Our Team

CAE staff photo

Staff

  • Reeve Basom

    Education and Agriculture Coordinator

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    Reeve joined CAE’s community programs team in May 2016. Her background is in education, including six years of classroom teaching in VT public schools, a master’s degree in teaching, and a variety of leadership roles in programs focused on experiential food systems and outdoor education for youth. She relishes the creative, collaborative work of building school-community partnerships and falls more in love with her NEK homeland every day.

  • Kristin Blodgett

    Financial Manager

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    Kristin joined the Center for an Agricultural Economy in March 2015. She is a financial and project manager by training with seven years of experience supporting local and international community development programs. In the last several years her work has focused on a portfolio of USAID-funded agricultural and natural resource management programs in sub-Saharan Africa, during which time she also provided support to the UN FAO Committee on World Food Security through the negotiation of the international Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forests in the Context of National Food Security. Kristin is a native of Vermont and now lives in Burlington.

  • Martha Braithwaite

    Community Organizer

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    Martha Braithwaite joined the Center for an Agricultural Economy in January 2017. Martha was introduced to community organizing models as a college student in New Orleans, and she now has over fifteen years of experience in organizing and non-profit program management. Martha's organizing philosophy is rooted in popular education models and the belief that people are the true experts in their own lived experience.  Martha studied Public Policy and Economics at Mills College and has a Masters Degree in Business Administration with focus in Non-Profit Management and Social Enterprise from the Lorry I. Lokey Graduate School of Business. Martha returned to West Glover, where she was born and raised, in 2008 after spending time in New Orleans, Louisiana and Oakland, California.

  • Bethany Dunbar

    Community Programs Manager

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    Bethany M. Dunbar came to the Center for an Agricultural Economy in April 2014, and manages all the community projects, overseeing staff and contractors. She grew up in Craftsbury and studied education at Lyndon State College and has a background dairy farming, journalism and photography.  At the Chronicle, a weekly newspaper in Barton, she was Managing Editor, covering agriculture, the local food movement, and human interest profiles.  She has won numerous awards for news writing and photography.  In 2012 her first book, Kingdom's Bounty, was published by Umbrage Editions.  It is a series of essays and photographs of farmers and food providers in Northeastern Vermont and serves as a guidebook.  She lives on a back road in West Glover and loves gardening, cooking, hiking, and horseback riding. 

  • Kyle Gilbert

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    Kyle Gilbert is the Production Manager for the Farm to Institution Program. Kyle first came to the CAE in August 2012 to help a friend make BBQ sauce…and then she just wouldn’t leave! We’ve been creating positions for her ever since. We know that she loves to travel internationally, she appreciates great food and is an amazing cook, and that her commitment to a sustainable and just food system is strong. Other than that, your guess is as good as ours.

     

  • Connor Gorham

    Facilities Manager

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    Connor Gorham, of Rochester, NH, has worked for the CAE/VFVC since May of 2011. He has a BA in Culinary Arts from the New England Culinary Institute and has a passion for food that only few can match. Connor has worked in fine dining and food manufacturing and currently oversees the daily operations of the food business incubation and facility management at VFVC. He is Better Process Control certified, and is a ServSafe Instructor and Test Proctor. Connor has had a vision of working with food businesses and entrepreneurs for several years now and feels that he is living out his dream each and every day. Connor lives in Lamoille County and enjoys playing basketball, hitting the slopes, and spending time with his dog Bert.

  • Daniel Keeney

    Farm and Food Business Advisor

    Daniel Keeney started with the CAE in December 2014 and is a St. Johnsbury, VT native. He completed his Masters’ Program in Community Development and Applied Economics at UVM, focusing on potential market demand in emerging agricultural markets, particularly for compost. He has worked with several Vermont farmers, in on-farm production and maintenance as well as direct market sales and delivery. He has worked at Montpelier’s Hunger Mountain Co-op in cheese sales, and he continues to work part-time as a junior partner at Dunc’s Mill Artisanal Rums in Barnet, VT. He lives in Maple Corner, growing food, cooking food and singing to his cat.

  • Lylee Rauch-Kacenski

    Co-Marketing Coordinator

    Lylee joined CAE’s Business Services team in September 2017. While she prides herself on being a generalist of many subjects, Lylee has focused the past decade on community and local food systems. Her background includes a degree in visual arts and work as varied as graphic designer, small business owner, art educator, researcher, retreat center chef, gardener, and baker. Most recently, Lylee completed a Master’s Degree in Urban Planning and Policy at Tufts University, where she focused on community engagement and economic development. Lylee lives in Bethel, and is involved in the Bethel Revitalization Initiative, a community led group that is using innovative ideas and creativity to enliven and revive the town. She shows her love by cooking for people and can often be found in the kitchen, out on a hike, or cuddling with her dog.

  • Charlotte (Lotty) Roozekrans

    Farm to Institution Accounts Manager

    Lotty joined the CAE in October of 2017 as the new Farm to Institution Accounts Manager. She comes to CAE with extensive experience working in farmers market management, as well as many years of experience working in the the hospitality industry. She is deeply committed to supporting the VT farming community and by working with the Just Cut product line of minimally processed produce, she is able to do just this, while also supplying K-12, colleges and hospitals with fresh and nutritious food. Lotty lives in Lamoille County and enjoys walking local trails and nearby dirt roads, and when the snow flies; cross country skiing and snowboarding and knitting.

  • Sarah Waring

    Executive Director

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    Prior to joining the Center for an Agricultural Economy in February 2013, Sarah Waring served as Program Director for the Farm & Wilderness Foundation, Program Director for Vt Council on Rural Development’s Council on the Future of Vermont, and Program Coordinator at the Sonoran Institute in Bozeman, MT. She currently serves on the Boards of the NEK Collaborative and the Farm to Institution Network Advisory Council. She has worked in the non-profit world in conservation, land use planning, and rural development, as well as for the Bureau of Land Management in Washington, DC. Born and raised in Glover, Vermont, Sarah earned her B.A. from Haverford College, and her M.A.A. from the University of Maryland. She lives in East Montpelier with her family and cat.

Board of Directors

  • Paul Costello

    Vermont Council on Rural Development

    Paul Costello grew up in Burlington next to the cemetery where Ethan Allen is buried. He's the son of Judge Edward J. Costello from Rutland and Dorothy Wimett of Pittford. After obtaining a BA in Psychology he worked for several years in human services then as a carpenter and rural jack of all trades living in Fairfield while he earned a PhD in intellectual history from McGill. Paul has served as the Executive Director of the Vermont Council on Rural Development since 2000. Paul believes that the Vermont working landscape is crucial to the future success of rural communities, to our sustainability as a state, and to the model Vermont offers to other parts of the country and world for creative and balanced rural development.

  • Matthew Derr

    Sterling College

    A community organizer, teacher, fundraiser, and strategic planner, Matthew Derr was inaugurated in 2012 as the eleventh president of Sterling College. Matthew is nationally recognized in higher education for his expertise in leading institutional change and for strengthening mission-based focus. In 2011, he was awarded Chief Executive of the Year by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE). At Sterling, President Derr led the effort to divest the Sterling endowment from fossil fuels and become only the third college in the United States to do so. After completion of a collaborative strategic planning process, President Derr directed the largest fundraising campaign in Sterling’s history, Nourish the Roots, and secured the institution’s first seven figure gifts. Among the early accomplishments of the campaign was the naming and completion of capital projects for the Rian Fried Center for Sustainable Agriculture & Food Systems. Unusually for a college president today, Matthew also fulfills a role as a faculty member and regularly teaches courses in community organizing.

  • Tom Gilbert

    Black Dirt Farm

    Tom and his family, along with a stellar crew, own and operate Black Dirt Farm in Stannard. Black Dirt Farm is managed regeneratively to support its long term ecological health and productivity. Community food scraps, laying hens, compost, vermiculture, and other farm products are available. Black Dirt also provides complimentary compost services to Lakeview Elementary, Four Seasons Early Learning, and the Towns of Greensboro and Stannard.

  • Pete Johnson

    Pete’s Greens

    Pete started Pete’s Greens in 1995 growing primarily salad greens. He started gardening at a very early age and had his own thriving pumpkin business at the age of twelve. He now grows specialty vegetables of many types with an emphasis on baby greens, heirloom tomatoes, and root crops. Pete and his team sell to stores and restaurants throughout Vermont, as well as Boston and New York City. Recently he has focused on local sales direct to customers. In addition, Pete buys products from other farmers and producers and markets them through his “Localvore” Community Supported Agriculture shares.

  • Andy Kehler

    Jasper Hill Farm/Cellars at Jasper Hill

    Andy Kehler and his brother Mateo and their families have milked cows and made award-winning artisan cheese since 2002. They have also built a business model and infrastructure to age and market the cheese from other Vermont producers. The goals are both focused and broad: to produce cheeses of the highest quality from their own milk; to demonstrate that it is still possible to prosper on a rocky hillside farm; to create a vehicle for the renewal of the local dairy economy in the form of a business model that can be replicated on other dairy farms.

  • Emily Maclure

    Craftsbury General Store

    Emily bought the Craftsbury General Store two years ago after a decade long career in restaurant management and event planning in Los Angeles. Inspired by the community’s willingness to try new things, Emily pushed the envelope and expanded her grocery offerings to include an array of locally made products, as well as produce and meats from the store’s neighboring farms. With the help of her fun loving staff, the store and deli business continues to grow. A natural “people person,” Emily has loved becoming part of the Craftsbury community. She is an active member of the Craftsbury Planning Commission, and recently created a platform in which to bring the Craftsbury businesses together.

  • Linda Markin

    Vermont Community Loan Fund

    Linda Markin got her start in high finance doing payroll for an apple orchard in Vershire, Vermont. She was too short to command a reasonable piece rate picking apples and found she was better suited to indoor work with numbers. Currently she serves as Director of Finance and Administration at the Vermont Community Loan Fund. Previously she was the CFO at Concept2, Inc. She has a BA from Dartmouth College, and received post-graduate training in finance and administration at St. Michael's College and the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. Linda has a strong commitment to issues of social and economic justice and has been involved in organizations with social change missions since the mid 1980's. Currently she applies her business skills for CAE as Treasurer of the board and leads the Finance Committee for Vermont Works for Women. She lives in Hardwick, VT with her wife Marie, where she enjoys cycling, cross-country skiing, hiking and making connections between people who together can make a positive difference in the world.

  • Andrew Meyer

    Vermont Soy & Vermont Natural Coatings

    The Vermont Soy Company had its first incarnation in 1996, when Todd Pinkham began making tempeh. In 2007, Andrew Meyer and Todd began making products again and have now brought VT Soy to a whole new level, with state-of-the-art equipment and facilities and the ability to market more products to more places. In 2006, Andrew began Vermont Natural Coatings. The company’s patented natural wood finish formula is an important advance over existing water-based finishes in application, quality, and environmental safety. The formulations use whey protein as the bonding agent. Whey is a renewable resource and a natural by-product of the dairy industry. This use of a natural product in the professional finishes translates to low VOCs (volatile organic compounds) – and better in-door air quality. Their market is green builders and LEED contractors as well as individual homeowners. Andrew’s family has an organic dairy farm in Hardwick and after being raised in VT he worked in D.C. as the agricultural advisor to Senator Jeffords for 7 years.

  • Margie Prevot

    Board

    Margie and Roger moved to E. Hardwick in 2016, but have deep roots in the NEK. Nearly three decades ago, they met and married here, and their children attended Burke Mtn Academy as they grew.

    Besides the NEK, Margie and her family lived on a small farm in rural south central PA with three kids, gardens and a small flock of sheep and other critters. After managing the family, and shuttling back and forth between Burke and PA, Margie now officially works in a family business. Her daughter Corinne, an entrepreneur and small business owner of Skida Hats and Headwear in Burlington VT (www.skida.com), works with her mom as financial manager and back-office jill-of-all-trades. Skida apparel are proudly made in the NEK, so Margie also manages some production and delivery. Her other children, Nick and Mitch have followed their passions as a wilderness guide and a finance officer.

    She attributes her focus on farms and food to her father; a life long gardener. The vitality of local farms and local food resonates most uniquely for her in the NEK.

  • Jon Ramsay

    Vermont Land Trust

    Jon grew up on his family’s dairy farm located in Greensboro. Jon continues to manage the farm, now raising Black Angus cattle for both breeding stock and beef, and pastured poultry. Jon is the Director of the Farmland Access Program at the Vermont Land Trust (VLT), focusing on farm affordability for new and beginning farmers statewide. Prior to becoming the Director of the Farmland Access Program Jon worked in VLT’s stewardship program as an intern in 1998 and was hired fulltime June of 1999. Jon continued to work in stewardship at VLT until 2001 when he became the Agricultural Project Manager for VLT in the Champlain Valley office. Between 2006 and 2009 he was VLT’s Agricultural Stewardship Manager working statewide. Jon graduated from the University of Vermont in May 1999 with a B.S. degree in Natural Resources Ecology. Jon, his wife Selina and their son Jin live on the family farm, where they enjoy gardening, walking trips to Long Pond and enjoying Caspian Lake during the summer.