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Visionaries in the Field: Weaving Together Ecology and Equity

In the spirit of this year’s conference theme of "20/20 Vision," we are hosting visionaries in the fields of ecology and equity. From its very beginnings, EcoFarm has been a platform for leading farmers, activists, and scientists to inspire us about the real world implications of the ecological and social aspects of sustainability. This year, our keynote speakers provide a vision for the future of agriculture based on scientific research and traditional knowledge. The time has come to make way for the bright future of regenerative farming, and construct a food system based on justice, dignity, and abundance for all.

Dr. Jonathan Lundgren

Transforming Science to Foster an Agricultural Revolution

We are currently living through the transformation toward a regenerative food production system, yet current agricultural science often hinders innovation instead of fueling it. In this keynote, we will discuss the science of pesticide risk assessment, and the bright future of regenerative farming as well as a new approach for conducting applied science that can fuel a revolution in food production.

 

Leah Penniman

Farming While Black: African Diasporic Wisdom for Farming and Food Justice

Some of our most cherished sustainable farming practices have roots in African wisdom. Yet, discrimination and violence against African-American farmers has led to our decline from 14 percent of all growers in 1920 to less than 2 percent today. Soul Fire Farm, cofounded by author, activist, and farmer Leah Penniman, is committed to ending racism and injustice in our food system. Leah will share how you too can be part of the movement for food sovereignty and help build a food system based on justice, dignity, and abundance for all members of our community.

Track and Session Info

Session: 
Keynote | 8:00 pm

Date and Location

Day: 
Wednesday
Presenter(s): 

Dr. Jonathan Lundgren

Title: 
Dr. Jonathan Lundgren
Presenter Affiliation: 
Founder and Director, Ecdysis Foundation
Bio: 
Dr. Jonathan Lundgren is an agroecologist, Director Ecdysis Foundation, and CEO for Blue Dasher Farm. He received his PhD in Entomology from the University of Illinois in 2004, and was a top scientist with USDA-ARS for 11 years. Lundgren received the Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering by the White House. Lundgren has served as an advisor for national grant panels and regulatory agencies on pesticide and GM crop risk assessments. Lundgren has written 126 peer-reviewed journal articles, several book chapters, authored the book “Relationships of Natural Enemies and Non-prey Foods”, and has received more than $6 million in grants. He has trained 5 post-docs and 14 graduate students from around the world. One of his priorities is to make science applicable to end-users, and he regularly interacts with the public and farmers regarding pest and farm management and insect biology. His ecological research focuses heavily on conserving healthy biological communities within agroecosystems by reducing disturbance and increasing biodiversity within cropland.

Leah Penniman

Title: 
Leah Penniman
Presenter Affiliation: 
Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director, Soul Fire Farm
Bio: 
Leah Penniman is a Black Kreyol educator, farmer/peyizan, author, and food justice activist from Soul Fire Farm in Grafton, NY. She co-founded Soul Fire Farm in 2011 with the mission to end racism in the food system and reclaim our ancestral connection to land. As co-Executive Director, Leah is part of a team that facilitates powerful food sovereignty programs - including farmer training for Black & Brown people, a subsidized farm food distribution program for communities living under food apartheid, and domestic and international organizing toward equity in the food system. Leah has been farming since 1996, holds an MA in Science Education and a BA in Environmental Science and International Development from Clark University, and is a Manye (Queen Mother) in Vodun. The work of Leah and Soul Fire Farm has been recognized by the Soros Racial Justice Fellowship, Fulbright Program, Grist 50, and the James Beard Award, among others. Her book, "Farming While Black: Soul Fire Farm's Practical Guide to Liberation on the Land" is a love song for the land and her people.  

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Thank you to our EcoFarm 2020 sponsors!