SASA Welcomes 2017 Officers

Elisa Sumac Cardenas, Katherine van der Woude, Amelia Drake, Erika Rodbell and Robert Valek gather for SASA
Elisa Sumac Cardenas, Katherine van der Woude, Amelia Drake, Erika Rodbell and Robert Valek gather for SASA's first meeting of the year.

On Feb. 2, the Sustainable Agriculture Student Association held its first meeting of the year to honor a crop of new and returning officers. Leading the charge as SASA co-presidents, Morgan Bradley (MS/MCRP) and Erika Rodbell (MS) said that they look forward to building vital leadership skills while serving both the Iowa State and Ames communities.

“SASA will continue to be involved with Food and First, the Local Food Cycle and other events in our community,” Bradley said. “We hope to increase our presence in the online community this year and also hope to have a table at the Ames Main Street Farmers' Market, at least for a few Saturdays. We hope this will spread awareness about our organization. We will have awesome t-shirts and mugs to sell!”

With the help of Robert Valek (PhD), who returns for his second term as treasurer, SASA has already secured full funding for a group trip to the MOSES Organic Farming Conference later this month. Other projects and goals for the upcoming year include participating in the annual Symposium on Sustianability, designing a new logo and organizing a fundraiser and multi-course dinner at a local farm later this summer. In addition to Bradley, Rodbell and Valek, the 2017 SASA officers are:

Secretary: Amelia Drake is an undergraduate horticulture major with an emphasis on food crop production and management. She returned to her home state of Iowa after living across the U.S. and working as a musician.

Outreach Coordinator: Elisa Sumac Cardenas (PhD) is in her third year of study as a co-major in Sociology and Sustainable Agriculture. She works in public relations as a Women and Gender Studies graduate assistant and enjoyed serving as SASA secretary last year.

Food at First Coordinator: [Kristine Neu]() (PhD) co-majors in horticulture and sustainable agriculture and served as last year's GPSS Senator. Originally from Pelican Rapids, MN, her research focuses on improving high tunnel production.

GPSS Senator: Katherine van der Woude (MS) is a first year graduate student in Sustainable Agriculture and Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering.

Coordinating Committee Representative: Samuel Ikendi (MS/MCRP), is a first year graduate student in Sustainable Agriculture and Community and Regional Planning. Originally from Uganda, his interests include project monitoring and evaluation.