding farmer rooted in Oakland, California by way of Eunice, Louisiana. She is currently an apprentice at the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems’ ecological horticulture program at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Meet Emilio Otontiopa: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Emilio Otontiopa was born on a ranch in Hildago, Mexico and began farming at age 11 growing beans, corn, cilantro, and squash. He immigrated to the United States when he was 19, and did irrigation for large farms. He went on to be an artichoke harvester, which was very hard work.

Meet Fidel Lazaro: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Fidel Lazaro was born in San Jose las Flores, an indigenous village in Putla, Oaxaca, and grew up on his grandmother's cattle and goat ranch. He also farmed his own land for five years while living in San Jose de Flores. When he was 18, Lazaro moved to the United States and spent eight years working in landscaping and 22 years as a harvester on a large organic farm.

Meet Gracie Lynn Hauser: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Gracie Lynn Hauser
Wisconsin

I currently grow vegetables in our small garden located on 13 acres of farmland. I am 16 years old, and my dad is a used car salesman and my mother teaches at a rural public school. I am involved in the FFA program and take courses in plant science, which allows me to work in our school’s two greenhouses and a high tunnel.

Meet Gwen Larrow: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Gwen Larrow believes that pursuing a career in organic agriculture will benefit the people, oceans, and economy of Hawaii. The vast majority of Hawaii's food is imported, and Larrow believes she has a responsibility to provide an option of affordable local produce to the people of Hawaii.

Meet Haleigh Jones: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Haleigh Jones is an agriculture environmental plant science major at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. She has always been very passionate about agriculture and working in the industry, and in high school, Jones served as an officer in FFA.

Meet Haleigh Jones: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Haleigh Jones is an agriculture and environmental plant science major at California Polytechnic State University of San Luis Obispo. She was born and raised on the Central Coast of California in the Santa Maria Valley. Growing up, Jones was surrounded by conventional farming—as it is a huge part of the local economy—and she never really questioned the production techniques being practiced until she was introduced to organic farming.

Meet Hanneke Van Dyke: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

Originally from suburban Arizona, Hanneke Van Dyke came to organic agriculture through her work in community health, education, and nutrition. Her belief that access to a diet rich in diverse, nutritious foods is a fundamental human right led her to an interest in sustainable food systems through which a focus on human nutrition also prioritizes care for the land, care for those who work on it, and a mindful use of limited resources.

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