Shemariah Blum-Evitts, Interim Executive Director
Rachel Brice, Program & Development Manager
Mike Ghia, Vermont Field Agent
Kate Kellman, Digital Marketing Coordinator
Kali Lucey, Operations Coordinator & New Hampshire Field Agent
Lisa Luciani, Communications Manager
Jan Mackey, Business Manager
Will O’Meara, Connecticut Field Agent
Kathy Ruhf, Senior Advisor
Jae Silverman, Massachusetts Field Agent
Shemariah Blum-Evitts, Interim Executive Director. Having previously served as Program Director at Land For Good for the past 5 years, Shemariah has deep experience guiding this work. She has a working knowledge of many of the issues and needs in each state in our region and has served as project director on our Land for Farmers initiative with state partners and collaborators across New England since 2021. Prior to Land For Good, she was the founder and Program Manager of New Lands Farm with Ascentria Care Alliance from 2008-2015. The program, which she initiated and built in collaboration with community partners, offered training and land access to new American farmers in Central and Western Massachusetts seeking community gardens, farming enterprises and technical assistance. Shemariah studied land use and agricultural planning while gaining her Masters in Regional Planning from UMass Amherst. Her thesis developed a foodshed assessment model to map current and potential working farmland and farmland capacity. She believes strongly in the importance of working farms. She operates her own small-scale, kosher, pastured poultry operation with her husband on their home farm in South Deerfield MA.
Rachel Brice, Program & Development Manager. Rachel is a life-long gardener and sometimes farm worker, with a passion for small farms and local food systems. Before moving to New England in 2017 to pursue her master’s degree at Antioch University, Rachel was a full-time classroom teacher in central Texas. For the past two years, Rachel directed the C&S Workplace Organic Gardens Project, which provides company land, education, and technical support to C&S employees who wish to garden at work. Now, in addition to her role as Program Coordinator with Land for Good, Rachel is pursuing her PhD at Antioch, researching organizational resilience in food sovereignty organizations. When not at work or focused on her studies, you can find her in the woods with her Malinois Shepherd puppy.
Mike Ghia, Vermont Field Agent. Mike was a beginning farmer and land seeker from 1997-2007. Now he farms part-time while working as a farm consultant through University of Vermont Extension and the Women’s Ag Network. Mike also works through the Vermont Farm Viability Program as a Farm Business Planner. He coaches beginning farmers on farm and tenure issues and financial planning and assists families with inter-generational transfers. His expertise includes grazing planning and soils.
Kate Kellman, Digital Marketing Coordinator. Kate and her husband moved to Amherst MA because he was an aspiring chestnut farmer. They knew that accessing land was likely in their future. As an entrepreneur, Kate’s background is in community outreach, digital marketing, and events management. Immersing themselves in their community and joining a local community supported agriculture (CSA), Kate deepend her love for farm fresh food and seasonal living. The natural abundance of New England sustains and inspires her, and she is excited to bring her creativity and relational approach to outreach and engagement to Land For Good. When not supporting communications at Land For Good, you can find Kate in her Amherst studio running Of Note Stationers, a mindful communication business she co-founded in 2014.
Lisa Luciani, Communications Manager. With 10 years at Land For Good, Lisa values the organization’s energetic team, collaborative work and strong partnerships. Lisa brings 30 years of marketing and communications experience from strategy to development and outreach. Her skills have built an emerging communications team. Her innovative outside web design work has received national recognition and honors. A New Hampshire native, Lisa appreciates the value of our agricultural landscapes and local food system. As a lover of food, nature, and connecting with places, Lisa finds the most joy in exploring the New England coast with her husband.
Jan Mackey, Business Manager. Jan’s keen interest in nutrition and its effect on health began as a teenager. Her concern with the impact of chemicals used to maintain freshness during food shipment underscores the importance of locally produced food. Being a part of Land For Good gives Jan the opportunity to have a small part in keeping food sources close to home and her community healthier. She is a Certified QuickBooks Pro-Advisor and has worked in bookkeeping for 15 years.
Will O’Meara, Connecticut Field Agent. Will’s farming roots go back to high school on Waldingfield Farm in Washington CT, where he worked for a total of nine growing seasons, three of which as the assistant farm manager. During a brief hiatus in his stint at Waldingfield, Will received his bachelor’s degree in Sustainable Food and Farming from UMass Amherst, where he worked on the UMass Student Farm crew. In 2020, Will and his partner founded Hungry Reaper Farm where they grow vegetables, herbs, and cut flowers in Morris, CT. Will served on the Steering Committee of The New CT Farmer Alliance, a chapter of the National Young Farmers Coalition, from 2017 to 2023, finally serving as president from 2020-2023. Will continues his work with Young Farmers as a Land Advocacy Fellow in the lead up to the 2023 Farm Bill. In his home state of CT, Will is the Chair of the Farmland Preservation Advisory Board, sits on the Working Lands Alliance Steering committee, and serves on the Farm Service Agency State Committee. Will is excited to serve his agricultural community and carry out Land For Good’s mission in Connecticut.
Kathy Ruhf, Senior Advisor. Kathy began LFG’s work on farmland access, tenure and transfer in 2004, when there was scarcely any recognition or regional resources on these topics. Over the ensuing decade, land access became an issue of priority concern among all farm and food system stakeholders in New England and nationally. Kathy most recently served as Executive Director (2013-14). Kathy is a nationally recognized leader in farm entry, succession and tenure. She has co-authored guidebooks, managed projects, led workshops and worked closely with farm families on these topics. She served as co-director of the New England Small Farm Institute for 17 years, and on the USDA Advisory Committee on Beginning Farmers and Ranchers for six years, and chair for two. Kathy coordinated a regional network, the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (NESAWG) from its founding in 1992 until late 2012. She continues to work and write on farm and food policy as a NESAWG Senior Fellow. Kathy has Masters degrees in Administration (University of Massachusetts) and in Natural Resource Management (Antioch/New England). She lives and works in Belchertown, Mass.
Abby Sadauckas. Abby is a farmer and agricultural service provider. She and her fiancé, Jake Galle met at Vermont College of the Fine Arts where Abby earned an MFA. Abby and Jake run Apple Creek Farm. The farm produces MOFGA certified organic, grass-fed beef, goat and lamb, as well as certified organic eggs and poultry. They market their products year-round in nearby Brunswick at farmers’ markets. Abby is a long-time collaborator of Land For Good, as well as a former organizational and farmer-client. Her professional work combines her experiences as a new farmer with her work as an agricultural service provider and she is a member of the University of Maine’s Farm Coaching Team. Abby served as Land For Good’s Maine Field Agent from 2018 – 2022.