The Farm on Ogden is designed as a community hub—a farm and learning space for Lawndale Christian Health Center (LCHC) patients, community residents, and urban farm entrepreneurs. Located in North Lawndale, the facility includes a large-scale aquaponics system to support year-round fish and leafy greens production and training, a commercial kitchen to prepare vegetables and develop value-added products distributed through the market, cold storage to assist with managing aggregation and distribution of 130,000 pounds of produce, an enclosed produce-packing station, staff offices, and a community classroom. The North Lawndale Youth Farm is part of the campus. The Farm on Ogden employs Youth Farm high school students and Corps reentry participants and serves as the distribution hub for VeggieRx's prescription produce partnership with LCHC. Learn more about Windy City Harvest programming here: https://www.chicagobotanic.org/urbanagriculture/
In this role, you will be responsible for the following:
Marketing and Communications
- Ensure signage, displays, and marketing are educational and consistent with the Chicago Botanic Garden aesthetic.
- Communicate new and ongoing special programs and promotions to customers.
- Inform customers of federal benefits accepted as payment.
- Track food assistance transaction data, train participants to track data.
- Communicate the importance of food assistance programs to our shoppers, vendors, farmers, and supporters.
- Promote Windy City Harvest market on social media weekly.
- Act as a resource to community residents, program participants, and media as needed.
- Lead tours of the Farm on Ogden as needed.
- Report out on area updates in weekly meetings.
- Perform administrative duties and provide regular reports to management.
Customer Service Skills and Training
- Provide friendly and efficient customer service by demonstrating sincerity, patience, and respect in all customer interactions and by thanking customers for their business.
- Train program participants and staff to process customer transactions quickly, accurately, and efficiently and to bag groceries for customers while being friendly and attentive to customers’ needs.
- Workforce development is key—this staff person will be training participants from youth development, transitional jobs, and apprenticeship programs, continuously throughout the year, shifting from season to season.
- Train participants and staff in proper marketing and retail procedures.
- Purchase, stock, and keep accurate inventory of department merchandise in POS system.
- Operate and manage inventory with POS system and ensure all forms of tender and coupons are properly handled.
- Complete daily paperwork and cash deposits.
- Report product ordering and quality issues to the sales manager.
- Maintain cleanliness of department and oversee ordering of all custodial supplies through vendor.
- Handle duties of opening and closing market daily.
- Comply with safety procedures and report unsafe conditions to management.
- Coordinate with the kitchen coordinator and sales coordinator to stock Windy City Harvest products, including a grab-and-go line of products.
- Order products and coordinate shipments from local farms and businesses in the Chicago area by developing relationships with local vendors including Windy City Harvest incubators.
- Maintain records and physical space in accordance with the city of Chicago health code for a retail food establishment.
Key Garden competencies/behaviors desired:
- Communicates in a manner that gains the trust and support of others at all levels.
- Works effectively with others despite differences of opinion and style; builds alliances.
- Has a tolerance for opposing points of view.
- Strives for collaboration. Works cooperatively, as a positive contributor to the team.
- Demonstrates a positive attitude and shows kindness in all workplace interactions.
- Makes decisions appropriate for level of responsibility.
- Can effectively adapt to change; can shift gears comfortably; is flexible, and embraces change with a “can-do” attitude.
- Is self-aware; knows personal strengths and weaknesses; seeks feedback and is open to negative feedback as an opportunity for improvement.
- Is cool under pressure; can be counted on to hold things together during tough times; can handle stress; is not knocked off balance by the unexpected; is a settling influence during a crisis.
- Recognizes problems, constructively identifies and articulates solutions.
- Picks up garbage when it is seen regardless of position.
- Follows safety guidelines to ensure a safe working environment and consistently demonstrates safe work behaviors.
- Is welcoming of new hires.
Our ideal candidate will have the following:
- Management experience in a small grocery market environment with wholesale purchasing, merchandising and managing inventory.
- Demonstrated experience engaging with workforce development programming.
- Basic knowledge of sustainable agriculture and local food systems.
- Familiarity with POS systems and forms of federal benefits as payment (LINK/SNAP, Senior Coupons, WIC Coupons).
- Familiarity with proper cash handling and deposit procedures.
- Flexibility and comfort working with shifting demands and schedules. Evening and Saturday shifts are part of this position.
- Ability to lift up to 50 pounds and stand for a full shift.
- Positive, can-do attitude and an interest in the intersection of community engagement and urban agriculture.
- Ability to educate customers on seasonal produce availability and local food systems.
- Excellent customer service and communication with community members and Windy City Harvest team.
- Fluency in English and Spanish, written and verbal, is required.
- Valid driver’s license with clean driving record; comfortable driving large vehicles.
*Chicago Botanic Garden requires all existing employees be fully COVID-19 vaccinated by October 15, 2021; hires after this date must be fully vaccinated upon hire.*
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.
The Chicago Botanic Garden is a M/F, Disabled, and Vet EEO/AA Employer.
We are an Equal Opportunity Employer and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, status as a veteran, and basis of disability or any other federal, state or local protected class.
In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, the Chicago Botanic Garden does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its programs or activities, including in employment or admissions. Please call (847) 835-8264 to contact our Title IX coordinator should you have questions or concerns.