Job Announcement
Farm Manager
Watsonville, CA
Full-Time Position
Position open until February 15, 2022
Farm Discovery at Live Earth
Farm to Fork, Seed to Mouth, Child to Community Connections

About Farm Discovery and Live Earth Farm:
Live Earth Farm, established in 1996, is a 150-acre diversified, organic, family farm overlooking the Pajaro Valley in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains in California. Live Earth runs a year-round CSA with over 800 members, growing over 50 different fruits and vegetables surrounded by a native landscape of redwoods and oak woodland. Produce is directly marketed through local farmer’s markets, restaurants, a thriving web store, and our weekly CSA program.

The education programs at Live Earth Farm began with the farm in 1996. Farm Discovery at Live Earth was formally established as a nonprofit organization in 2007 to compliment and expand the educational programs at Live Earth Farm. FD hosts more than 3500 children and families on the farm each year for farm based, hands-on learning opportunities through 9 different programs.

Farm Discovery has a consistent track record of solid financial standing, and we’re on a growth trajectory. We are now looking for a new person to join our team and take a leadership position in the fields to drive our farm and food programming forward into our next decade of work.

Position Description
We are looking for a highly motivated, detail-oriented and energetic person for this position of Farm Manager. This position will lead the farming and food programming, including a revamped apprentice program, a produce donation program begun during COVID and value added product program and support all education programs. This role is the primary organizer and leader for all youth farming components of our core programming. Farming components include managing the 1-3 acre education area, including Discovery Garden, Education Fields, small goatherd and chicken flocks, as well as coordinating with farm staff and volunteers to accomplish large seasonal projects. You should be ready to hit the ground running, implementing our existing crop plan and youth programming in your first year, with an eye toward farm and program development and innovation to take Farm Discovery to the next level shortly after.

We run seasonal field trips and Farm Immersions (April-June &Sept-Nov), a weekly immersive program (Sept-June), a monthly Home School program (Sept-June), drop-in programs (year-round), Farm Camps, Summer Leader in Training and job programs (June-July), two large annual community events, a partnership with Food What?! (March-Oct) and internship programs. This position will work in concert with our Assistant Director of Education, and Executive Director in the planning, implementation, evaluation and development of these core programs, taking leadership on the farm and food aspects. Additionally, this position will be instrumental in developing and implementing internships and value-added products.

This position requires a collaborative individual with a high level of organization and flexibility who has a few years of farming under their belt, is comfortable working with youth and in the kitchen. You will be a leader in our organization, a farmer and a youth educator. You are someone with farming, cooking and relationship building skills, who can engage and inspire the youth we serve about multiple aspects of the food system from production to consumption to food justice. You are approachable, a great communicator, and passionate about our mission. You get the big picture, while being a strategic thinker who can dive in and get the daily work done with a strong attention to detail. You’re playful, comfortable being you, and willing to share your personal magic with Farm Discovery students while creating safe space on the farm and in the kitchen.

Responsibilities:

  • Manage seasonal and day-to-day organic farming operations with ongoing coordination with Live Earth Farm production operations.
    • Lead and manage planning, propagation and greenhouse work, crop planning, planting and rotation, soil fertility, composting, perennial fruit tree and berry care, harvesting, post-harvest handling, irrigation, pest and disease control.
    • Manage goat heard and flocks of chickens through daily husbandry.
    • Maintain our new no-till plot for biointensive production
  • Farming and culinary curriculum creation, revision, and implementation for all programming.
  • Maintain order and cleanliness of education fields and garden, animal pens, sheds, education barn, kitchen classroom, and restroom.
  • Assist in leading education programs at the direction of or in collaboration with the Assistant Director of Education.
  • Develop and implement value-added product line. Involves managing relationships with local business partners and retailers, and production of specialty crops for product line.
  • Maintain existing, and create new, relationships with local chefs, coordinating their participation as summer camp guest chefs and chefs for our annual benefit.
  • Work with program and administration staff to accomplish big events including Sheep to Shawl Fair, Harvest Festival and Fall Feast in the Fields, as well as smaller community building and fundraising events (Supporter’s Picnic, Holiday Sip & Shop, Land Stewardship Workdays).
  • Direct the food aspects of four events, including annual benefit dinner. This includes menu creation with chefs, sourcing ingredients, and coordinating food day of.
  • Support implementation of fundraising and community events.
  • Participate in program evaluation (quantitative and qualitative).
  • Supervision of full and part-time staff, seasonal program staff, interns, and volunteers.

Required Qualifications:

  • At least 2-5 years of organic farming production including crop planning, greenhouse, irrigation, cultivation, pest and disease control, harvest and post-harvest handling, CSA/market, and cover crop experience. Farm and crew management experience strongly preferred.
  • Physically fit to meet the demands of working on farm with youth, experience and ability to dig beds by hand and with a BCS and the ability to lift 50 lbs.
  • Bilingual Spanish speaker.
  • Strong facilitation and group management skills, especially in an outdoor education setting.
  • Knowledge of and experience with low-income communities and underserved communities of color.
  • Passion for building community and deep relationships through food and agriculture.
  • Positive, creative, flexible, and takes initiative.
  • Ability to work independently, in team setting, and in fast-paced, dynamic environment.
  • Completes tasks successfully and within specified deadlines: demonstrates strong time management skills implementing programs on time and on budget.
  • Dependable with thorough follow through.
  • Ability to handle multiple programs/projects at once; strong organizational skills and attention to detail.
  • Good communication skills: verbal, written, electronic and with a variety of audiences.
  • Competent in use of computers and necessary technology on a daily basis; additional software experience a plus (salesforce, farm management tools, social media).
  • Utilizes and can exemplify tools or strategies for maintaining self-care and personal well-being.
  • Willingness to work non-traditional hours, including evenings and weekends as farm/programs demand.
  • Experience driving a tractor or a commitment to learning.
  • Valid California Driver’s license and vehicle for personal travel.

Preferred:

  • Cultural identity and lived experience relevant to the youth we serve.
  • Rooted in Santa Cruz County, particularly the Pajaro Valley.
  • Experience working with youth of all ages, infants through college age.
  • Significant cooking experience—catering experience a plus.

Position Details:
This is a 40-hour per week, full time position with paid vacation, sick time, and holidays and a Patagonia Pro Membership. A benefits stipend is provided. Salary $40,000+ commensurate with experience. In addition, the farm will provide produce and fresh eggs.

To Apply:
*Please fill in the following form: https://forms.gle/KDhbCza7PrTPsTnC8
the form will require the following two items to be uploaded within it:

  • A cover letter that shares the unique skills you bring to the table and includes the date or range of timing you are interested/available to start
  • A resume with at least two professional references

We will begin reviewing and accepting candidate material immediately.