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June 2015 Newsletter
Did you know that if every Alaskan spent $5 per week on Alaska Grown products year round, it would have a $188 million impact on Alaska's economy?

This summer, take the Alaska Grown Challenge and spend $5 each week on products grown and produced in Alaska.

The Alaska Farm Bureau's Executive Director, Amy Seitz, came up with the idea for the challenge with Heidi Chay, of the Kenai Soil and Water Conservation District. Chay and Seitz believe that the challenge will bring people together to support their local economy. Chay told radio station KDLL that "if we’re serious about diversifying our economy and eating healthy and eating lighter on the planet, we would really invest our food dollars here at home.”

We at the AFPC think that the challenge is a great idea. Summer is the easiest time of year to find Alaska-grown food at farmer's markets and sometimes even at grocery stores. For a list of farmers' markets around Alaska, look here. And you can help by spreading the word on Facebook and by email
Palmer, Homer and Anchorage Town Hall Meeting Reports Now Available
View the reports for Palmer, Homer, and Anchorage Town Halls. Thank you to everyone who attended our town halls in Palmer in February! This report summarizes and outlines the public input we received from participants. Residents shared what they liked, disliked, and envisioned for the future of their food systems. Please share this report widely, and discuss the results and questions posed within it in your communities.
AFPC's New VISTA and Other News
AFPC is planning its 2016 Food Conference.  We would love to hear from our members about topics you would be interested in hearing about at the conference.  Please let us know by Facebook or Email at the links below.  We look forward to talking to you!

Introducing AFPC's New AmeriCorps VISTA Volunteer
Lastly, I'm Sam Ford, AFPC's newest coordinator, and I wanted to say hello.  I am part of the Americorps VISTA program and have replaced the amazing Patrick Likely.  I moved to Anchorage about two months ago and I have already met so many wonderful and committed advocates for a healthier, more sustainable food system in Alaska.  I am looking forward to working with the Governing Board and with all of you this year! 
 
Meet the New Members of the AFPC Board!
Angie Freeman Shephard, the superintendent at the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ Matanuska Experiment Farm in Palmer, grew up helping her family raise wheat and peas as a fifth-generation landowner in the Palouse region near Moscow, Idaho. After earning her BS in Rangeland Ecology and Management from Oregon State University, Angie worked as a rancher for 12 years, raising beef cattle and managing timberland across four western states. After earning her MS in Natural Resource Management from the University of Idaho, she managed the 34,000 acre Zumwalt Prairie Preserve for the Nature Conservancy of Oregon. Her work included prescribed burns, fee hunting, weed treatment and grazing management. When her Alaskan born and raised husband, Phil Shephard, wanted to return home seven years ago, the couple and their three children headed north.  In Anchorage, Angie was the regional grants officer for Providence Health and Services applying for and managing over 6 million dollars worth of grants annually and helping raise funds for the charitable Providence Foundation. Angie's goal as superintendent is to manage the farm well and facilitate research, outreach and education so that the resources of the farm can benefit the community. In her free time, Angie enjoys hiking, camping, playing music and participating in family activities.

Angie is one of three new members on our Governing Board - keep a look out for introductions to Melissa Sikes and Brian Himmelbloom over the next few months.  We are excited to welcome them all aboard!
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