Farm manager Dana smiling and holding a carrotDANA FERNANDEZ

FARM MANAGER

As of May 2020, Dana is a new addition the Bayard Cutting Farm family. A graduate from Farmingdale State College (FSC) with a Bachelor’s Degree in Horticultural Technology Management, she takes on the role as CSA Farm Manager. She has worked in many aspects in horticulture including nursery retail, alongside professional horticulturists and as a student assistant to the FSC Horticulture Department Staff in their greenhouses. She has extensive knowledge about greenhouse management, a passion for entomology and a newfound excitement about healing herbs and biodynamics.

Dana grew up on Long Island and is very passionate about sustainability. She has been growing vegetables since she was a child with the help of her mother, which has instilled in her a love for homegrown food. She hopes to use her well-rounded knowledge of horticulture and sustainable principles to encourage people to grow their own quality organic vegetables at home.

 


JOHNNY KORKODILOS

FIELD MANAGER

Johnny started his journey at the Arboretum in 2015 as a farm intern and continued in 2016 as a farm apprentice.  As a trained Permaculture landscape designer, he brings an additional perspective to further the farm’s goal of regenerative organic farming.  He is dedicated to supporting the CSA community’s access to the freshest, best quality produce available as well as the deep connection that forms in relationships shaped around this practice.  He enjoys engaging the often curious public on the practical and philosophical operations of the farm.  Facilitating and aiding in people’s experience of symbiosis with their local landscape is a driving passion for him.

His initiation into the world of gardening came from both his maternal and paternal grandmothers.  When he was a young boy he spent much of his time in his maternal grandmother’s traditional German-style garden and his paternal grandmother’s traditional Greek-style garden, both embedded with the philosophy of growing as much food as possible while maintaining balance in the ecosystem.  He has a strong personal interest in sharing the healing practices of herbalism, yoga, and qi-gong empowering people to further their own health sovereignty.

 

Karen ValdiniKAREN VALDINI

FIELD TRIP COORDINATOR

B.S. Food and Nutrition- S.U.N.Y Oneonta, NY
Masters of Education Elementary Ed- Dowling College, Oakdale, NY
Integrative Nutrition Certified Health Coach-Institute for Integrative Nutrition, NYC, NY
During her tenure as a middle school science and elementary enrichment teacher, Karen developed a farm curriculum based on the well-known program “Edible Schoolyard” founded by Chef Alice Waters of Berkley, California.  For years this program focused on teaching students the importance of being conscientious stewards of the land, growing their own food, developing better eating habits, and incorporating this information into their daily lives.

Now retired from formal teaching, Karen has brought a similar program to the Bayard Cutting Arboretum and its newly founded CSA.  In addition, Karen has developed a School Field Trip Program which is now available for local school children in Grades K-5.

The basic belief of these projects is that the key to a future healthy society is to educate our children and to empower them by taking control of their eating habits.  Learning to grow their own food allows the children to get their hands dirty while digging in the soil, planting, and exploring the wonders of nature.  It is an opportunity for children to learn life lessons outside the classroom.