Carnation Farms, an 800+ acre farm in picturesque Carnation, WA, is a community-based hub for regenerative food & agriculture that educates and empowers the work of culinary, food, and farm professionals. We aspire to help create a thriving regional food system connecting farmers & culinary professionals around shared values of regenerative food, positive health and food equity.
We are a historically significant agricultural asset in the Snoqualmie Valley of King County, Washington, has recently embarked on an evolution of its 100-plus year role, purpose, and mission in the broader Pacific Northwest farm and food communities. The board, staff, and family members of this nonprofit organization have embraced a transformation – to focus on building healthy regenerative food systems as our purpose and to build and model regenerative practices throughout our farming and educational activities.
Decades of factory farming, monocultural farming, and industrialization have led to a badly managed and damaged food system in our country. This not only has significant implications for human and community health, but also contributes to dire ecological and climate conditions. It’s our belief that such practices hollow out rural economies and squander our water and soil. In the face of climate change, regenerative practices are more and more vital. Transforming our food system is some of the most important work of our time.
All of us at Carnation Farms feel a sense of urgency to make the biggest possible contribution we can to avert a negative future and help create positive changes in our food system. CF operates a certified organic farm including a 10-acre vegetable farm and 150 acres used for our livestock program. Now, the organization is embarking on furthering our current work to engage more completely in regenerative practices that build soil health, protect watersheds, and make resources and farm assets open and available to a broader, diverse community. The Director of Agriculture will play a leading role in this transformation.
This role will lead the development and implementation of the farm’s future regenerative agricultural strategies, in partnership with the Board and Executive Director. As a leader you will shape a vision for CF’s role in promoting healthier regenerative food and farming systems in the Pacific Northwest and help connect that vision to a variety of communities and stakeholders. Ideally, the perfect person for this role is entrepreneurial, flexible, and ready to adapt to and lead change. It is a unique moment and opportunity.
Developing and Directing Strategy and Partnerships
• Lead, influence, and manage all aspects of CF’s regenerative food and farming strategies. Create an annual strategic plan and budget for the regenerative direction of the farm and lead its implementation.
• Work closely with CF leadership team, including the Food & Culinary Director (to be hired) to develop programs that will effectively reach food, culinary professionals, and farmers in pursuit of CF’s mission and vision.
• Develop relationships and work closely with local entities, farms, culinary and civic organizations to identify mutual-value partnerships and establish CF as a valued partner in the region.
• Over time build CF’s profile locally and regionally (and someday nationally) as a leading presence in the world of regenerative food and agriculture by building networks, being a thought leader, and developing positive awareness of CF and our approaches and practices.
• Act as a spokesperson and advocate for CF in the organization’s dealings with other organizations and with the public.
• Develop, evolve, and communicate CF’s work in the context of the broader food system. Leadership and Management
• Lead and manage a farm team of 10-12 full-time staff along with seasonal positions. Hire, supervise and support direct reports; including livestock, crops, operations, and education leads. Provide goal-setting, evaluation, and performance development for all direct reports.
• Effectively work across all other functions and groups at CF; including Facilities, Farmstand, Culinary, & Admin.
• Create annual budgets and monitor the ongoing results and make adjustments as needed.
• Assist and partner with the Executive Director in fundraising responsibilities.
• Actively participate in a leadership role in strategic and annual planning processes for CF.
Directing the Farming and Land Use
• Oversee, support and evolve each of these programs:
• Vegetable Production: 5-10 acres of mixed vegetable production including but not limited to annual fruits and vegetables, perennials, flowers, fruit trees, berries, grains and cover crops.
• Livestock Production: 3-40 head cow-calf beef cattle, 15-30 head sheep for meat and fiber, 1-2 250-hen laying flocks, 1,200 annual broilers, 100-200 annual turkeys, fledgling rabbit program.
• Small Animal Processing: this program is dormant for the 2023 season, but we have a small Poultry and Small Animal Processing Unit. In the past we processed as many as 8000 broilers + other small animals.
• Work with the team to plan annual vegetable production, livestock production, pasture management, and work with facilities team on forage production and management.
• Oversee and support the following sales revenue outlets: CSA, Farmers Markets, Farmstand, Food Hubs, Wholesale, Online, and Direct to Consumer avenues.
• Direct and support the CF team in Organic, Regenerative, and other certification processes.
• Bring the mindset of an educator and teacher to the mission and work of CF.
• 10+ years’ experience on an organic / sustainable farm, having played strategic, operational, and management roles. Familiar with practices like diversified crop rotations, no- / low-tillage, rotational grazing, etc.
• 5+ years’ experience leading and managing teams of people.
• Demonstrated leader in and commitment to the importance of regenerative agricultural practices.
• A range of knowledge about various farming practices across produce and livestock.
• A demonstrated background and commitment to equity and inclusion.
• Excellent communication and interpersonal skills and problem-solving ability.
• Prior experience working with and in non-profit organizations.
• Local / regional knowledge and relationships
• Familiarity working with potential institutional and individual donors
• Experience in the process of community engagement, including public sector (county and state level)
• Degree in food, food systems, agriculture, soil science, environmental science, land management, or similar.
Carnation Farms does not discriminate or determine employment on the basis of race, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, or any other factor; employment decisions are made only on the basis of qualifications, merit, and business needs. We believe diversity creates resilience and strength and believe a diverse workplace is crucial to the success of our organization and our efforts to support organic farmers. We strive to create a safe and supportive office culture and workplace that encourages racial and social equity. and as such, we have zero-tolerance policy for discrimination of any kind, and we encourage all qualified applicants to apply no matter their race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, veteran or disability status.
Our employee benefits are robust and include:
• Subsidized medical (one plan option is completely free to you), vision, dental for you and your family
• Short- and long-term disability insurance
• $50,000 in free life insurance with options for supplemental, spouse, and child life
• Immediate vesting in company match 401k on first day of hire
• FSA enrollment option
• Cell phone stipend
• Lots of veggies and eggs
• Relocation funds are available Salary Range DOE – $120,000-130,000 annually.
Please send your resume to Marieh@carnationfarms.org, along with a cover letter explaining how your qualifications are a fit and why you are passionate about this leadership role opportunity. Applications without a cover letter will be automatically rejected – we want to know you care and are as passionate as we are!