Meet The Farmers
I grew up only a few miles from the farm in southern Medina county. I consider myself a jack-of-all-trades, and credit my many skills to some great mentors throughout the numerous jobs that I have had starting at an early age. I graduated from college in 2012 from Ohio University. I loved my time at Ohio University I feel like that school brought out the best in me. I studied media production and visual communications. I still enjoy film and still find time to work on different projects. I put my web development skills to use working on this site. I also took a fair amount of agriculture classes at OU including a sustainable gardening class that greatly influenced me and what we are doing with this farm. My love of agriculture was also influenced by my parents, especially my Dad, who has used and taught me organic agriculture practices throughout my life. After college I took a job at CropKing doing media work including videos, websites, the catalog as well as some sales, construction, IT, and occasionally welding. In 2013 I was able to purchased 10 acres of land previously maintained as a golf course, hence the farm name. I refinished the 1,700 sq ft clubhouse as a residence and have performed extensive work to prepare several acres for vegetable production.
I grew up in York, Pennsylvania, completely removed from agriculture, and I went on to attend Drexel University in Philadelphia to study biomedical engineering. I had always gravitated toward the STEM subjects, with my main focus on biology and medicine, though, like many in their early college years, I was uncertain of the path I wanted to pursue. Late my freshman year I became a member of the Drexel rowing team, and that athletic commitment invigorated my interest in nutrition, which at that time was focused on nutrition for performance purposes. Though the coursework within my concentration, biomaterials and tissue engineering, was challenging and intense, I never felt it was my true calling. Following my undergraduate in spring 2010 I enrolled in a master's program at Drexel in biological science while continuing to be a member of the rowing team due to my final year of NCAA rowing eligibility, and then serve as a graduate assistant the second year of my master's program. In graduate school I refined my interest in nutrition to focus on vegetables, the most primary of food components, and had the opportunity to work with a group of students with similar passions who were just exploring the tip of urban agriculture and hydroponics. By finally deciding to pursue such a narrow field I was lucky enough to be hired in June 2012 by the hydroponic company CropKing located in Lodi, OH. I worked in product and commercial sales for two years before moving into the position of greenhouse manager. In that position I managed the company's experimental greenhouse and raised thousands of plants managing the equipment, and building confidence in my horticultural skills. In my three years at the company I became very knowledgeable of and experienced with the equipment used in hydroponic greenhouse production, the techniques, and agriculture in general, and I had the opportunity to work with experts in the field. In those years I traveled the country meeting with hydroponic growers of varying scales and professionals in academia. Starting Front 9 Farm in the summer of 2015 was the next step in pursuing my passion for diverse vegetable production and working as an agricultural producer. I look forward to borrowing techniques from the world of high tech/controlled environmental agriculture and applying them to a lower tech setting, and applying my knowledge of agricultural products, materials and irrigation equipment to our market garden operation.