MEET OUR VOLUNTEERS!

We are fortunate to have the dedication and commitment of many wonderful volunteers. As you can see, their backgrounds and interests are quite diverse and without them we wouldn’t be able to do what we do.

Collin Rodarte
SFUA Volunteer – Farm Team

Studying Food and Science with an emphasis in Brewing at Saddleback College
His passion is brewing beer and plans to attend the Davis’ Brewmaster Program
Favorite Beer: Duchesse de Bougogne Sour
Also works at several Farmer’s Markets, including Laguna Beach, Long Beach & Irvine Regional Park


Aaron Pluff
SFUA Volunteer – Farm Team

B.S. Commerce-Marketing, Niagara University
Working on Masters of Business Administration, Syracuse University
Former Infantryman, United State Marine Corps
Favorite Vegetable: Sweet Potato


Samantha Bennett
SFUA Volunteer – Farm Team

B.S. BioChemstry University of California Riverside
Assistant Chemist at Trilink Biotechnology
Hopes to earn Masters in Food Science
Favorite Homeopathic Cure: She loves skin care remedies! Her favorite is to use Apple Cider Vinegar mixed with Clay powder for facial masks.


Nicolas Jean
SFUA Volunteer – Farm Team

Currently working with Eric Cutter and Brent Morreale at Alegria Farms, learning plant health, regenerative farming methods, vermicomposting and modern intensive farming techniques and equipment such as the SoxxBoxx aeroponic system.

Urban Farm Enthusiast, Permaculture Design Certified

Studying Landscape Design – Orange Coast College, Volunteer at the Ecology Center

Favorite Animal:  I love arthrodpods


Michelle Mareks
SFUA Volunteer – Farm Team

Bioregionalist, Permaculture Landscape Designer, Artist
Sales associate at Tree of Life Native Plant Nursery, San Juan Capistrano
Favorite Native plant: Dodecatheon clevelandii -Padre’s Shooting Stars


Nikola Knaeps
SFUA Volunteer – Farm Team

Graduated from Newport Harbor High School
Currently pursuing his passion in film and modeling
Hopes to make a movie that will make audiences laugh till they explode
Favorite hobby: Adventuring and exploring the unknown


Bryce Frost
SFUA Volunteer – Farm Team

B.S. Horticulture Iowa State University
Master of Landscape Architecture University of Oklahoma
Landscape Designer at ima Design Inc.
Favorite Scent in the Garden: The blossoms of any citrus plant


Laurel Skinner
SFUA Volunteer – Farm Team

B.S Health Science CSULB
Completed Permaculture Designer certification in August 2016
Yoga teacher and Clerical Assistant
Attending graduate school at Cal Poly Pomona pursuing Masters in Landscape Architecture.
Hobbies: Sailing as an alumni member of the CSULB sailing association, practicing yoga, and listening to audiobooks.


Twyla Briley
SFUA Volunteer – Orchard Crop Rescuer for Bracken’s Kitchen

BS Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University
MBA, Stanford University
Management Consultant in Life Sciences R&D
Favorite Food to Rescue:  Citrus grown by friends and neighbors


Dr. Rick Fischel, MD, Ph.D
SFUA Volunteer – Farm Crop Rescuer for Bracken’s Kitchen

Board Certified Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgeon
Former Director of Thoracic Oncology at Hoag and St. Joseph’s Hospital
UCLA Medical School and University of Minnesota
Past President and Board Member of American Lung Association, Orange County

A SPECIAL THANK YOU ALSO GOES OUT TO OUR VOLUNTEERS WHO MADE THE 2016-2017 HARVEST MOON FESTIVALS A GREAT SUCCESS!

Archer Altstaetter

Soosan Amedi

Sherin Barvarz

Cheryl Burd

Coco Chandler

Kendra Chandler

Sydney Chandler

Riley Cutner

Jane DeLorenzo

Sandra Ferreras

Bryce Frost

Cody Harrison

Nicolas Jean

Adam Keene

Gwen Koger

Julie Lintz

Camellia Mazhar

Oliva Meis

Garrett Nichols

Bradley Nishida

Gina Nixon

Zack Orrantia

Collin Rodarte

Vicky Salgado

Laurel Skinner

Nora Stewart

Harvey Valles

Cachet Wenziger

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