Incubator Farm Site Coordinator, New Entry Sustainable Farming Project, Lowell, Mass.

Time: Seasonal, March to November

Organizational Description
New Entry Sustainable Farming Project’s (New Entry) mission is to improve our local and regional food systems by training the next generation of farmers to produce food that is sustainable, nutritious and culturally appropriate and making this food accessible to individuals regardless of age, mobility, ethnicity or socio-economic status. In doing this work, New Entry provides critical training, career development and economic opportunity to new farmers. New Entry is a fiscally sponsored project of Third Sector New England.

Job Summary
The Farm Sites are one of the cornerstones of the Incubator Farmer program of New Entry. After graduating from New Entry’s Farm Business Planning Course, participants have the option of leasing land for up to 3 years on the incubator farm. Many of the incubators choose to sell produce to New Entry’s Food Hub, among other markets. The Incubator Farm Site Coordinator and Educator has direct contact with these beginning farmers through the growing season.

The Incubator Farm Site Coordinator is an hourly (25-40 hours/week), seasonal position (March-November) that provides farm production training to small-scale beginning farmers. They are an integral part of the Farmer Training Team. Primary job responsibilities include a) managing New Entry’s three incubator farm sites and equipment, b) assisting incubator training participants in facilitation of crop production (emphasizing organic techniques) and achieving commercial farm goals and c) teaching monthly on-farm skills trainings and providing mentorship to incubator training participants. Additionally, the Incubator Farm Site Coordinator will share in the responsibility of fulfilling grant deliverables and reporting requirements and completing notes and assessments for incubator training participants.

Essential Job Functions

Farmer Training
Teach hands-on practical skills workshops in sustainable agriculture at the incubator farms;
Organize and coordinate farmer meetings and community participation at meetings, trainings, conferences and field trips in order to meet farmer learning goals;
Provide comprehensive individual technical assistance to beginning and advanced farmers in order to help them attain farm business planning and crop production goals.
Access and connect producers to resources needed to scale up, capitalize or expand farm enterprises.
Incubator Farm Management

Manage New Entry’s multiple incubator farm training sites using organic and sustainable production practices;
Establish clear roles and expectations at the incubator farms to support the needs of multiple constituents (growers, neighbors, land owners). Assist farmers to understand roles and meet expectations;
Conduct farm services, including land preparation/tillage, custom tractor work and the use/management of greenhouse, irrigation, cooling / storage and other farm supplies and equipment in order to maximize impact of New Entry resources;
Maintain farm equipment and facilities, including tractors, grounds, other tillage equipment, greenhouses and irrigation systems in order to ensure continuity of incubator farm site operations;
Determine equipment and supply needs and make purchases and coordinate with contractors in order to ensure integrity of their work;
Coordinate and supervise volunteer work days on the farms and supervise farm interns and work-study students in order to maximize impact;
Perform other related duties as assigned.
Grants and Data Management Support

Complete project deliverables that fall within the scope of the incubator farm training site;
Assist with submission of reports for a small portfolio of grants based on each funder’s reporting guidelines in a timely manner;
Provide input on grant proposal project narratives as needed;
Track farmer competency and skills development through a comprehensive case management system and data collection and tracking systems in New Entry’s cloud-based Salesforce CRM.
Special Requirements

Ability to lift up to 50 lbs.;
Ability to work outside in all weather conditions;
Ability to safely operate heavy machinery and implements on small acreage and in tight spaces;
Ability to assess equipment maintenance needs and address promptly;
Ability to walk on uneven terrain to conduct farm site workshops;
Valid drivers’ license and clean motor vehicle record.

Bachelor’s Degree in relevant field required. Agricultural training and experience in multiple aspects of farming and farm enterprise is essential. Prior farm management/ farm business ownership experience a plus;
At least 3 years’ experience in delivering technical assistance to farmers in the areas of crop production, marketing and business planning;
Experience in adult education and teaching to diverse learning styles;
Cross-cultural experience helpful. Ability to build relationships with early-stage beginning farmers and immigrant and refugee farmer participants;
Ability to safely operate and maintain farm equipment and machinery, including up to a 65 hp tractor with multiple implements;
Ability to manage large groups of volunteers;
Highly organized and good attention to detail;
Self-motivated and self- directed. Ability to work well within a rapidly-changing environment;
Excellent customer service, organizational and interpersonal skills;
Excellent oral and written communication skills;
Familiarity with federal and private grants proposals and reports or willingness to learn;
Working knowledge of computer software (MS Office, social media, spreadsheets) and Salesforce experience a plus;
Access to reliable private transportation necessary;
Ability to work a flexible schedule, including some evenings and weekends.

Commensurate with experience starting at $40,000 annually. Complete benefits package including health and dental insurance, retirement plan, paid vacation and paid holidays, sick time, personal days, etc. while employed in-season. Hours per week range from 25-40, depending on time in the season.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s