News from the Steering Committee

Steering Committee Members: Back Row (L-R): Ben Martens, Dana Morse, Heron Breen, Mark Hews, Ted Quaday, Bob Dorsey. Front Row (L-R) Daniel Wallace, Bill Eldridge, Molly Anderson, Sara Trunzo, Deb Burd, Anne Trenholm, John Jemison. Not pictured: Mark Dvorozniak, Caldie Jackson, John Piotti, Penny Jordan, Rosie Vanadestine, Lisa Webster.

Undeterred by monthly snowstorms, the 19-member Maine Food Strategy Steering Committee has been meeting throughout the winter to develop consensus around a set of draft goals for the initiative. Committee member Penny Jordan of Jordan’s Farm in Cape Elizabeth said she expected to be challenged by the process:

“When I decided to become part of the Steering Committee, I knew that the work would challenge me and my patience, but I knew if we brought together a committed group of informed people that embody Maine values and believe in possibilities, through our collective networks and relationships, we can influence the evolution of a food system that is dynamic and responsive,” Penny said.

Penny recently joined fellow committee members Mark Hews of M.E. Hews and Company and John Jemison, a University of Maine Cooperative Extension faculty member in looking at how the initiative can connect with more individuals and groups as it seeks both input and partners.

“As a member of the Maine Food Strategy, I appreciate the willingness of such a diverse group of people to tackle the very real challenge of balancing the larger food policy issues of developing a sustainable food system with the practical, on the ground, solutions that food producers are implementing every day,” said Mark Hews. “Finding a way to juggle process with action is never an easy road.”

On March 12th, a day-long workshop featuring the “You Get What You Measure” curriculum was facilitated by Samantha Dunne of Yellow Wood Associates, and Molly Anderson, a steering committee member trained in the process. Energized committee members work through the early steps of framing a strategy with measurable goals.

Steering Committee determining priorities

Steering Committee determining priorities

Over the coming month, the committee will look at what conditions need to be changed or created to support a set of broad goals aimed at strengthening Maine’s food system. The initiative anticipates releasing information for input from stakeholders later this spring.

 

 

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