As the statewide Farmland Navigator, Silvia works with BIPOC farmers as a coach, advocate and resource finder throughout their journey to get on land.
Silvia’s desire to see a more just food system has led her to work for nonprofits that dedicate their work to supporting small family farmers. Silvia strongly believes that one of the key components to achieving a more equitable and sustainable food system is advocating for the success of our local farmers. As a former co-owner of Nature’s Fountain Farm in Albany, she is fully aware of the many struggles and barriers small farmers face daily to do the work they feel passionate about.
Her deep love of local food systems comes from her experiences as a child growing up in Mexico with parents who cultivated the land out of love for growing food and taking care of the land, but mostly out of necessity to provide food for their family. The wonderful memories of enjoying a melon right off the vine or a ripe fruit off the tree, the magical tasty dishes her mother would produce with fresh ingredients gathered from the fields, was an experience like no other. Silvia immigrated to the U.S. in her teens and her childhood inspired her to pursue farming later in life in order to provide her family with the experience of having access to fresh delicious food like she did growing up.
Silvia’s experience as a farmer, local food advocate and farmer business coach within the Latinx community makes her a great asset to the Oregon Farm Link team.
Christina supports farmers who are looking to grow into new land in the Willamette Valley. Christina has worked on diverse farm operations across the US, and currently owns and operates a small urban farm in Springfield, Oregon. She serves on the board of Huerto de la Familia and as part of the leadership team of the Oregon Community Food Systems Network. In previous lives, she has worked as a program coordinator / manager / director for other food system nonprofits, city government and schools, and hopes to be a very good house cat in a future life. Her husband and two dogs provide excellent company hiking, biking and rafting across Oregon.
Natalie is a Co-Director of Friends of Family Farmers and manages the Oregon Farm Link program. She is a passionate advocate for Oregon’s small and mid-scale farmers across the state and seeks to foster opportunity for viable and equitable pathways to land tenure for the next generation of farmers with the Oregon Farm Link program. Natalie has a background in non-profit work and you can often find her crunching numbers and creating systems to keep the organization operating at full capacity. Natalie grew up in Oregon and spent much of her time on horseback, competing in 4-H and high school equestrian team, helping her family grow and preserve food, and camping. After graduating from Oregon State University, Natalie moved east to Central Oregon where she became increasingly involved with the local food system before joining FoFF in 2018. In her free time Natalie enjoys all things outdoors with her partner and their dog Lida as well as gardening and cooking delicious food.