WAgN is one of 30 organizations participating in a historic summit aimed at changing the face of leadership in sustainable agriculture. The three-day “Cultivate 2012″ event will engage 30 leading women activists, thinkers, policy-makers and organizers in an effort to discuss national food security issues and provide cohesive strategies for expanding and enhancing the sustainable agriculture movement, healthy food and farming in the US.
“I am excited to represent WAgN at this new national effort to support and strengthen the leadership role of women in transforming our food system, ” says Beth Holtzman, Outreach Coordinator for the WAgN.
Beth will be joining an impressive group of emerging leaders, distinguished authors, USDA members, leaders of national agriculture organizations, policy analysts, organic food farmers and established researchers–all of whom, together in one room, have a historic opportunity to make a huge impact on the current and future national food system.
The event, May 23-25, is sponsored by the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES), Women, Food and Agriculture Network (WFAN), and The White House Project (TWHP),
Women are the critical driving force behind our agricultural industry. They are the core decision-makers in household food consumption and preparation, the fastest-growing demographic to own and operate sustainable farms, and the largest percentage of nonprofit employees supporting the healthy food and farming movement. A growing number of women are embarking on a collaborative dialogue to increase their influence as leaders in the sustainable food and farming movement.
Lisa Kivirist, director of the Rural Women’s Project of the Midwest Organic & Sustainable Education Service and a Wisconsin farmer says, ”The cross-pollination opportunities through networking and the sharing of ideas and resources will boost this movement and the leadership role women can play.”
“Our goal is to bring together the most creative, passionate women working on sustainable ag issues in the country, to craft a strategy for making our voices more widely heard,” says Leigh Adcock, Executive Director of Women Food and Agriculture Network. “We will identify common policy goals that we can communicate at all levels, from the farmers’ market to the halls of Congress.”
With women in the US leading the largest growth sector in US agriculture, as well as leading the explosion of healthy food and farming initiatives at every level, an important goal of the conference is to acknowledge, celebrate, and bring attention to the immense efforts of these women.
“We are bringing together an extremely diverse group of visionary women and we are totally committed to coming out of this historic gathering with actionable items. I believe we will find ways to ratchet up women’s impact on policy and elections in 2012, shine a spotlight on the women who are already leading in this movement, and talk about how we can cultivate leadership in the huge and growing pipeline of young women in this movement,” says Liz Johnson, National Rural Program Director for The White House Project.
Cultivate 2012 is born of the collaborative efforts of The White House Project, the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES), and the Women, Food and Agriculture Network (WFAN), in coordination with The Johnson Foundation.
About The White House Project:
The White House Project is a non-profit organization which aims to advance women’s leadership in all communities and sectors—up to the U.S. presidency—by filling the leadership pipeline with a richly diverse, critical mass of women.
About Women’s Food and Agriculture Network:
The Women’s Food and Agriculture Network mission is to link and empower women to build food systems and communities that are healthy, just, sustainable, and that promote environmental integrity.
About Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service:
The Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) serves farmers striving to produce high-quality, healthful food using organic and sustainable techniques. These farmers produce more than just food; they support thriving ecosystems and vibrant rural communities.