Brandon’s existential anxiety about making sure grain and bean crops were part of the burgeoning local food movement led him to grow test plots of high nutrition staple seed crops in 2008, which in just a few years, led to the start of the mill. He crunches numbers and solves problems as the arise. He's into a lot of other things-- Organic farmsteading, backpacking, Soto Zen, T'ai Chi, Yoga, racquetball, volleyball and Ultimate Frisbee.
Michelle came to Amesville, Ohio, to teach at a small parent run school. She helped start and lived in two intentional communities and farmed for local markets. After the school closed, her work shifted to environmental activism and poverty law, and communications work with Rural Action until 2003. At Shagbark, Michelle maintains connections among supporters and media outlets, and coordinates many of our community projects. She recently rejoined Rural Action with the Appalachian Staple Foods Collaborative, a project she and Brandon founded in 2009, which led to launching Shagbark. She's received several awards for connecting local food to justice, the environment, and innovation.
The Facility Team
Joe Beres -- Production Manager
Joe is in charge of seed cleaning and crop receiving and makes sure the production floor is running well. His humor is uplifting and irreverent, and there’s considerably more laughter at work since he joined the team. He’s been working in organic farming and food production for more than 20 years and has grown vegetables for the market at his family farm in Meigs County, where he lives with his partner, Cat and their two children, Amani and Ben, along with their donkey and goat, Pedro and Damu. He’s also worked as the Assistant Manager for the Athens Farmers Market, and as a member of the production team at Snowville Creamery. He’s a long time friend of Michelle and Brandon.
Dillon Green-Accounts Receivable, Orders, & Demo Coordination
A man of many hats around the mill, Dillon keeps our social media up to date, answers inquiries, coordinates Shagbark distribution around the region, and more! He's even apt to show up at our booth at the Paw Paw Festival or enjoying the main stage at the Nelsonville Music Festival. An OU alum who spent several years in Tennessee, he and his wife were elated to return to their roots in Athens in 2018. Dillon enjoys playing music, collecting retro video-games, and making his co-workers smile at his puns.
Marty Zinn, HR, Payroll & Accounts Payable
Marty is a founding member of the cooperative intentional community where she has lived for over 30 years outside Amesville, Ohio, in Athens County. She has spent much of her life participating in nonviolent direct action for social and economic justice, consulting in cooperative communications in the US and Europe. She is now "retired" from a career of community organizing, having worked with many of the local Athens advocacy, environmental, and community development nonprofit organizations. Marty helps with hiring, seeing that everyone gets paid on time, and accounts payable. She asks the best questions at our monthly staff meetings about profits, balance sheets, and all things financial. She likes taking walks, canoeing, knitting, and doing jigsaw puzzles.
Janice Brewer, all things Shagbark!
Jaymee Weaver, Traveler and Shagbark Enthusiast!
When Jaymee comes home from Ecuador to visit her family in New Marshfield a few times a year, she brings her contagious joy and energy to our Athens Farmers Market booth on Saturday mornings. She received a Fulbright Scholarship to work with indigenous communities in Ecuador, where she created and performed plays with indigenous women about their experiences with oil and gas extraction. She has strong ties to her family and community here and has taught us about the historical and economic connections she sees between Appalachia and the indigenous people of Ecuador. Now living in the Western US, she works with midwives in her community.
Deliveries & Stocking
Tiffany D., Athens Deliveries & Kroger Stocking
Tiffany is a client of Echoing Connections who became a Shagbark employee to deliver our products to our Athens grocery, restaurant, and school customers. You might see her at the Athens Kroger on Mondays and Thursdays when she’s stocking our shelves as part of that delivery. She is also in charge of weekly clean up at the Mill. She loves horseback riding and is on the swim team at the Special Olympics.
Sharon McCune, Athens Kroger Stock
Sharon, an Athens County native, loves to hunt. She’s proficient with a compound bow, crossbow, rifle, and muzzleloader. She is both a mother and grandmother and enjoys spending time with her family. She makes sure that our products are stocked at the Athens Kroger store all weekend and keeps tabs on what we need to send the store on our weekly deliveries. She also works at Echoing Connections, the day program for people with disabilities, which operates in the front of the same building that houses Shagbark’s facility in Athens, Ohio.
Many great people around the region put their passion for local food into sampling our products and telling the Shagbark story in a store near you. When you see one of them, be sure to hello and be served a delicious sample! Then, take a selfie with them to post on your and our social media pages!