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Rodeo Farm Coordinator

Requisition Number: 
Windy City Harvest
Job Status: 
Windy City Harvest is looking for a coordinator to oversee our Rodeo Farm located at 26th Place and Rockwell. This is an intensive 1-acre production farm and 1-acre composting operation that also houses a small apiary, 1,200-square-foot hoophouse, and milkweed research project. The purpose of this farm is to grow the highest quality produce for our wholesale partner, meet a sales goal, and generate compost and honey, while creating a safe, supportive, and productive job-training ground for multiple levels of Windy City Harvest program participants, mainly the Corps and Apprenticeship. students. Please refer to our website for details about the Corps and Apprenticeship program:
Duties and Responsibilities: 

In this role, you will be responsible for the following:

  • Implementing a crop plan and following all dates to meet sales goals on a 1-acre farm
  • Oversee a production schedule of activities, working with one Corps crew leader and Apprenticeship instructor
  • Generate weekly harvest availability in cooperation with the sales team
  • Enforce Windy City Harvest staff standards and performance
  • Provide scheduled feedback on farm operations team
  • Manage hoophouse and season extension production—venting, irrigation, hoophouse, low tunnels
  • Maintain and troubleshoot drip irrigation system
  • Follow a weekly production schedule of irrigation, seeding, transplanting, harvest, IPM monitoring, thinning, cultivation, and weed management
  • Monitor and maintain windrow composting system
  • Receive wood chips and food scraps for compost operations
  • Monitor and maintain small apiary with participants (four to five hives)
  • Keep perimeter of site maintained to Chicago Botanic Garden aesthetics
  • Order and code all site compost shipments and other amendments as necessary
  • Keep an organized and inventoried tool storage shed and wash pack
  • Lead and support with harvest, post-harvest handling, and food safety procedures, following strict grading and packing standards multiple days a week
  • Maintain accurate records of sales, food safety, general safety, IPM, and production
  • Manage site inventory and machinery including bobcat, compost screener, generator, irrigation, and small farm tools
  • Manage purchases within budget, track in Excel
  • Report weekly on-site operations to team
  • Act as a supportive program, job, and agriculture resource to program participants, staff, community residents, media, and collaborative partners

Our ideal candidate will have the following:

  • Two or more years of sustainable farming and management experience; a certificate in field is preferred
  • Familiarity with all aspects of coordinating a sustainable farm site to the standards of the Chicago Botanic Garden
  • Commitment to the mission of Windy City Harvest
  • Commitment to being a supportive resource for program participants, community residents, and project partners
  • A valid driver's license with good driving record
  • The ability to work independently to coordinate site production and as part of a dedicated urban agriculture training team
  • A detail-oriented, flexible, dependable, and punctual work ethic; this position will require weekend hours
  • The ability to lift 50 pounds and capacity to work in all weather conditions, performing manual labor
  • Experience following and tracking budgets accurately with Excel
  • Excellent communication skills: email, phone, person, etc.
  • Train and educate participants in basic urban farming skills
  • Manage harvest days and production schedules in a timely manner
  • Lead and train participants to perform site tours
Physical Demands: 
This is an urban farm setting. Staff members must be able to work on their feet all day in all weather conditions, performing manual labor. There will be frequent lifting, standing, walking, bending, farm tool usage, and machinery operation, as well as speaking to public, staff members, and program participants. There will also be daily use of bobcat and post-harvesting handling equipment. Staff is required to lift, push, and pull items up to 50 pounds.
Why Apply?: 

Come work in a setting that is like no other as you support our mission: We cultivate the power of plants to sustain and enrich life. Take the first step toward being one of the employees who make the Garden one of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County. Apply today. Please note that applicants who do not meet the required qualifications will not be considered.

Disclaimer: The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification. They are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and qualifications required of personnel so classified.