Reflections from Previous Participants


Aaron Ristow

"I have a better sense of what is important to me in my work. It's not just the type of work that I want to do, but the kind of environment where I want to work in and the people I want to be surrounded by."

—​ NY Agricultural Stewardship Program Manager, American Farmland Trust


Adrianne Traub

"This educational program directly benefited my quality of life. I learned a great deal about myself and how I can bring more of my whole-self to my food system development work. It helped me manage burnout and also identify areas of my work that I want to further pursue."

— Project Manager, Seven Valleys Health Coalition


Bethany Wallis

"The program has given me permission to say yes to things that benefit myself as a whole person, not just the compartments I had been functioning in. In doing so it has also opened me to see things again and truly take time to appreciate the wonder and beauty around me."

— Director, NOFA NY



"Unlike other programs designed for networking and community building, Reconnecting with Purpose (RwP) open the space to honesty and trust at the individual and professional level. I have experienced that it is through this mechanism that we can relearn how to listen and regenerate empathy while slowing down in/our effort to be reactive in providing advice or trying to change the mind of others. Also, open and thoughtful questions create a sense of leaning on each other rather than feeling the burden, and these emotional, design thinking experiences help me improve my cultural competence talks."

— President & Co-Founder, K'ALLAM'P (Kah-jahm-pah)


Lucy Spence

"The reconnecting with purpose program gave me incredible insight into the passion and strength of individuals in the food systems field. It also inspired me to become a productive member of this community to support and advocate for local food producers. Moreover, I feel less alone with many of the burdens I feel with this job and I feel as if I have the tools to help alleviate some of those burdens."

— SYRAP Program Director, Refugee & Immigrant Self-Empowerment (RISE)


Maya Marie

"More so now than before I'm working towards just being. I'm passionate about the work I do and the folks I get to work with, but this program has supported my journey in taking a look at myself outside of productivity and external expectations."

— Lead Collaborator/Founder, Deep Roots Project