POSITION TITLE: Allegheny Farm Manager (AFM)
MISSION: Allegheny Mountain Institute (AMI) is a 501(c)3 educational nonprofit organization that cultivates healthy communities through food and education.
HISTORY: AMI was founded in 2011 (as Allegheny Mountain School) as an intensive hands-on cooperative experiential learning and training program designed to teach members of our communities to grow and prepare their own food and to understand the nutritional benefits of eating seasonally.
VISION: A thriving network of collaborative, vibrant communities who value the connection between food and health.
AMI CORE VALUES:
OUR PROGRAMS: The AMI Fellowship is an 18-month, two-phase program. During Phase I (April through October), AMI Farm Fellows live, work, and study at the Allegheny Farm Campus in Highland County, VA. They study sustainable food production, whole foods preparation and preservation, mindfulness, wellness and nutrition, land stewardship and community development, as they train to become ambassadors for a healthier food culture. In Phase II from January – December of the following year, AMI Senior Fellows work in the service of AMI and/or a Partner Organization and focus on activities such as: building community gardens and urban farms, developing school gardens and site based curriculum, advocating sustainable land use, teaching nutrition and cooking for a healthy lifestyle.
OUR CAMPUS: The Allegheny Farm Campus is situated between 4000 and 4400 feet in elevation on a 550 acre farm in Highland County, VA, bordering both Virginia’s George Washington National Forest and West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest. The headwaters of the James, Potomac, and Greenbrier Rivers all begin their flow from a triple watershed divide (Eastern Continental) located on the top hay field. The farm was originally homesteaded about 110 years ago; about 100 acres have been cleared.
Unique ecosystems abound within the farm’s parameters, with beautiful groves of red spruce and mixed hardwoods, old growth rhododendron and mountain laurel thickets. Wildlife is plentiful and the old pastures give way to wildflowers of all kinds, huckleberries, blackberries, and diverse native edibles, medicinal plants, fungi, moss and lichens. This is a lush climate with abundant rainfall and dense vegetation. Summers can be quite cool; the average rainfall is 41.5 inches per year. Plant hardiness zone is 3-4, with approximately 120 frost-free days.
GENERAL DEFINITION AND PURPOSE OF WORK:
Reporting to the AMI Executive Director, the AFM is responsible for most operational aspects of the Allegheny Farm and Facilities in Highland County.
DISTINGUISHING FEATURES OF THE POSITION:
The AFM is a full-time, exempt position at our Highland County Campus. Work hours may fluctuate and are dependent on the time of year and organizational needs (preparation at the beginning of the season and end of season, for instance). Education of the broader community is a key component of Allegheny Mountain Institute, and a competitive applicant will have an interest in this area. All of our work is rooted in organic, regenerative agricultural practices, so the AFM should have a deep philosophical and operational agreement with such methods.
Agricultural & Animal
Responsible for the organic, sustainable management of all operational aspects of the AMI agricultural and meat production including: plant propagation, cultivation, succession planting, pest and nutrient management, harvesting, processing, distribution, quality and quantity control, organic orchard management, and animal husbandry (including poultry, apiary operations, and future bovine, swine, caprine, ovine and dairy operations).
Develop, establish and maintain the nourishment and health of the soil food web of AMI gardens to promote the health and vitality of the food we produce.
Manage and directly supervise the Lead Gardener.
Manage greenhouse propagation of seeds and starts.
Manage and develop crop rotation for season extension in the high tunnels.
Orchard management, including the establishment, pest protection, and plant guild selection of orchard and berry crops.
Manage mulching and weed control, including procurement of input materials.
Maintain garden tools and equipment storage; keep inventory and maintenance records.
Develop and maintain livestock facility as needed including grazing systems, fence and gate moving and repair, and water management.
Develop, establish, maintain healthy pasture management, disease control, and animal rotation.
Perform grass cutting and weed eating around gardens and orchards.
Invasive weed (Autumn Olive, Thistle) eradication, coordinated with Allegheny Farm Caretaker.
Facilities & General Management
Provide regular garden set up and maintenance, including:
Inspections and managing repairs of all farm infrastructure; garden fences; rodent control.
Plan and implement an efficient, working composting system for garden and orchard use.
Provide regular operational farm maintenance, including:
Water system inspections; report to Allegheny Caretaker if issues arise.
General overseeing of operational facilities, including inspections and managing repairs of buildings and farm infrastructure.
Manage High Tunnel / Greenhouse integrity and heating/cooling and ventilation systems.
Fixing items or overseeing repairs done by others.
Maintain Farm vehicle and equipment maintenance records. The Farm Caretaker will be responsible for maintaining vehicles and equipment while the Allegheny Farm Manager will maintain record keeping for farm vehicle and equipment maintenance.
Research equipment purchase and schedule delivery or pick up as needed.
Assist in heavy lifting/moving as needed.
Provide regular waste removal from the Allegheny Farm.
Ensure high standard of cleanliness, neatness and order on the Allegheny Farm.
Establish processes for upkeep of pantries, cold storage, root cellars, and feed rooms to ensure appropriate temperatures / humidities, and the vitality, safety and quantities of foodstuffs to meet requirements.
Establish best practices and processes for the Allegheny Farm record keeping systems.
Manage budget for Farm expenditures, including ordering, purchasing, and maintaining records.
Manage and mentor Fellows on farm-related work and educational opportunities during Phase I of the Fellowship.
Meet with AMI staff team, once per week to review and plan assignments. Work closely and collaboratively with the AMI Education Director to ensure proactive guidance and supervision of Phase I Fellows and the learning environment.
Work in collaboration with Allegheny Farm Caretaker on routine maintenance needs of farm and equipment and with the AMI Farm Operations Committee on big picture strategic plans and needs of Allegheny Farm.
Perform administrative tasks essential to the smooth operation of the farm.
Participate in Open Houses, public visits and educational outreach events as needed.
QUALIFICATIONS: KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES
Bachelor’s Degree or an equivalent amount of training and/or work experience required.
Minimum 3 years of experience in organic vegetable production and management, post-handling, and processing for sale and storage.
2- 3 years rotational, multi-species grazing experience.
Experience in Apiary management or desire to master.
Demonstrated understanding and application of Permaculture principles and ethics.
Knowledge and experience with medicinal herbs, perennial systems, no till farming, and orchard management.
Experience with heavy farm equipment use and basic maintenance.
General maintenance skills including: carpentry, plumbing, mechanical and electrical.
Knowledge of and commitment to building sustainable food systems.
Exceptional multi-tasking, organizational and time management skills.
Excellent interpersonal and communication skills (both written and verbal).
Ability to work both independently and as part of a team; ability to work closely and communicatively as a peer colleague with AMI Education Director and Allegheny Farm Caretaker.
Experienced crew leader.
Computer proficiency, including Excel, Microsoft Office.
Interest in cooking and culinary arts/hospitality.
Demonstrates high level of personal and ethical standards.
Ability to understand, interpret and enforce policies in an accurate and equitable manner.
Ability to complete and maintain applicable training and certifications as necessary.
Have a valid driver’s license with a good driving record.
Mentorship and/or teaching experience.
Ability to deal with Fellows, colleagues, and guests in a professional, timely, fair, and confidential manner.
PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS OF THE POSITION:
Applicant must be comfortable working outside in physically demanding environments, including climate irregularities, cold weather, and snowy winters. Applicant must be able to lift 50 (+) pounds regularly.
This is a full-time, exempt, year-round position. Salary is commensurate with experience. Benefits package includes: housing and farm-grown food share (2nd story of farm house is exclusively for AFM, while main floor is shared with AMI community in season; a lease and damage deposit are required), workers’ compensation coverage, and earned vacation/sick leave, plus holidays. This position requires regular weekend and periodic evening work.
Allegheny Mountain Institute does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, genetic information, political affiliation, or marital status. AMI is an equal opportunity employer.
The successful candidate should be currently residing in the United States and eligible to work in it, please no international applications. The candidate must have a valid drivers license, pass a background and driving record checks.
For more information: http://www.alleghenymountaininstitute.org/#join-us