Meet the CCOF Staff

My day starts with a bike ride along Santa Cruz's foggy coastline.
 
At the CCOF home office, Erica and Lucia say hello as I walk my bike into our open office space. I pass the policy and marketing teams who joke with one another as they prepare for their morning meetings. I smile at the office dogs who look up to see if I might give them a little attention.  
 
I put my bike away and note the pictures of smiling grantees from our Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund. They stand in a colorful organic flower field at the University of California, Santa Cruz farm, which served as a training ground for several CCOF employees. 
 
I head to the kitchen and overhear Val discussing livestock standards with remote coworkers who conference in from different time zones. I listen to another staff member fluently explain forms to a Spanish-speaking farmer and to yet another staff member who asks her coworker for help on a difficult label review. 
 
In the kitchen, coworkers are sharing a loaf of locally-made organic bread. They are chatting about daycares and talking about items that they can borrow from one another for their family vacations. 
 
I head back to my office and see our food safety director Jacob collaborating with Meaghan, who runs the Foundation’s Organic Training Institute, on an upcoming training. I say hello to an inspection coordinator who is working at a desk designed by our operations manager Robert for visiting remote employees. 
 
Accounting and our People department team members are going for a morning walk break to the ocean overlook a couple blocks from the office. They will be back soon to field calls from producers who need help with payment plans or to work on programs that support our employees’ professional development. 
 
I am now writing this at the end of the day, and I am the last one left in the office. I will lock up and then cruise back along the coast just in time for another beautiful Santa Cruz sunset. Today, I leave the office filled with gratitude after reading the feature article by Ellen Vessels in the fall issue of Certified Organic highlighting some CCOF staff members. With a few personal stories, Ellen managed to capture the skill, passion, and determination of our staff who, in turn, provide organic producers with the personable, reliable services that they deserve. 
 
Read more in the Fall 2019 edition of Certified Organic.

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