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Staff, Board, and FairShare farmers group photo

ABOUT US

Abou FairShare

WHAT WE DO

We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization based in Madison, Wisconsin and serving the Midwest region. Our mission is to build resilient food communities by investing in farmers and empowering eaters.

 

We envision thriving farms, vibrant communities, and fresh food for all!

CORE PROGRAM AREAS

Image of a country road passing through fields

WHO WE ARE

Fairshare staff

Clare

Executive Director

Clare was drawn to Madison because of its vibrant local food community, moving here in 2001 to study Biology at UW. She has a passion for building just, sustainable food systems. She could not be more excited to continue this work through FairShare, and to be part of an organization with such a rich history and meaningful impact. Prior to this role, Clare co-founded and scaled Quince & Apple, a small-batch food company that makes accompaniments for Wisconsin’s amazing artisan cheeses. She has also contributed as a board member, volunteer and supporter of several local sustainable agriculture and racial justice organizations.

Liv

Program Director

Liv’s journey with food has followed her around the country (and beyond); from exploring the farmers market as a child in San Francisco, working on an organic farm in Germany, reviewing her college’s food waste system in Massachusetts, to working on an urban farm and assisting with farm classes for Tilth Alliance, in Seattle. She enjoys cooking new food, and has always looked to her CSA shares and ever-expanding home garden for inspiration. She sees an equitable and sustainable food system as a central component to our environmental and social well being, and is excited to promote that work with FairShare. 

Tess

Communications & Development Manager 

Tess is thrilled to bring her passion for local food systems to FairShare as Communications & Development Manager. Her previous experiences- from an urban farm in Iowa to a permaculture acreage in India- have helped shape her belief that access to sustainably grown, culturally appropriate foods are crucial to creating a just and equitable food system. She loves growing and cooking her own food, and is excited to call Madison home again after receiving her Master’s of Food & Agriculture Law and Policy from Vermont Law School. 

Sadie

Network Coordinator

Sara “Sadie” Willis sought out courses in ecology, environmental science, botany, natural resources, land preservation and ethics in her Biology program, before working in the health-tech industry. After honing coordination and networking skills in the corporate world, making a career shift to FairShare felt like returning to her roots. An avid gardener who makes homegrown produce into preserves for local farmers' markets, Sadie savors time spent in nature and making connections with people who love food. She is an enthusiastic home chef who adores seasonal, sustainable eating. Sadie is excited to nurture FairShare’s relationships with CSA producers doing innovative work in creating accessible, equitable, and resilient food systems.

Beth

Ohio Program Manager

Beth is the Ohio Program Manager, and brings experience from multiple segments of the food system: organic CSA farmer, farmers’ market manager, food business owner, and food systems advocate and network coordinator. She has a passion for making good food accessible to people of all income levels, backgrounds, and life experiences while supporting farm viability. Throughout her career she has implemented programs simultaneously achieving these goals, and has actively advocated for policies that support these efforts at the local, state, and national level. Her downtime is often spent hiking in the woods, cooking heirloom beans, or making pie with seasonal fruit.

Caroline

Administrative Coordinator

Caroline is excited to continue to support local organic food access in the Madison community and beyond in this role. She grew up in Richmond, Virginia and studied Biology and Math at the College of William & Mary with a focus on plant science and ecology. During undergrad, Caroline participated in her first CSA and had the opportunity to take a Sustainability & Agriculture class with the farmer - she’s been a CSA enthusiast ever since! She has food system experience in Madison from her two full seasons on the farm crew at FairShare endorsed Crossroads Community Farm, her horticultural and research roles at UW-Madison for the Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program, and as an EBT Collections Assistant for the Dane County Farmers’ Market. When she isn’t cooking or eating local food, Caroline is probably outside birding, identifying plants, kayaking, or XC skiing, depending on the season. 

Chiang Rai

Aggregation Coordinator

The son of HMoob (Hmong) immigrants, Chiang Rai grew up around small-scale farming and selling his family’s produce at farmers’ markets around Northeast Wisconsin. Having experienced the challenges of being a grower from an underserved population, he is excited and proud to be part of FairShare’s work in providing support to underserved growers, especially HMoob growers, through the Aggregation Coordinator position. In his free time, he loves to go outdoors and enjoy nature by playing disc golf!

Sam bio picture

Apprenticeship Manager

Sam (he/they) works to ground himself in liberation, care and curiosity to build a world where everyone has what they need and where we gather over delicious food. As Apprenticeship Manager, Sam looks forward to supporting our grower community while cultivating sustainable/sustaining food systems and educational pathways for learners. Sam has worked in education and programming, and has been a grower/co-operator of Jumping Spider Farm (at the Farley Center), a small organic vegetable operation which has supported him to grow veggies important to his Taiwanese ancestry, learn from our grower communities, and connect with other queer / trans / BIPOC farmers and earth tenders. Outside of this role, Sam is taking carpentry classes and co-organizing a BIPOC Queer Farmer Convergence, while also enjoying walks with their friends, partner and sweet little dog Ramona. 

Levi

Program Intern

Levi is thrilled to join the FairShare team as a Program Intern with Partner Shares.  With a background in Nordic Studies at Luther College, Levi geeks out about the social support structures and the values that can lay the foundation for equitable, caring communities.  They look forward to helping people with their applications and processing payments to ensure people who want access to fresh local food or support local farms can do so.  This fall, Levi will help out with planning and organizing FairShare’s Bike the Barns event as well!  In their free time, Levi enjoys going birding or a trip to the local library or coffee shop.

COLLABORATIVE POSITIONS WITH UW EXTENSION

Sarah

Diversified Vegetable Educator - Dane County

Sarah (she/her) is the Diversified Vegetable Educator for Dane County Extension, working in close partnership with FairShare CSA Coalition. She holds a Ph.D. in Environment & Resources from UW-Madison, where her research delved into the practices and conditions fostering positive labor experiences for diversified vegetable farmers locally and nationwide. Passionate about fostering peer-to-peer learning environments, Sarah works closely with farm workers and owners alike. Beyond her professional endeavors, Sarah enjoys outdoor adventures like hiking, paddle boarding, reading, and spending time with loved ones.

Emilee bio picture

Diversified Vegetable Educator - Milwaukee Metro

Emilee is excited to be supporting small-scale vegetable growers through her role with UW Extension and close partnership with FairShare. She has a M.S. in Plant Breeding and Plant Genetics from UW Madison, and experience working in carrot, table beet, and Swiss chard breeding programs as well as hosting on-farm variety trials. In addition to her research experience, she has several seasons of experience working on small CSA farms in northern IL and Madison. Emilee is passionate about building relationships with diverse groups of growers to connect them with the latest research. Her goals are to help farms increase resilience, profitability, and sustainability in every sense of the word. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, and playing board games.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

CAROL RIDDERBUSCH

Board President

Senior Customer Success Manager, Advarra

Carol is a Senior Customer Success Manager at Advarra, a leader in clinical trial research management systems for research sites and academic medical centers. Before this role, Carol spent the previous 12 years at Healthgrades in data analytics and marketing strategy and execution for hospitals and health systems. In her free time, Carol loves to spend time outdoors, travel and explore local restaurants both in Madison and abroad.

SARAH LARSON

Board Treasurer

Acting Director, Food Finance Institute

Sarah is the Acting Director of the Food Finance Institute (FFI), part of UW System's Institute for Business & Entrepreneurship. FFI provides finance-focused training and technical assistance to growing food, farm and food systems enterprises. Prior to FFI, she spent time helping launch and grow food brands including Wisconsin Specialty Protein (WSP) and the  tera’swhey® brand, Death’s Door Spirits and Tribe 9 Foods. Additionally, Sarah managed the Wisconsin statewide AmeriCorps Farm to School Program at the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection and served as the Farm to Business Program Director at nonprofit REAP Food Group

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ROBYN CALVEY

Farmer, Park Ridge Organics

Born and raised in eastern Wisconsin, Robyn Calvey has been involved with Park Ridge Organics since its inception in 2003. She purchased the farm from her parents in 2015 and has grown it into a reputable and reliant market vegetable farm. It primarily sells through its CSA program but has also gained traction with local wholesale accounts over the years and continues to maintain a strong customer base at its on farm store. 

 

Robyn is an educator for the Becoming an Employer of Choice (BTEC) program for Farm Managers and actively serves as a Vegetable Farm Manager Apprentice Farm Educator. Robyn and her husband Brad and their daughter Frances live at the farm and enjoy travel when they can make it happen.  

LIZ GROSS

CEO of Campus Sonar

Liz is the CEO of Campus Sonar, a specialized social listening agency that partners with colleges and universities. She’s previously served as the Market Insights Manager and Social Media Strategist at Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation. Prior to joining Great Lakes, she was the Director of Marketing and Communications at the University of Wisconsin-Waukesha and Program Outreach Coordinator in University Housing at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

BEN JACKLE

Farmer, Mile Creek Farm

Ben is co-owner of Mile Creek Farm, a certified organic farm outside of Dayton, OH.  He has farmed for 17 years, 15 of those at Mile Creek Farm with his wife Emily. Over the years Mile Creek Farm has distributed produce through a 225 share CSA, at farmers markets, and to wholesale accounts. Since 2016 the farm has been part of the farmer owned and run coop, Great River Organics which sells produce throughout Ohio.

 

Since 2007 Ben has also been an active member of the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) serving on a number of advisory committees and on the board of directors. Recently Ben started working for the organic certification agency MOSA as a materials review specialist. 

RICK KLEMME

Executive Director, Cooperative Extension Services

Rick currently works as the Executive Director of the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy (ECOP works on behalf of Cooperative Extension Services across the country). He is a retired Director of Cooperative Extension at the University of Wisconsin-Extension. He was a faculty member in the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics at the UW-Madison and director of the UW-Madison’s Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems.

SCOTT LAESER

Farmer, Plowshares & Prairie Farm and Water Program Director, Clean Wisconsin

Scott owns and manages Plowshares & Prairie Farm with his wife Chelsea in Argyle, Wisconsin. Their produce farm, now in its fifth season, is focused on growing a diverse array of vegetables for their community supported agriculture program and a local farmer’s market, while minimizing runoff and nutrient loss from fields through use of cover crops, grass waterways, and restored wetlands and prairies.

Off the farm, Scott has worked for Clean Wisconsin, a Madison based environmental non profit organization, since 2015 and is primarily focused on water quality issues pertaining to agriculture. Scott has worked on water quality and environmental issues for over ten years, including stints with the Driftless Area Land Conservancy in Dodgeville, Wisconsin, and Trout Unlimited and the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership in Washington, DC.

SARAH LEONG

Farmer, Squashington Farm

Sarah is a first generation farmer originally from Fort Myers, FL. Along with her husband Pat, daughter Hazel, and wonderful farm team, she runs Squashington Farm in Mount Horeb, WI. They have a ~100-member CSA, serve a couple local markets and a couple local restaurants. She is passionate about eating, growing as many varieties as possible, and being a new mom. As a small business owner, Sarah has become a Jane of All Trades and Master of None making sure day-to-day operations flow smoothly, digital marketing keeps them current, engaging with customer bases, and staying innovative to keep their business growing steadily. 

AMBER MIDDLETON

Humane Educator, Dane County Humane Society

Amber is the Humane Educator at Dane County Humane Society, leading community education and outreach programming. Before this role, Amber spent most of her career working in the local food realm with the San Luis Local Foods Coalition, a nonprofit working to foster an equitable local food system in southern Colorado. She has experience in development, grant management, and supporting statewide coalitions. Amber has a Master's Degree in Public Administration and spends her free time exploring with her rescue dogs, Taffy and Roux, trying her hand at gardening, and volunteering with SoL Criations Farm Sanctuary.

Board Advisors

Megan

MEGAN COSTELLO

Senior Content Strategist, Morgridge Institute for Research

Megan has +10 years’ experience directing multi-channel communications to inspire and engage audiences. She started in legislative affairs and cut her teeth as the Assistant Dean for Communications in the College of Letters & Science, the largest college at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Megan is content strategist turned content marketer—in her current role at the Morgridge Institute for Research in Madison, Wisconsin, she manages integrated communications and directs fundraising campaigns to cultivate donors and inspire a culture of philanthropy.

Cheri

CHERI KING

Former Board Treasurer

Manager, RSM

Cheri is a CPA with 10+ years experience as a tax accountant, and is a Tax Manager in the Madison office for RSM US LLP. She started her tax career at a small CPA office in Menomonie, Wisconsin. Prior to her move to RSM US LLP (a.k.a. McGladrey), she worked as a Senior Tax Consultant for Badgerland Financial (now part of Compeer Financial).

Interested in Joining the FairShare Board of Directors?

Directors serve 3-year terms and provide strategic leadership and oversight for the organization. Directors attend board meetings (6 per year), serve on a committee (monthly), participate in organizational decision-making, volunteer at 1-2 events per year, and provide financial support as able. Our Directors are passionate about providing our communities with fresh, local, organic produce through farmer relationships by putting their skills to use in supporting FairShare staff and organizational growth.

 

FairShare is committed to equity through practice, policy, and programming, and we are actively seeking to diversify the membership of our Board to represent more of the communities we serve. We specifically encourage BIPOC and LGBTQ+ individuals, as well as people from low-income households, to explore opportunities to serve on the board of directors.

 

Sponsorship-Focused Director Opportunity

We have a need for a Director with a strong background in B2B marketing or sales. You will serve on our Development Committee, and provide guidance and assistance in securing corporate and organizational sponsorships for major events and annual support. You may be a great fit for this role if you’ve led a marketing team, sold advertising or services to mid-size businesses, or made sponsorship decisions for your own company.

 

If you are interested in serving FairShare in this capacity, please submit a brief statement of interest and summary of your relevant experience to Carol Ridderbusch, FairShare Board President, at board@csacoalition.org.

Fundraising-Focused Director Opportunity

We have a need for a Director with a background in fundraising; particularly in leadership-level annual giving and stewardship. You will serve on our Development Committee, and provide guidance and assistance in stewarding our major donors and cultivating additional leadership-level gifts. FairShare is a largely grant-funded organization, and over the last few years we’ve significantly increased the number of donors and dollars raised from individuals. You will help us continue that progress by cultivating leadership-level annual donors. You may be a great fit for this role if you’ve led annual giving for a non-profit, worked as a gift officer or development director, or chaired a fundraising campaign.
 

If you are interested in serving FairShare in this capacity, please submit a brief statement of interest and summary of your relevant experience to Clare Stoner Fehsenfeld, Executive Director, at clare@csacoalition.org.

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