WHO I AM
I am a trans-disciplinary researcher working at the intersection of all subjects connected to soil. My research interests include soil biology, farmer health, community health, policy, climate change and rural development. Soil is the start of the supply chain, the source of 95% of human food, and the third largest reservoir of carbon on the planet. We are losing soils globally at an alarming rate, and I seek solutions to restore balance and health to these systems.
I have a background in biochemistry, and spent 20 years working with the BC provincial public sector in six unique ministries. In 2019, I found my way to the Ministry of Agriculture, where my life changed forever. I discovered the incredible opportunity to capture carbon in agricultural soils, and the wide range of benefits this afforded to soil quality, plant health, and ecosystem functions. I also began to wonder if the health of agricultural soils played a role in the health of farmers, in the same way that gut health confers benefits to individuals in terms of their mental and physical health. It was clear to me that government policies were oriented to large scale producers, and did little to recognize the farmer beyond their abilities as an "economic entity."
My work aims to bring new perspectives to the policy conversation, to recognize the important role of farmers' health in their stewardship of soil, ecosystems and food security. Farmers are on the front line of climate change and experiencing more than financial pressures in their day to day lives. Carbon rich soils teem with unbelievable complex and diverse biology that we are only beginning to understand, they hold more water, are more resilient to extreme temperatures, and require less chemical intervention than degraded soils.
I am inspired by the opportunity to capture carbon in agricultural soils, to create benefits for farmers, ecosystems, communities and consumers. Understanding the relationships between soil quality and farmers' health is the starting point for my research.