Meet Jessie Maier: A CCOF Foundation Future Organic Farmer

The Future Organic Farmer Grant winners were judged to have the strongest combination of commitment to leading a lifelong career in organic agriculture, investment and participation in the organic community, and dedication to growing the organic movement. Each grant recipient will receive $5,000 to apply toward their studies in organic agriculture. 

Find out how to apply for your own Future Organic Farmer Grant.

Learn more about supporting the Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund through a donation.

Jessie Maier
Rogue Farm Corps FarmsNext Internship Program – Oregon

In 2012 Jessie graduated from Ohio State University (OSU) with a degree in animal science. Jessie grew up in the suburbs, so in order to get more experience in agriculture, she worked at OSU's beef and sheep operation and as a research assistant in ruminant nutrition. Subsequently, she volunteered at OSU’s student vegetable farm, an aquaculture lab, and at Stratford Ecological Center, an educational organic farm, and took OSU’s course in management-intensive grazing. After these experiences, Jessie knew her passion lay in sustainable agriculture. She loves that animals can be raised in a way that restores the land and keeps artificial inputs low.

After graduating from OSU, Jessie spent two years in Senegal, West Africa, as a Peace Corps sustainable agriculture extension agent. She witnessed first-hand the effects of overgrazing, the misuse (and overuse) of fertilizer and chemical pesticides, and how increased deforestation was leading to desertification. Now she is working on completing the Rogue Farm Corps FarmsNext program at Deck Family Farm—a 320-acre pasture-based producer of meat, eggs, sheep, and dairy products. This internship will give her the hands-on experience and knowledge she needs to one day run her own seasonal, pasture-based dairy operation.

Congratulations Jessie!

Please join us in congratulating the vocational and higher education recipients of the CCOF Foundation’s 2015 Future Organic Farmer Grants.

The Future Organic Farmer Grant Fund is made possible by the generous support of the Clif Bar Family Foundation, Driscoll’s, National Co+op Grocers, Organic Valley, Lauren and Eric Schiermeyer, and the UNFI Foundation. Thank you to these organizations for helping us inspire the next generation of organic farmers!