BC Association of Farmers' markets
Supporting BC farmers and sustaining our local food supply means ensuring we have land to farm and fresh food to eat. It's a way to nurture the places we live and visit.

Speaker Bios

Speaker Bios


Moira Teevan, Vancity

Moira has worked with Vancity for over 20 years in various capacities supporting Vancity’s work in community investment, corporate social responsibility and the development of their internal environmental practices.  Moira’s current role is Portfolio Manager, Community Investment – local and organic food sector.  She works on the Impact Business Development Team and is responsible for supporting impact business members, in the local and organic food sector, to thrive and prosper so that they will be financially sustainable.  Part of this work involves encouraging more favourable environments for impact businesses to operate, by growing consumer and capital markets, and developing the sector by targeted investing in businesses, not-for-profits and sector initiatives to help promote a viable and sustainable local food system.  Moira also manages the Vancity enviroFund program, a grant program supported by Vancity Visa.  The fund invested 1 million dollars last year into the local community to support the development of a resilient sustainable local food system.

Session: Business Support and Financing Options for Local Small Growers and Processors

Dave Abernethey, Summerfield Farms

Struggled for 30 years trying to make money with cattle, finally figured it out, this is how.

Session: Meeting Requirements for Vending Fresh Meat at a Farmers' Market

Andrew Arkesteyn-Vogler, Crisp Organics

Andrew Arkesteyn-Vogler is the Co-Owner of Crisp Organics Ltd, which is a certified organic farm in Abbotsford.  Crisp Organics operates an 11 acre vegetable which produces year round with a particular focus on fresh greens in the winter season.

Session: Growing for Year Round Markets

Chris Bodnar, Close to Home Organics

Chris has been farming at Glen Valley Organic Farm for eight years. He operates Close to Home Organics with his wife, Paige. Over the past two years, Chris has researched and tested a variety of paper and electronic record-keeping systems and enjoys sharing this information with other growers.

Session: Record keeping for Farmers at Farmers Markets

Richard Bullock, Agricultural Land Commission

Richard Bullock is a Kelowna agriculturalist with significant knowledge of orchard and agri-tourism operations. He was active in industry organizations and has served as president of the BC Fruit Growers' Association, BC Tree Fruits Ltd., and Sun-Rype Products Ltd., and as Director of the Canadian Federation of Agriculture. Mr. Bullock has extensive experience in international consulting including the production and processing of agricultural crops. He is a former member of the British Columbia Marketing Board and the past Chair of the British Columbia Farm Industry Review Board.

Wylie Bystedt, Quesnel Farmers Market

In addition to being a rancher, Wylie and Coyote Acres Ranch also supplies meat through farmers markets, retail, restaurant and pet food companies. Each level of sales has its own dynamics and price points. Wylie is also the General Manager of Good For You Market, an independent retail grocery store that focuses on purchasing from local producers, including farmers markets vendors.

Session: Beyond the Market - Expanding Your Sales

Robyn Carlson, Vancouver Farmers Markets

Robyn Carlson is a district manager with Vancouver Farmers Markets and has managed 4 different market locations.  She has managed 5 market locations and has a regular role in recruitment and jurying of prepared food vendors.

Session: Tools for Recruiting, Jurying and Approving Vendors

Robin Crowder, 21 Acres Center for Local Food and Sustainable Living

Robin is the director of development and marketing for the 21 Acres Center for Local Foods and Sustainable Living.  Crowder’s expertise lies in sustainable marketing initiatives, building supply and demand for local foods, and developing new programs in a wide variety of settings with a conscious attention to environmental issues, climate change and limiting energy use. In her prior position with the University of North Carolina, Crowder directed research related to local foods, agriculture and economic impact projects addressing health disparities.  She managed an Innovation Laboratory titled, Linking Local Sustainable Farming and Health, which examined the question, “Can eating local address obesity, the environment and economic viability?” Crowder has served on a team to write and manage federal, state and foundation-funded grants related to agriculture, food insecurity and food justice projects and played a key role in community-based participatory research. Crowder has an extensive background leading entrepreneurial initiatives with place-based traditional and social marketing strategies that also take into account the dynamics of behavioral economics.  Her work has included: fundraising campaigns; local foods branding; managing packaging and promotion design; creating direct farm-to-consumer buying opportunities; building wholesale relationships; directing public relations; orchestrating major special events; planning cooking and nutrition classes; and conducting educational programming. Crowder served as operations manager the Bellingham Farmers Market for seven years and helped farmers and small businesses position themselves to attract a greater customer base including both wholesale and retail buyers. Prior to that Crowder worked for major health care and senior housing companies leading their corporate marketing departments.  Crowder provides ongoing consultation to urban planning and public health organizations, commercial businesses and professional services firms and volunteers for farmers market membership organizations on policy and advocacy issues.


Melanie Golder, Liquor Control and Licensing Branch

Melanie Golder is a Senior Policy Analyst with the Liquor Control and Licensing Branch. 

Session: BC Beer, Wine and Liquor Sales at Farmers Markets

Roberta LaQuaglia, Vancouver Farmers Markets

Roberta LaQuaglia is the operations manager for Vancouver Farmers Markets and has over 10 years experience working with farmers markets. 

Session: Tools for Recruiting, Jurying and Approving Vendors

Andrea Lawseth, AEL Agroecological Consulting

Andrea Lawseth is the Principal/Owner of AEL Agroecological Consulting and a Professional Agrologist with over 11 years of experience in food system and agricultural land use planning, sustainable agricultural promotion, organic certification, and food security. Andrea was one of the founding directors of the Langley Community Farmers Market and worked as the Market Manager for the Surrey Urban Farmers Market in 2011. She has had the unique opportunity to experience farmers market challenges at both the Board and staff level in two very different market environments. Andrea has also worked in the non‐profit, public, and private sectors as an Executive Director, project manager, event planner, and informal educator. As an informal educator in the non‐profit field, Andrea honed her skills in presenting to a variety of audiences in many different environments, from school classrooms to agricultural fields. Andrea is also trained in Problem Based Learning techniques of facilitation; including group shared visioning exercises, and conflict resolution.

Session: Market Integrity - Protecting the Farmer's Market Brand

Carolyn Morris, Squamish Farmers' Market

Carolyn Morris has managed the Squamish Farmers' Market for 7 years.  She is an elementary school teacher and is actively involved in an abundance of community pursuits. Carolyn is passionate about fostering a sustainable means of living and empowering others in their potential.

Session: GMO-Free Farmers' Markets

Andrew Murray, Royal City Farmers‘ Market

Andrew is the founder and past President of the Royal City Farmers Market in New Westminster. He is also the founder of the New West Docfest.

Sesion: GMO-Free Farmers' Markets

Lenore Newman, University of Fraser Valley

Lenore is an Associate Professor of Geography at the University of the Fraser Valley, and the Canada Research Chair in Food Security and Environment. She lives in Vancouver, BC, and writes and researches in the areas of urban food systems, peri-urban land use, farmers’ markets, and Canadian cuisine. Currently, Lenore is completing a book exploring Canada's culinary regions.

Sesion: A Discussion on BC's Agricultural Land Reserve

Kevin L Page, KLP Enterprises

Kevin Page is a retired Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sergeant. His career has spanned many business lines within the policing environment from being a Uniformed General Duty Constable and later a Watch Commander at a busy Lower Mainland Detachment. He has worked extensively on plain clothe Sections within Federal Drug, Immigration and Criminal Intelligence Units of the RCMP. His career has also taken him on many international investigations mostly in Latin America. He has been seconded to three United Nations Mission over the years, twice to Haiti and once to Guatemala. Sergeant Page was selected as the Vulnerability Risk Assessment manager during the Vancouver 2010 Olympics and has retired in 2012 after over 28 years of service.

Session: Threat / Risk / Vulnerability Assessment in the Farmers Market Environment

Vanessa Perrodou, Farm to School BC

Vanessa is a registered dietitian and health promotion consultant. She has experience within the BC food system as the former Marketing and Communications Coordinator for the Centre for Sustainable Food Systems at the UBC Farm; within the provincial government as a former Policy Analyst for the BC Ministry of Health Public Health Nutrition Team; and most recently within the BC school health promotion world, as the former Healthy Eating Specialist with Action Schools! BC. Vanessa is passionate about increasing access to fresh local food within the BC school system, and supporting the growth of healthy, food literate learners. She can be reached at farmtoschoolbc@gmail.com.

Session: Connecting to Community Through Farm to School

Jen Pleadwell, Vancouver Farmers Markets

Jen Pleadwell is the Admin and Development Manager for Vancouver Farmers Markets. She has managed the craft jury intake process for VFM for 5 years and is a craft artisan herself.

Session: Tools for Recruiting, Jurying and Approving Vendors

Grant Rice, Surrey Urban Farmers Market Board (Former) 

Grant Rice was a founding member of the Surrey Urban Farmers Market and was on the board until 2013. He was on the planning committee for the Flavours of Surrey event between 2009 and 2011. Grant is a local food activist who has fought for the protection of farmland and the rights of farmers that make their lving off those lands. He attends the Surrey's AAC meetings on a regular basis to keep abreast of events and policies that affect Surrey's farmers. He is currently on the board of Vibrant Surrey, a poverty reduction group; is a member of the Surrey White Rock Food Action Coalition; and is a member of the Surrey Citizens Transportation Initiative. Grant recently completed his Master of Urban Studies degree at SFU, where his thesis examined the role of the fruit and vegetable processing sector in the Lower Mainland's food system.

Session: Market Integrity - Protecting the Farmer's Market Brand

Kirstin Richter, Principal Creative Director, The Social Agency

With a BA in Communications (SFU) and over a decade of working in the digital media space, Kirstin has been able to combine her two career passions at The Social Agency where she works with clients such as White Spot, BC Dairy Foundation and Fraser Health to implement and manage social media campaigns. Kirstin spent 8+ years at New Media BC where she was the Communications and Program Manager. Kirstin was also the founding Creative Director of the Vancouver International Digital Festival (VIDFEST), which she oversaw from 2004 to 2008.

Kirstin has been a board director for both Wired Woman and the New Forms Media Society. Most recently she joined the instructing team at UBC Continuing Studies, teaching in their Award of Achievement in Social Media program. In addition to her BA, Kirstin holds a Diploma in Executive Management from Simon Fraser University.

Session: Social Media Toolkit

Laura Smit, Vancouver Farmers Markets

Laura has been coordinating volunteers for as long as she remembers. She has worked in academic service-learning, non-profit settings with Katimavik and Evergreen, and has been coordinating volunteers for all of the Vancouver Farmers Markets since 2010.

Session: Attracting & Maintaining a Talented & Diverse Volunteer Network

Darren Stott, Green Chain Consulting

Darren has over 15 years of experience in the food retail industry. This includes store management, logistics, marketing and purchasing for one of the largest Co-op retailers in the UK. He was also a retail analytics consultant for blue chip retailers and manufacturers such as Safeway, P&G and Unilever in the UK. Darren served as Director of Purchasing for the largest online organic home delivery company in North America, with 7 locations including Victoria. In 2010 Darren started Greenchain Consulting, to use his food retail Blue Chip experience, to support BC local food initiatives through business planning, business strategizing, purchasing policies, operations and best practice research.

Session: Small/Medium Farm Product Distribution: Filling Distribution Gap Between Farmers and Buyers

Ron Tamis, Rondriso Farms

Ron Tamis operates 100-acres of farmland in Surrey, 43 acres that his father bought in 1980, and the remaining leased from other area farms. Prior to becoming a full-time farmer in 2008, Ron did crop management and custom operations for large farms in the region. At Rondriso Farms all their BCSPCA Certified cattle are born, raised and finished on the farm. They contain no antibiotics or growth hormones and are milk fed, grass fed, and grass/grain finished. He produces sweet corn, potatoes, carrots, beets, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, onions, parsnips, zucchini, patty pan squash, winter squash and some peas and beans. His wife Pam runs a store out of their farm and they also operate a successful pumpkin patch, which is open to school groups during the week and the general public on weekends. Ron has been selling vegetables at the Surrey Urban Farmers Market since its inception in 2008 and is the Vice President of its board.  Ron also sells at the Vancouver Winter Farmer's Market and can be found occasionally at the Trout Lake Market in the summer. Ron is currently on the board of the BCAFM.

Session: Market Integrity - Protecting the Farmer's Market Brand


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