Shifting the Course of California Agricultural Policy

Director, Cal Ag Roots Project

Grant Type: 

  • Leadership Program

Fellows: 

Award Date: 

November 2014

Amount: 

$25,000

Location: 

Davis, CA

The California Institute for Rural Studies (CIRS) has hired Ildi Carlisle-Cummins for the newly created position of Director of the Cal Ag Roots Project.  The concept for the Project was developed by Ildi, and will be launched by her and CIRS through her new position.  The Project's goal is to shift the course of California agricultural policy by bringing its history into the present - highlighting various points along the way when policy decisions could have shifted towards a more just and sustainable system.  Looking through this historical lens will illuminate areas in California's agricultural system that may offer leverage points for future change.  Through this work, Ildi and CIRS will support food movement leaders, advocates, and researchers by providing critical information to craft better strategies.  Ildi will engage an active Advisory Board, develop a team of consultants to assist with media and outreach, launch a Cal Ag Roots Project website, develop educational pieces and written material, and host a public launch of the Project.

Spotlight on Leadership

Photo: Bryce Vickmark / MIT
Janelle Heslop is no shrinking violet. She found a voice for herself and the environment when she was in middle school, volunteering as a junior docent for the Hudson River Museum. Today, Heslop is honing her passion into skills in business and engineering through her second and final year of MIT’s Leaders for Global Operations (LGO) program. The program provides two degrees: an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management and an SM from the School of Engineering, giving Heslop the foundation to pursue her dream of transforming businesses around their environmental impact. “You can make fun and interesting products that also take good care of our natural resources,” she says.Read more >

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