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Throughout his four years at Warren Wilson, Loren Cardelli, worked on the College Farm except for one semester spent studying Tropical Agriculture at the University of Hawaii in Hilo. The college farm strived to teach the students the practical implications of working on a farm and agriculture became more than a passion – it became a lifestyle. Loren learned the management styles of a small-scale pig production as well as the inn and outs of a 65 head grass-fed beef operation. With a constant debate and dialogue about their agrarian beliefs, Loren and his friends would not only challenge each other in the classroom, but in the field as well. This is what initiated Loren’s dream of creating a universal meetinghouse for the transfer of ecological agriculture practices and ideas. Currently Loren is living in South East Asia and trying to document the traditional techniques used there, while learning from the wisdom of many agricultural generations. In the future Loren looks forward to pursuing agro-ecology in graduate school and working towards educating communities, through the education and experience he’s accumulated.
During high school, who is from Atlanta, Georgia, Asher received a pamphlet in the mail from Warren-Wilson College, visited, and knew that this was the place to receive a formal college education. He graduated from the Environmental Studies department with a concentration in Sustainable Agriculture and a minor in Biology. Asher spent seven semesters and two summers working on the college’s mixed crop and livestock farm. It was here that he met best friend and partner Loren Cardeli, as well as many of his other closest friends who are also pushing forward in this eco-agriculture movement. Not only did the college farm show Asher that a life in food systems and agriculture was his calling, but it also gave him a chance to study and work for other farm operations around the country, including Ferry Creek Ranch and Farms for Families in Livingston Montana, Glover Family Farms in Georgia, and a few operations around Asheville such as Hickory Nut Gap and Gaining Ground Farms. Asher also enjoys agriculture conferences, playing guitar, crosswords over coffee, and practicing Spanish; he has traveled across the United States in Central America and throughout the Caribbean, and will be traversing through Patagonia spring of 2011 to write for AGC, travel, and fish. Though agriculture holds a very large spot in his heart, Asher is also an avid fly fisherman and guide in Southwest Montana. He will be attending Clemson in August of 2011 to do research on forage finished beef in the Southeastern United States, and is very excited about A Growing Culture and its potential for information exchange, networking, and community!
Tommy received a B.S. in Environmental Science and Conservation Biology from Warren Wilson College, and during his fours years here worked on the Farm Crew tending the college’s mixed crop and livestock farm. After graduation, Tommy spent the next few years in and around Asheville, NC growing organic vegetables, building grazing systems for grass-fed cattle, and learning every step of the way. At this point, agriculture had become a lifestyle, and undoubtedly a future for Tommy. He then decided to set sail on the frigid Bering Sea. As a certified North Pacific Groundfish Observer, he collects biological data on commercial fishing vessels, trying to ensure the sustainability of the world’s most productive fishery and enforce responsible fishing practices. Despite his passion for marine biology, Tommy has returned to the land and his agricultural career path. He is currently living in Fort Collins, Colorado and will graduate from Colorado State University this May, 2011, with a Masters in Agriculture with a focus in Integrated Resource Management. This multidisciplinary approach focuses on improving the environmental and economic sustainability of forage-based agricultural systems. Tommy is thankful for the educational opportunities that he has experienced, and plans to apply them in a production setting as well as through education and consulting.