Dear Friends & Supporters,

It's now been over two weeks since the Big Day of Giving and we are still reeling over the outpouring of support from you. All day, we watched the leaderboard, becoming giddy at each increase in our total, excited to see whose name was added to our donor list. At the end of the day, our total was $47,626. Fifteen other non-profit organizations in the Sacramento region raised more money than we did--not a bad finish out of 529.

Community-wide giving days like the Big Day of Giving are a great way to raise money and develop philanthropy. But, what is philanthropy exactly and who is a philanthropist? For so long, I thought philanthropy was something that could only be done by someone with A LOT of money. I never imagined that philanthropy could be so much more, that even I could become a philanthropist myself.  

"Philanthropy is an idea, event, or action that is done to better humanity and usually involves some sacrifice," according to  

Often that sacrifice is money, but sometimes it's not; like the donation of a truck that will haul farm tools and get goods to market for our West Sacramento Urban Farm Program -thank you Kyle at Ramos Oil. Or it's a volunteer making lunch for staff after a morning of setting up for Dinner on the Farm-thank you Kate Morejohn. Philanthropy can manifest itself as a laptop donation for a student in need-thank you Randy Dunham and sometimes it's a big pile of compost that nourishes the fields for beginning farmers to learn the trade, thanks Suellen Whitham at Westside Spreading.

These donations of goods and services, combined with your generous cash gifts keep us endeared to you. There is so much to come from the Center for Land-Based Learning as we address the need for a highly qualified workforce in food, agriculture and natural resources. Watch us grow our urban farm program as we continue to graduate new farmers from the California Farm Academy, addressing the need for more farmers to feed us all.

With Thanks,

Christine McMorrow
Director of Development and Communications


Congratulations to our board Vice-Chair David Shabazian

Valley Vision commemorated the legacy of Alexander Gonzalez, David Shabazian and Warren Smith during a fun awards program hosted by comedian and former Saturday Night Live writer Jim Pelley, at the California History Museum on May 14th.  Valley Vision Legacy Feast is a celebration of the contributions of three regional leaders who have been selected for outstanding achievements in the areas of community vitality, environmental sustainability and economic growth.  David donated his $3,000 endowment to the Center for Land-Based Learning.

Stephanie Etcheverria Hired as New FARMS Leadership Director
FARMS Leadership Director, Stephanie Etcheverria's first experience with FARMS Leadership was as a high school student who participated in the program. It was in one of the groups she was involved in that encouraged her to pursue a career in agriculture. Since then, Stephanie graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with a double major in Agribusiness and Wine and Viticulture. After college, she worked for Enterprise Rent-A-Car and was promoted to branch manager before making the move to work in agriculture.

Before joining the Center for Land-Based Learning team, Stephanie was a Program Coordinator for California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom, where she managed a wide variety of programs, from the state-wide writing contest Imagine this... for 8,000 students to the annual Agriculture in the Classroom Conference. She also coordinated and hosted exhibits at state, regional, and county conferences to promote the benefits of teaching agriculture to students.

Stephanie is a recent graduate of the California Agriculture Leadership Program, Class 43. During the 16-month program, she was a co-chair for their class project; a career fair for middle and high school students in the San Francisco Region. There were 350 students and 21 agriculture representatives in attendance at the event. For many students it was their first encounter with farmers and professionals in the agriculture industry. They left the event with new knowledge of the many career opportunities in agriculture. Through Ag Leadership, Stephanie became involved in the Common Threads North committee that recognizes women in Northern California for their contributions to agriculture and their communities.

Community involvement is important to Stephanie. She has been a member of the Active 20-30 Club of Greater Sacramento #1032 since 2009. She has co-chaired the Monte Carlo Fundraising event and been active on many other committees. Stephanie also enjoys running and in 2011 she completed the California International Marathon and hopes to run it again this year.   

Stephanie enjoys sharing agricultural experiences with students and teachers as they discover the diversity of agriculture production and career opportunities and is excited to join the Center for Land-Based Learning and FARMS Leadership Program!
Upcoming Events
June 8
Teacher Workshop: Ag Industry Tour Flyer [PDF]
June 16
Industry Roundtable Flyer [PDF]
June 24-26
Floodplain Workshop Flyer [PDF]
Want to stay in touch?     Sign up for our newsletter 
Stay Connected:
5265 Putah Creek Rd., Winters, CA 95694