Eric Bergman and his wife Audra operate Groundworks Farm, market farm outside of Great Falls, Montana, his hometown. The path to farming has led Eric through work in biological research, natural history education, and sustainable development projects. He identifies with the good work of sustainability and justice that AERO advances. Besides the opportunity for deliberate living, he enjoys the elegant complexities of ecological farming, and recognizes its necessity for healthy communities.
Sally Bostrom has been a community leader, activist and volunteer for over 40 years. While a resident of Steamboat Springs, Colorado, Sally represented the environmental community on a broad based “smart growth” coalition. The group included ranchers, farmers, community leaders, and policy makers that worked to build consensus on issues relating to residential growth, public transportation and working lands. This unique collaborative community effort became a model for other areas of the country.
Barb Brant lives and works in Whitefish, Montana. As Special Projects Coordinator for Montana Coffee Traders it is her mission to have everyone asking “Who’s your Farmer?” whether they are talking about Kale or Coffee, and to bring Flathead Valley residents and tourists the delights and bounty of Montana local foods. She is a founding member of Nourish the Flathead and Farm Hands—non-profit organizations that are educating the Flathead about Food systems, creating gardens, farmers markets, and hosting fun food events.
Courtney Lowery-Cowgill is a writer, editor and farmer based in Central Montana. She and her husband Jacob run Prairie Heritage Farm — a small, diversified, organic operation that grows vegetables, heritage turkeys and heritage and ancient grains. Courtney’s off-farm job is as the managing editor of PBS MediaShift and she also writes about raising kids, food (and sometimes a little ruckus) on her blog and for various publications. She is the former editor in chief and the co-founder of the now offline magazine NewWest.Net and also the co-creator of the Rural News Network project at the University of Montana, which helped small towns revive their newspapers online.
Anna Jones-Crabtree is the Sustainable Operations Coordinator for the Rocky Mountain Region of the Forest Service. She received a Ph.D. in Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology where her dissertation work focused on the paradigm of sustainable decision-making. Anna is a registered Professional Engineer, as well as a farmer.
Jean Duncan is the Director of Finance & Administration for Women’s Voices of the Earth (WVE) in Missoula. She has worked for the Jeannette Rankin Peace Center, the Montana Hunger Coalition, the Good Food Store, and the Organic Certification Association of Montana (OCAM.) She has extensive experience with natural foods stores and cooperatives. She helped to establish Sundog Ecovillage near Missoula, where she lives with others in a community with a small ecological footprint.
Judith Fraser is a former Program Manager, of Wilderness and Trails, for the Bitterroot National Forest. In this capacity she supervised over 20 employees, managed a large budget, administered numerous trail contracts, and was involved in strategic planning. Before this position she spent many years in magnificent wilderness. She has an MS in Environmental Studies with an emphasis on resource management and a passion for plants, especially wildflowers. In retirement, she is an avid, non-linear gardener and addicted to Farmer’s Market. Her grapevine climbs a huge crabapple tree.
Pam Gerwe is a partner/operator of Purple Frog Gardens, a first generation market farm in Whitefish, Montana. Working with teenagers and community members in the dirt is one of her favorite things to do. She likes making compost, vermicompost and driving the tractor. Pam is slowly decreasing the farm flock of laying hens from a high of 750—she hopes never to have more than 200 chickens again. She loves the way the year divides her attentions. About half the year is spent farming/marketing and growing food/community. The other half she gets to travel around the Flathead Valley and Montana to talk about farming, growing food, community and the importance of eating local.
Kristina “Kiki” Hubbard’s own farming experience has been limited to a jaunt on a combine in Iowa, butchering turkeys, and keeping a modest garden at her home in Missoula, but she has always had a profound respect for farmers and ranchers. Her roots extend to Wisconsin’s gentle green terrain, but it’s in the Rocky Mountain West where she works as a researcher, writer, and organizer for food and agricultural organizations. She is Director of Advocacy for the Organic Seed Alliance, and is a consultant for the Center for Rural Affairs. Kiki loves to sip coffee, tell terrible jokes, and bake crackers.
John MannAfter receiving his BA in psychology from the University of Oklahoma, he moved to Bozeman and met his wife Jodi. After moving to Helena in 2004, his interest in gardening and agriculture became more vivid while learning to shear sheep, spin yarn, and weave. John and Jodi now own a farm, complete with a flock of Icelandic sheep, in Toston.
Kate O’Brien was absolutely instrumental in the concept, design, and creation of AERO’s new website. She, her husband Frank, and their sons Henry and Ben recently moved from Whitefish to Neskowin, a small town on the Oregon coast.
Jill Owen resides in Choteau with her husband and two horses. Jill owns and operates Mountain Front Market in Choteau, a grocery store specializing in organic and locally grown foods.
Bruce Smith is the Dawson County Extension Agent in Glendive. He has a BS in Agricultural Production/Animal Science, a BS in Agricultural Business from Montana State University, and an MBA from Cal Poly – San Luis Obispo. Bruce managed food manufacturing plants in California, Illinois, and Idaho before returning to Montana. He is currently working on developing local food systems, value-added agriculture, and rural leadership development.
Brett Tallman has been a self employed woodworker and building contractor for the past 14 years and focuses mostly on creative designs. He has also spent several years as a coach for the Flathead Valley Ski Education Foundation. Brett has a degree in physics from Montana State University and has had a long time interest in alternative energy, energy conservation, and sustainable practices.
Charlotte Trolinger completed her architecture degree in Chicago in the 70s, of which passive solar, appropriate design, and pedestrian, bicycle, and mass transit planning were all important components. While still in Chicago she became involved in the city’s urban garden program. In 1981, she moved to Bozeman to teach photography in the Media and Theatre Arts Department at MSU. As a faculty member and community activist, Charlotte’s courses and workshops focused on both image content and civic involvement. She recently moved to Boulder, MT.