Our Staff and Board

We make healthy, locally grown food accessible to under-served Oregonians.

Rachael Ward (she/her)
Executive Director

Rachael joins Farmers Market Fund with over a decade of experience in the nonprofit sector at the intersection of nutrition, public health, and agriculture. She is passionate about tying the fields of food assistance and local food together to create equitable and inclusive environments where shoppers can connect with the people who grow their food. Rachael has a wide array of experiences with nutrition incentive programs like DUFB, ranging from hyper local to the national scale. She has been a shopper using SNAP, a farmers market manager, an administrator of Georgia’s statewide nutrition incentive programs, and most recently, a leader of technical assistance for the Nutrition Incentive Hub, supporting programs across the country. Outside of work Rachael can be found with her nose in a book, hands in the soil, or feet following paths through Oregon’s natural beauty.

Joel Caris (he/him)
Programs Manager

Joel Caris comes to Farmers Market Fund with over twelve years experience in local food systems work. He first discovered his love of
local food and farming while apprenticing on an organic vegetable farm on Whidbey Island in 2009, then spent the next five years growing and raising food on farms and ranches in Washington and Oregon. He joined the Tillamook-based community food systems nonprofit Food Roots in 2015 as the Development Director and helped grow the organization significantly over the next seven years. Joel is a gardener, long-time Grange member, food preserver, walker, reader, writer, enjoys camping, loves working with numbers, and appreciates how good food can bring people together. He has lived nearly all his life in the Northwest.

Heather Morrill (she/they)
Pilot Program Coordinator

Heather joins Farmers Market Fund to expand the Double Up Food Bucks program to farm stands as well as explore implementing a new system at farmers markets that would replace the physical “Food Bucks” with digital currency. They bring with them six seasons of farmers market management experience and a passion for coalition building and increasing access to local food. Heather also works for Montavilla Farmers Market as Community Engagement Manager.

Heather has spent much of her career collaborating with community members to develop partnerships and programs to meet community needs. They did not grow up shopping at farmers markets, but came to shop regularly, eat well and contribute to building a more resilient local food system because of SNAP match programming. Always connecting people, paying attention to threads and batting around big ideas, Heather loves to bring people together around food–both at the table and through advocacy work in support of local farmers. 

Most evenings, you can find Heather swimming (and water aerobicizing) at her local community center, trying out a new recipe or enjoying the same big batch of something for dinner all week long. When not thinking about food, she’s often dreaming of a dip in the ocean and one day farming flowers in Alaska.

Mallory Watson (she/her)
Double Up Program Coordinator

Mallory Watson was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, and she has been living in Oregon since 2008. With a background in nutrition, administrative work, and increasing food access though urban farming, coming to FMF just made sense for her! Since moving to Portland in 2012, she has worked with with multiple garden and nutrition education organizations around town, and she loves teaching kids about growing nutritious food in the garden. Mallory was introduced to farmers markets as a SNAP shopper and SNAP match participant. She has also worked as a market vendor, and still loves to visit her neighborhood farmers market as often as possible with her small child and large dog in tow. When she’s not working on Double Up Food Bucks, she enjoys veggie gardening, bike riding, and crafting.

The Board

Briana Arnold
Rede Group

Reeba Daniel
Keep Growing Seeds, Founder

Abby Farber
FarberWorks, Executive Consultant and Founder

Eliza Hallett
OHSU, Medicaid Policy Analyst

Ashley Hess
Oregon Farmers Markets Association, Executive Director

Katy Kolker
Portland Farmers Market, Executive Director 

Hannah Ladwig
Gorge Grown Food Network, Farmers Market Operations 

Ian Paik
Building Codes Division, Policy Analyst

Zoe Potts
OCHIN, Research Network Program Specialist

Amy Scholze
Columbia Gorge Health Council

Rich Schwartz
Alder Street Consulting, Business Consultant

Kelly Streit
OSU Extension Service, Senior Instructor

Sammi Teo
Oregon Food Bank, Public Policy Advocate

Special Acknowledgement

Rosemarie Sweet
Co-founder & Former Board President

Rosemarie co-founded Farmers Market Fund and served as Board President through 2015. She was also on the Board of Portland Farmers Market from 2006 to 2011, serving as its president for two years.

Rosemarie organized and co-chaired the Portland/Multnomah Food Policy Council from August 2001 through Dec. 2004. This Council advised the City of Portland and Multnomah County on policies promoting a healthy and sustainable regional food system. She also worked with the Healthy Eating by Design program on food access and regional food planning. Other consulting work included facilitating the development of the Zenger Farm project and working with stakeholders in Lincoln City to improve their farmers market and to connect local growers with the area’s institutional purchasers.

Prior to working on sustainable food system issues, Rosemarie Sweet was the founder and executive director of Sustainable Communities Northwest (SCNW). This non-profit corporation provided affordable housing to people of low and moderate income in the Portland area, with an emphasis on ecologically sound building and promoting sustainable lifestyle choices. Prior to that, Ms. Sweet practiced law for 17 years.