Meet Our Awesome 2020 Staff
During this unusual season without our valued volunteers, we are especially grateful to have a strong, experienced staff. Our farm staff has a total of 42 years of combined farming experience with Doug Wolcik, Hannah Lawson, and Kim Schmidt returning from last year and Kari Bender, Stacy Entel, Anna Kelchlin, and Max Spurlin joining from other farms. In the office, Jennifer Johnson, Allison Goodwin, and Fan Watkinson are leveraging years of nonprofit administration in coordination with the board of directors.
A mechanical engineer by training, Kari is enthusiastic about solving real world problems and passionate about the environment, equality, and empathy. After exploring pasture raised farming of animals at Codman Community Farms, she is now interested to experience no-till farming methods to grow produce for hunger relief.
Stacy is entering her fifth season of farming, after growing with the Neighborhood Farm and the Farm School. As a former elementary school educator, she is excited to share the joys of growing with future volunteers. Stacy loves flower-drunk honeybees and nerding out about carbon sequestration. She also enjoys volleyball, hiking, and baking, and will politely befriend any cat she meets.
Formerly administrative assistant for all things fundraising, Allison is expanding her role this year to coordinate our recipient partnerships and volunteer programs. She worked previously at Chelsea Green Publishing in Vermont, has worked on several organic farms in the US and abroad, and holds a degree in environmental studies.
Jennifer brings years of experience working with nonprofits in development and communications. Formerly commuting into Boston, she now enjoys biking to work and spending more time outdoors on the farm. Be sure to read the article welcoming her to Gaining Ground.
Anna believes in connecting people to the land through growing food and sharing the natural wonders of the earth. She is honored to be a part of the process of healing land and community in tandem with a regenerative mindset. She has worked for many years as an organic farmer at Waltham Fields Community Farm and has a background in farm-based education. Anna also studies and teaches Iyengar yoga and strives to empower others to live fully and feel peace.
Assistant Farm Manager and Volunteer Coordinator
Joining us for her fourth season, Hannah is a strong, deeply grounded farmer with a love of produce and flowers—and a real gift for scheduling our 2,500 annual volunteers. Hannah brings much educational experience from her previous job at The Trustees’ Appleton Farm in Hamilton.
This will be Kim’s third year sharing her expertise about food and farming with our staff and volunteers. A native of Kansas and Missouri, where she worked with youth and ran her own CSA farm, Kim enjoys camping and hiking in this part of the country and bakes wicked good pies.
Max is a recent Michigan transplant, entering his fifth season of farming. Formerly working on larger, tractor-based farms, he is excited to learn more about the world of no-till farming. If not at the farm, there’s a good chance he is reading, baking sourdough, playing hockey, or recording his weekly podcast with his brother.
An active member of the local agricultural community, Fan has overseen Gaining Ground’s programs since 2014 and is currently focusing on social media and online communications.
Now in his eighth season at Gaining Ground, Doug has been developing our no-till regenerative farming program and managing our farm staff to produce twice as much produce on the same amount of land. Doug has led workshops at the Northeast Organic Farmers Association (NOFA) conference, hosted farm tours for the Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training (CRAFT), and participated in a three-year research project on no-till farming practices and nutrient density of produce in conjunction with NOFA and the USDA.