Executive Director: It is fair to say that Keltie Butler has her hands in many local pies. The Executive Director of Farmers’ Markets of Nova Scotia, Keltie has previously worked with the Food Action Committee of the Ecology Action Centre as well as Toronto Refugee Community Non-Profit Home and Housing and as an instructor with St. Lawrence College, teaching within the Sustainable Local Food Certificate online program. Thanks to many years of apprenticing and working on small-scale organic farms, as well as Common Roots Urban Farm, Keltie has more than whet her appetite for agriculture. In fact, in 2015 she and her partner Michael began market gardening, operating a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) of 17 shares in their first season. At the heart of her love of local food and farming is the unstoppable ability of food to bring people together regardless of language, culture, or age. Keltie is passionate about community development, food security, agriculture and she has a serious sweet tooth.
Director of Training: Michelle Wolf is a certified coach, education trainer, and Director of Training for Farmers’ Markets of Nova Scotia. She has worked with over 200 farm owners, managers, and entrepreneurs to help them grow successful markets and businesses through her extremely popular training programs and as private clients. Michelle owned and operated a profitable farm-based herb company for 20+ years and sold at farmers’ markets for 18 years, also managing a mid-size farmers’ market for six years and winning Market Manager of the Year. Michelle speaks at direct marketing, farmers’ market, organic agriculture and sustainable lifestyle conferences throughout North America, and we are proud that she is one of our own. She is a dynamic, engaging workshop facilitator with a wealth of organic production and agricultural business experience, and a sought-after motivational speaker on business and personal development topics. She holds a Master’s Degree from York University, is former president of Seeds of Diversity Canada, and now runs a training consulting company at www.WholeGreenHeart.com.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
President: Ashley Martin is a graduate of Saint Mary’s University with a degree in Environmental Studies and Biology. Working in the not-for-profit sector, Ashley has been involved in event coordination, fundraising and research. In 2009, she took over managing the Hubbards Farmers’ Market and, in 2011, she began managing the year-round Lunenburg Farmers’ Markets as well. Ashley continues in these positions, having become a mainstay and expert in the NS farmers’ market sector.
Treasurer: Laura Mulrooney, alongside her husband Master Baker Julien, own and operate Julien’s Patisserie & Bakery selling at a number of Nova Scotia farmers’ markets. Laura prides herself on making her customers feel at home.
Secretary: Donna Hopper spent part of her childhood in Germany where local markets and dairies abound. She travelled Europe with her parents and siblings in an old Opal station wagon with a little travel trailer, camping with the locals and shopping for fresh bread, veggies and produce at the nearest markets. Fast forward about 40ish years… Donna is now a resident of Lower Sackville and an artisan who works with her husband, Steve Hopper. She is currently a vendor (and supporter!) of two Nova Scotian farmers’ markets: the Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market and, occasionally, at the Wolfville Farmers’ Market. To this very day, one of her very favourite things in the whole wide world is to eat fresh market bread on a little wooden plate… just like she learned to do back in Germany.
Member at Large: Mike Bishop is the owner of Helen B’s Preserves and The Jam & Preserves Co. of Nova Scotia and is dedicated to the farmers’ market as the best place for local producers to connect and build relationships both with each other and with their customers. Mike and his wife Amelia made the leap of faith into the market and entrepreneurial lifestyle after a career spent in teaching and coaching basketball. Mike made a splash on the farm market scene in 2011 purchasing his family’s local farm market business and turning it into one of the provinces most recognized brands. Believing strongly in the value of authenticity, innovation and positive relationships, The Jam & Preserves Co. of Nova Scotia has become one of Atlantic Canada’s fastest growing companies.