Board of Directors
Paul Helgeson, Vice President
Paul has farming in his blood. He grew up on a small farm in Iowa and for the past 45 years has operated a small farm near Connorsville, Wisconsin. He has been a member of Farmer to Farmer from its beginning in the late 1980’s and has been on the board for the past decade or so. Paul worked as a renewable energy development engineer before retiring back to the farm in 2008. He has a great interest in helping empower the indigenous people of Central America as well as refugees from that area in the US. In the past years he has traveled to Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, and Cuba.
Pete Huff, Secretary/Fundraising
Pete Huff is a Program Officer with the Wallace Center at Winrock International, where he manages the Pasture Project. This initiative works with farmers, land managers, and support organizations throughout the U.S. Upper Midwest to provide research and technical assistance on the transition of agricultural acres to regenerative management through adaptive, multi-paddock livestock grazing and associated practices. Pete is originally from Central Indiana and has worked in the agriculture and food system sector for the past 12 years. Most recently, he served as the Director of Food Systems at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy. Prior to this, he worked on food waste/composting, urban agriculture, and food policy projects in Australia and managed organic farms and sustainable agriculture education programs in California. He holds a Bachelors of Science in Honors Environmental Management and a Bachelors of Arts in Honors History from Indiana University-Bloomington, as well as a Masters of Public Affairs from University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. He has previously served as Board Vice President for the Big Sur Education Council in Big Sur, California and as a board member for the ARC Retreat Center in Cambridge, Minnesota. Pete is a gardener, beekeeper, and long-distance cyclist. He currently lives with his beautiful partner, Steph, and their cats, Whyla and Vinny, in Menomonie, WI. .
Brenda Betz-Stoltz, Outreach
Brenda lives in the rural Colfax and part time in Idaho with husband, Dick. She is a retired sixth grade, middle school, teacher, and has used her profession to take advantage of many opportunities to work for the education of children, especially girls, around the world. She has spent years traveling in Latin America and Asia working for social justice, education for all children/people, and supporting sustainable tourism – especially in a kayak. Brenda is an active board and has worked primarily with our student scholarships program. "It is an honor and a pleasure to help empower these wonderful young people.”
Arthur Kneeland, Treasurer
Arthur teaches at UW-Stout and is an Agricultural Entomologist. Showing students the wonders of the natural world is part of what keeps him going. Working on the board of Farmer to Farmer is one of the ways he is striving to make this world a better place.
Andy Gaertner, President
Andy is a farmer and teacher at the Lake Country Land School in Connorsville, Wisconsin. Andy was in Honduras with the PeaceCorps in the late 1990's and has continued to work with the same farmers since that time. He has deep friendships in Honduras, is fluent in Spanish and leads our work with the farmers there.
Jody Slocum, Newsletter
Jody lives in rural West Wisconsin with husband, Kurt Buetow. She is co-owner of Cultural Cloth a retail store in Maiden Rock, WI representing artisans from 23 countries, with a focus on women artisan. The combination of her passion for social justice and textiles brought her to join Farmer to Farmer in 1992 and traveled with the first delegation to Santiago Atitlan. She has been actively involved with F2F ever since. The coffee business started in her barn in 2000 out of a need to help our Maya friends in Guatemala when prices plummeted internationally. “I receive far more from our Guatemala and Honduras friends than I can ever give. I feel so fortunate to be part of this work.”
Cathleen McCoy, Organizational
Cathleen McCoy has been a part of Farmer to Farmer since the beginning. She lives with her husband Patrick outside Menomonie. Cathleen is a health coach and co-owner of The Village of White Pine.