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Community Agriculture Alliance: A new year for Community Agriculture Alliance

Marsha Daughenbaugh/For Steamboat Today
Community Agriculture Alliance
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— Food plays an important role during the holidays. Whether you enjoyed a banquet with family, a party with friends or are part of our community dinners, I hope you took a moment to reflect on where the meal started.

The American rancher and farmer are here for you every day. Regardless of the weather or the economy or presidential elections, our family producers continue to grow commodities that keep our bellies full and our bodies warm.

Community Agriculture Alliance has made a commitment to recognize the value of agriculture. Since 1999, this organization has worked hard to preserve the agricultural heritage of the Yampa Valley by initiating, supporting and encouraging actions, programs and policies that mutually benefit and connect agricultural, business and resort interests.

We strive to enhance and promote local agriculture: food, fiber, products and services. We provide education about the critical importance of agriculture. We serve as an ag-resource connector between the community and other agriculture organizations.

But who are we? Who plans and implements? Who evaluates?

Meet our 2017 board of directors: Bill Badaracca, Greg Brown, Adele Carlson, Donna Mae Hoots, Jenna Keller, Ren Martyn, Lore Marvin, Erika Murphy, Kelly Romero-Heaney, Kent Sandstedt, Brian Smith, Ryan Wattles, Joella West and Shiloh Whaley. Next year’s board of advisors will be Shine Atha, Jody Camilletti, Jia Carroll, Christina Gumbiner, Chris Hamilton, Cari Hermacinski, Jeannie Maneotis, Karen Massey, Whitney Neelis, Chayla Rowley, Chad Stewart, Nadia Tereschenko and Rich Tremaine. Jenna and Ryan will serve as our co-chairs, Kent as secretary and Bill as treasurer.

These 27 people come from all different vocations and interests but they share one common passion — agriculture. All of them understand the importance of production agriculture and consumer relationships. They treasure the heritage of Routt County but understand that to succeed, we must adapt for the future. They provide planning and implementation for the variety of programs hosted by Community Agriculture Alliance, and true to the agriculture work ethic, you also find them carrying supplies, setting chairs and taking registrations at our events.

As 2016 ends, we sadly said goodbye to Adonna Allen, Diane Holly, Brandon Moore and Liz Wahl. We will miss their wisdom and “can-do” attitudes but thank them for their service to Community Agriculture Alliance.

Now we look forward to a new year. In partnership with many organizations and businesses, we will continue moving the needle on local food issues doing our best to connect local producers with local markets.

The CAA online food market and Yampavore program are growing. Education about water issues is a priority for us. During Ag Appreciation Week in March we will be reminding everyone that without agriculture we would all be naked and hungry. Cayuse Classic Horse Show Series will be in June and September. There will be ranch tours and ag-based events.

The future for Community Agriculture Alliance is bright. Feel free to stop by our office at 141 Ninth St., call us at 970-879-4370 or visit our website at communityagalliance.org — we look forward to visiting with you.

Marsha Daughenbaugh is executive director of Community Agriculture Alliance.


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