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Farmer Training Finance and Project Coordinator - Angelic Organics Learning Center, Caledonia, IL

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Rebecca B
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Farmer Training Finance and Project Coordinator - Angelic Organics Learning Center, Caledonia, IL

Farmer Training Finance and Project Coordinator
Angelic Organics Learning Center
Caledonia, Illinois

ANGELIC ORGANICS LEARNING CENTER (AOLC) JOB DESCRIPTION

Position:        Farmer Training Finance and Project Coordinator
 
Supervisor:    Farmer Training Program Director
 
Salary:           $16,000 for a half-time position; $24,000 for 75% FTE
 
Location:        The position is based out of our main office in Caledonia, IL. 
 
Status:           Applications will be received and reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

POSITION PURPOSE:
The Farmer Training Finance and Project Coordinator (PC) is an up to 30 hours per week position in the administrative headquarters of AOLC.  The position may be divided between two staff people.  The purpose of this role is to develop services to help beginning farmers improve the economic viability of their farms by increasing their access to affordable capital and competitive financial products, as well as to support farmers in deepening their set of financial management skills. Furthermore, the PC will support the development of a rural-urban network of rural and urban growers, as well as coordinate other projects within the department.
 
The PC works along side three other staff of Angelic Organics Learning Center’s Farmer Training Initiative, whose mission it is to serve and facilitate trainings for our next generation of farmers. We help urban and rural people learn directly from our region’s best farmers and begin growing for market. We offer business planning, on-farm training and mentoring.
 

  1. KEY AREAS OF RESPONSIBILITY:

1.  Farm Finance Coordination: (25% Full Time Equivalent, FTE)

  1. Farm Asset Builder IDA Program:  Manage an Individual Development Account (IDA) matched-savings program and related technical assistance for beginning farmers in the CRAFT (Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training) farmer network.
    1. Manage and deepen communications with existing partners and funders, prepare for and attend meetings with potential financial and funding partners, write marketing/development pieces for outreach purposes.
    2. Work under the Communication Coordinator and Program Director to publicize and grow the IDA program
    3. Manage the IDA program, including marketing to the CRAFT network, guide the application selection process, and lead/monitor participants during the program, including check-ins by phone, email or farm visit
    4. Provide business planning, financial analysis assistance, and recordkeeping assistance to farmers
    5. Conduct evaluations with farmer-participants, compile statistics/outputs and share with collaborating partners
  2. Microfinancing Support Services:
    1. Monitor new and existing loan programs and communicate with farmers about them
    2. Keep current on national farm financing programs
    3. Build a network of farm financing technical assistance providers
    4. Coach farmers individually, as requested
  3. Technical Assistance to Farmers: offer one-on-one technical assistance in farm financial record keeping and business planning to CRAFT member farms as requested
  4. Project-Based Duties (30% FTE)
    1. CCChicagoland Growers Network:        
      1. Clarify working relationship between CRAFT and Advocates for Urban Agriculture (AUA), and develop communications language to direct members between networks
      2. Collaborate with CRAFT steering committee and partners to explore growth areas for regional farmer network, including development of web-based platform and protocols for resource and information sharing
      3. Identify, inventory, and do outreach to existing grower’s networks and collaborating groups that serve the greater Chicago Foodshed
    2. Advanced Winter Workshops: Plan and facilitate two all-day workshops a year on advanced topics like farm financing, record keeping, marketing, etc.
    3. Write success stories; work with the Communications Coordinator to solicit press coverage for farm financing programs.
    4. Other duties as assigned, such as planning/facilitation with other department events or meetings
  5. Fundraising for Farmer Training Programming (20% FTE)
    1. Implement the fundraising strategy and plan developed by the Resource Development staff and the Program Director, which includes researching potential funders, developing marketing materials, and developing relationships with potential funders via phone, email and in-person meetings
    2. Participate in and provide AOLC staff support for fundraising efforts initiated by the Upper Midwest CRAFT farmer network, such as contacting ag input providers and soliciting feedback and information from CRAFT member farmers as resources for CRAFT fundraising strategies

QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Experience working in a finance-related field, with demonstrated research and analytical proficiency with financial products, and work experience in financial skills trainings
  • Familiarity with sustainable agriculture and nonprofit organizations; experience with farming and farmers
  • Experience in building coalitions, partnerships, social networks and other multi-stakeholder associations; excellent interpersonal and oral communication skills
  • A commitment to the Learning Center’s work to build local food systems and its partnership with Angelic Organics, a Biodynamic Community Supported Agriculture farm.
  • Excellent organizational skills and project coordination with outstanding attention to detail
  • Proven fundraising skills
  • Mac and Internet literacy, and proficiency using Microsoft Word and Excel
  • Ability to travel to periodic meetings and events, occasionally during evenings/weekends
  • Ability to work from the Caledonia, IL office at least two to three days per week
  • Superior writing and editing skills
  • Positive team player
  • Reliable self-starter, with strong ability to prioritize multiple responsibilities and meet deadlines

DESIRED QUALIFICATIONS (not required):

  • Marketing and media-relations experience
  • Volunteer and/or professional experience with sustainable agriculture issues, local food systems, agricultural education, and/or community organizing is preferable.
  • Finance or Business BA degree

TO APPLY:
Please familiarize yourself with our website at www.learngrowconnect.org. Then send your cover letter and resume to jobs@learngrowconnect.org or Angelic Organics Learning Center, 1547 Rockton Road, Caledonia IL 61011. If you submit your application via email, PDF format is preferred for all documents.  Include “Farmer Training Finance and Project Coordinator” in the subject line of the email.  No phone inquiries, please.