Staff & Partners President & Principal Facilitator
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Joseph is President and Principal Facilitator of our organization. Since joining the organization in 2001, he has leveraged his decades of organizational development, facilitation, and social change skills to grow Ag Innovations into a nationally-recognized organization that works to cultivate the ideas and actions needed for healthy farms, communities, and ecosystems. In April of 2018, he is handing the reins of Ag Innovations over to the next generation and moving into a newly created senior fellow role.
Joseph has worked with food businesses, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, farmers and community members to build robust solutions to some of our food system’s most pressing challenges. He developed our signature Food System Alliance and Roundtable processes as led hundreds of meetings and change efforts that bring divergent interests together to see problems in a common light and find innovative solutions.
Originally trained as an economist, Joseph has taught Environmental Economics at New College of California and History of Economic Thought at University of Rhode Island. This training lent itself well to Joseph’s early business career focused on marketing, management, and conference development which he continues to apply today. In addition, he is an experienced nonprofit organization manager, having spent seven years as executive director of Resources for Creativity, an organization that trained group facilitators. He also holds a MA in Psychology with an Organization Development focus from Sonoma State University; he uses this knowledge extensively in his facilitation and social change work.
Joseph came early to sustainability through his interest in systems thinking and steady-state economics cultivated as an interdisciplinary studies student at the University of the Pacific, in Stockton, California (BA in Liberal Arts with Honors). Living in Stockton placed him in the heart of California Delta agriculture and left an indelible impression of the bounties and the risks of the current food system.
Joseph is co-founder of the Academy of Systems Change, a 10-year initiative to enable leaders, communities and networks in critical systems to catalyze and facilitate societal, environmental and economic well-being on a scale that matters. The Academy convenes leaders to help lay a foundation of shared learnings to accelerate the growth of healthy social, economic and human systems.
Joseph is in demand as a public speaker and conference facilitator with his ability to move even large groups towards solution-based, collaborative thinking.