The Natural Resources Defense Council has announced its winners of the third annual Growing Green Awards, selected from a field of 265 nominees by an independent panel of sustainable food experts.
Here's more about the winners, from NRDC:
Jim Cochran, founder and co-owner of Swanton Berry Farm
2011 Food Producer
Cochran started the first commercially successful organic strawberry operation in California, Swanton Berry Farm, and the first 100% unionized organic farm in the nation. Jim not only helped jumpstart the organic strawberry industry, but is also encouraging fair labor practices among sustainable growers. Jims unique employee benefitsincluding an employee stock ownership plan, health coverage and a pension planrecognize the workers on his farm as vital partners in the operation. Jim is the recipient of a $10,000 cash prize for his achievements in sustainable food production.
Molly Rockamann, founder EarthDance Farms
2011 Young Food Leader
Rockamann, founder of the non-profit organization EarthDance Farms in Ferguson, Mo., won for her efforts to cultivate a new generation of sustainable farming stewards in the Midwest. Through Molly's unique apprenticeship program, urban St. Louis residentswith ages spanning five decadeslearn the complete cycle of organic farming from seed to market. Encouraged by Molly's leadership and vision, EarthDance apprentices have gone on to establish their own farms, initiate farm-to-table summer camps, start school and community gardens, and run Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs.
Chef Ann Cooper
2011 Knowledge Leader
Chef Ann Cooper is an outstanding leader in the national movement to ensure that all children have access to nutritious food at school. Known as the Renegade Lunch Lady, Ann started the Food Family Farming Foundation, which provides schools with the tools and guidance they need to transition from over-processed meals to healthy, fresh ingredients on a limited budget. Anns day job is in the trenches of the Boulder Valley School District, where she is transforming lunch menus in the entire 48-school district, just as she has done before on the east and west coasts.
Pam Marrone, CEO and founder of Marrone Bio Innovations
2011 Business Leader
Pam Marrone is the CEO and founder of Marrone Bio Innovations, a leading developer of environmentally-responsible biopesticides based in Davis, Calif. MBIs products use naturally occurring materials like plants and microorganisms to help growers control pests, maintain yields, and reduce risks to human health and the environment frequently associated with conventional pesticides. Having launched three successful companies to develop bio-based pesticide alternatives, Pam has created a strong business model in a rapidly growing industry.
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