Executive Director: Judith McGeary is an attorney, farmer, and activist. She has a B.S. in Biology from Stanford and a J.D. from the University of Texas at Austin. Following a clerkship with the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, she practiced as an attorney in administrative law and litigation. She and her husband began McGeary Ranch, a sustainable livestock farm, and she became a passionate advocate for sustainable agriculture. After seeing how government regulations benefit industrial agriculture at the expense of family farms, she left her legal practice to form the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance in 2006. Since then, Judith has spearheaded national coalitions fighting to stop the National Animal Identification System and to protect local foods. She currently serves as a voice for small and diversified farms on the USDA Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Animal Health.
Director of Development: A lifelong real food activist and now ag-tivist, Lindsay Gonzales brings 20 years experience in nonprofit fundraising and leadership to advocate for independent farmers and ranchers across the country. Born and raised in Houston, Lindsay pursued a Bachelor’s in ethics and public policy at Hampshire College, a Masters in ethics at Vanderbilt University and then took her passion to work for the common good to Washington DC where she worked in the legislature, politics and for multiple national level nonprofits. Returning to Texas to be with family, she now lives in a small town south of Houston, with a small banana orchard, just enough chickens, three dogs, two sons and her husband. Though she always cared about sustainable agriculture and healthy food systems, her work founding and organizing a local farmers market made the barriers in the current systems for producers and consumers more apparent than ever and she is passionate about bringing people together so we can create new food systems that will improve the health of individuals, communities, economies and the environment.
Communications & Outreach Director: Teresa Davenport returned to Texas to join CHFS in 2016, after 32 years on the East Coast where she was responsible for communications, marketing, and fundraising for several non-profits. She grew up in the Dallas area and received her bachelor’s in journalism from University of North Texas, then worked as a reporter and editor for the Tyler Morning Telegraph. It was during her most recent work at Morven Park, in Leesburg, Va., that she gained experience with issues of rural economic development, sustainable agriculture, and advocacy. Teresa received her master gardeners’ certification from Cornell University and was the founder and first president of the downtown revitalization program in a small New Jersey town where she resided for 20 years.
Program Manager: Shanna Crew joined CHFS in 2022 for this newly created position, ensuring the implementation and success of the Council’s growing agenda of educational programs. Shanna previously worked for Hope Farms, a non-profit urban ag and training center in Houston. As outreach coordinator, Shanna’s work encompassed everything from crop planning and record keeping to educational programming and market sales. She’s also gained acclaim as a mural and set design artist, and in the past has used her SCUBA diving skills at her jobs, including as a dive ops specialist at NASA’s Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory.
The Council for Healthy Food Systems (CHFS) and Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance (FARFA) jointly seek a part-time Communications Director to join our growing team amplifying our work in both advocacy and education.
CHFS is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that provides educational programs relating to diversified local and regional foods systems that are healthy, safe, economically sound, and environmentally sustainable. CHFS’ primary activities are:
- Hosting educational events for small-scale farmers to help them succeed with regenerative agricultural businesses. Current programs focus on soil health and on successful direct marketing of animal products.
- Providing education for consumers about sustainable agriculture, local foods, and the importance of systemic change.
- Co-hosting (along with FARFA and Texas State University) an annual conference, the Southern Family Farmers and Food Systems Conference.
FARFA is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit that promotes common-sense policies for local, diversified agricultural systems and advocates on behalf of the thousands of small-scale farmers and ranchers who produce food using sustainable and regenerative methods. FARFA’s primary activities are:
- Protecting small-scale food growers and producers from burdensome food safety laws.
- Encouraging grassroots activism nationwide for common-sense food and agricultural policies that support local food systems.
- Leading legislative efforts in Texas to reduce regulatory burdens on small farmers and improve access to local foods for consumers.
- Taking action to reverse the consolidation of our food system by large corporations.
The Communications Director will be tasked primarily with developing and disseminating information to farmers, local food businesses, and consumers about vital policy and educational issues. The Communications Director reports to the Executive Director and will play a pivotal role in helping both organizations grow our impact.
This position is part-time, estimated between 20-25 hours/week, working remotely. Weekly schedule is flexible; some weekend hours required.
We have a small, tightly-knit team that works cooperatively on all projects. Our Communications Director will take lead on the following aspects, with support as appropriate from our Executive Director, Development Director, and administrative assistant.
Public outreach: Develop messages and strategy for website, email, and social media platforms; develop materials for distribution at a range of venues, including farmers’ markets and other local food outlets, environmental events, sustainable farming events, and conventional farming events.
Inspiring action: Develop messages and strategy for engaging members and non-members in activism on issues such as reducing regulations on local food producers, providing for sustainable water sources for agriculture, and other focus issues.
Membership retention and development: Identify and recruit new members; retain current members and cultivate increasing involvement; develop and implement a communications plan for potential, existing, and lapsed members.
Volunteers: Recruit and coordinate volunteers to assist with the annual conference, special events, local outreach efforts (e.g. tables at farmers’ markets), and to provide support for specific projects (e.g. research on specific topics).
Event promotion and management: Play a key role in organizing our annual conference, annual fundraising dinner, citizens lobby days, and occasional local events. Responsible for publicity (designing promotional materials for web and print; promote event to appropriate audiences/communities and in relevant media) and organizing volunteers.
Media relations: Manage media relations, including drafting and sending press releases, pitching stories to TV and radio outlets, bloggers, and news sites in order to reach priority audiences.
Bachelor’s Degree – or equivalent experience – plus a minimum of two years’ experience in successful communications and/or marketing positions.
Excellent communication skills: written and verbal, over phone, email, and in person. In particular, must be excellent at written communications and proofreading.
Good at taking complex topics and explaining them to different audiences, including developing messages to explain to the audience why our mission matters to them.
Media relations experience and a history of media placement. Extra points for having established media contacts.
Experience managing social media and website for a nonprofit or small business.
Computer skills: proficient in Word, Excel, WordPress, and Photoshop/InDesign or similar software.
Work well as part of team, but also self-motivated and disciplined to work independently and remotely.
Good at juggling multiple projects while meeting deadlines and addressing projects in order of priority.
Additional characteristics – preferred candidates will also have:
Fluency in English and Spanish.
Personal or professional knowledge in sustainable agriculture, local foods, or related areas.
Community organizing and/or public policy experience.
HOURS, COMPENSATION, & BENEFITS
- Part-time position, estimated at 20-25 hours/week.
- Remote/home office (preference given to Texas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas applicants).
- Occasionally will need to work evenings or weekends for events.
- Flexible schedule.
- Hourly wage range is $20-$30/hour and is commensurate with experience. We are open to paying on a salary basis or hourly.
Note that both organizations are in a growth phase. The leadership of both organizations are seeking to grow revenue to such an extent within the next three years that there would be sufficient funds to increase both the hours and rates for all staff.
Please send resume, and cover letter to Judith@FarmAndRanchFreedom.org (include “Communications Director” in the subject line). Applications will be reviewed starting on Monday, November 28, and we will continue to accept submissions until the position is filled.
We strongly encourage Black, Indigenous, other people of color, people from working class backgrounds, women, LGBTQ+ individuals, and other people from marginalized communities to apply.
FARFA and CHFS are equal opportunity employers. Applicants will not be discriminated against based on race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, national origin, citizenship status, disability, ancestry, marital status, veteran status, medical condition, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law.
We look forward to hearing from you!
If you have a general question, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 254-697-2661