Thanks to the overwhelming generosity of local citizens and local foundations, we have raised our start-up funds and the Local Food Hub will be opening this summer. We're now starting our annual campaign to raise the funding that we need to operate for the next year.
We have just officially hired our start-up team.
Founding Director – Kate Collier
Kate grew up on a farm in Fauquier County and brings extensive food industry experience to the project. At the young age of 11, she began rolling out shortbread dough in her mother’s hilltop bakery. Kate is a long-term supporter of the local food movement and an advocate for small farms and local food producers in Central Virginia. Her innovative perspective on the food industry, life-long experience in marketing, food sales, and distribution has helped bring success and profitability to her and her husband Eric's business, Feast!. Her strong relationships with local farmers, a keen business sense and an understanding of the issues facing small-scale food producers helps inform our vision and mission.
Farmer Services and Development Director – Marisa Vrooman
The daughter of a large animal veterinarian, Marisa is no stranger to the farm. She worked with her father for many years and spent much of her childhood visiting small, struggling farms in upstate New York. She has witnessed the decline of the family farm on a very personal scale, seeing her family members struggle to hold on to their land. She is convinced that in order to revive our rural economies, we must begin to revive our agricultural heritage. Her family currently has a small farm in Amherst, Virginia where they raise Maremma guard dogs, sheep and grow wine grapes.
Director of Operations – Alan Moore
Born and raised in tidewater Virginia, Alan and his young family have deep roots in Central Virginia. After graduating from UVA, he served as the Director of Operations for Jefferson Vineyards. After graduate school in Charleston, he helped found and served as the Program Director for Lowcountry Local First a non-profit organization working to revitalize the agricultural economy, environment, and community in the Lowcountry of South Carolina. He has an understanding of the many pressures faced by our local growers. His experience in developing entrepreneurial programs that promote economic development, preserve our agricultural heritage, and better connect our farms to our tables is an invaluable asset to the Local Food Hub.