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Johnson County Farmers Market elects new officers for 2017 season

By Jana Jones

The Johnson County Farmers Market had their annual potluck meeting April 6th in order to keep the members abreast of the plans for the 2017 season.  On the agenda was the election of new officers.  Richard Calkins was elected president.  Mr. Calkins brings new excitement and ideas on how to enrich our market and our community.  Calkins owns Harbin Hills Farm, which is used as a business model for others and operates the county’s first CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) co-op.
Linda Woodard was elected vice-president.  Ms. Woodard is a Johnson County native and has owned LeAnder Farms with her husband for eight years.  They offer blackberries, raspberries, eggs, canned goods, herbs, produce as well as beautiful stained glass pieces and carved crafts at the market.
Dennis Shekinah joins us as our new secretary.  Mr. Shekinah has been a farmer’s market supporter since our inception in 2009.  He has volunteered as our web administrator and photographer for several years and we are grateful for his service.
Sonyia Douglas was re-elected treasurer.  Ms. Douglas has served as the market treasurer for four years.  Douglas owns Sweet Spring Farm offering organic produce, eggs and pasture raised chickens to order and has been involved with the JCFM since 2010.
Not pictured is another board member, Tamara McNaughton who will serve again this year as member at large.  Ms. McNaughton was one of the original founders of the JCFM in 2009 and now works for Appalachian Sustainable Development (ASD) in Abingdon, Virginia, which serves the Central Appalachia area.  The ASD mission is to transition Appalachia to a more resilient economy and a healthier population by supporting local agriculture, exploring new economic opportunities and connecting people to healthy food.  We are fortunate to have Ms. McNaughton still actively involved with our farmers market to keep us abreast of opportunities available to Appalachian farmers and our market.  Ms. McNaughton also owns TNT Farm N Greenhouse located in Meadowview, Virginia.
We welcome our new officers and look forward to a stellar 2017 season!  Our opening day is Saturday May 6th from 9 to 12 at the Courthouse Parking lot across from the Mountain City Post Office.