The Empowerful Podcast was created to share the profound stories of movers and shakers who are positively impacting the world. Together, we believe we can amplify that change. We live by the motto of an old African Proverb, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”
In today's episode of the Empowerful Podcast, we are joined by Melissa Campbell — Executive Director of the WA Farmland Trust. With Melissa at the helm, the trust has been securing thousands of acres of farmland across Washington for future generations. Melissa's passion for land stewardship stems from her upbringing in a small, Midwest community. Tune in for a conversation on the future of farming in the US, the trust's impact on local farmers, and insight into how we can continue to use the land sustainably.
Melissa didn't grow up in a farming family. But, as soon as her aunt married into a family farm, Melissa spent as much time as she could playing in the fields and learning how to work the land. She was hooked. After a variety of degrees and jobs in resource management and urban planning, Melissa found her way back to the agrarian fields of her youth with the WA Farmland Trust. Since joining the trust in 2008, Melissa has held a variety of titles and explored the full spectrum of operating a land trust. Now, as the Executive Director, Melissa is driving towards creating "Forever Farms" and ensuring farmland is accessible and affordable for generations to come.
The WA Farmland Trust, formerly known as the PCC Farmland Trust, is paving the way for a sustainable farming future in Washington state. The trust stewards and protects farmlands across the state ensuring access to these lands for future generations of farmers. Started in 1999 by leader of PCC Community Markets, the trust has since helped protect 24 unique farm properties and stop development on some of the state's most vulnerable land. In preserving this land, they are helping to save soil, traditions, and communities.
With COVID-19 all but eliminating in-person fundraising opportunities for nonprofits like WA Farmland Trust, they have had to find other creative ways to bring in donations. At the end of September, the trust alongside Viva Farms (another MiiR Impact partner!) will be hosting the "Love the Land" virtual benefit concert. With guests like Dave Matthews, Luz Elena Mendoza, and more — this is sure to be a welcome refresh for everyone missing summer concerts. To support WA Farmland Trust and pick up your virtual ticket, head to their website!