Mary Fund, a longtime Kansas Rural Center Staff member who has been serving as Interim Executive Director of the center since January, has been appointed to the Executive Director position.
"We are pleased that Mary has accepted the position, and feel that her history with the organization, and her background in sustainable agriculture circles, make her uniquely suited for the job," said Stu Shafer, KRC board president. "We look forward to working with her and the other staff to build on KRC's accomplishments and rich history."
While serving as Interim Director, Fund has also been KRC's Policy and Program Director and editor of KRC's newsletter, Rural Papers, and the Weekly Legislative Policy Updates.
Fund said that KRC has a long history of promoting an environmentally sound, economically viable food and farming system.
More recently, the center has expanded its vision to include greater local and regional food production, promotion of beginning farmer opportunities, and healthy and accessible food for all Kansas citizens.
"We are committed as an organization to increasing economic opportunities in farming and food related businesses, and to promotion of a diversified, ecologically based agriculture as the means to feeding ourselves as well as feeding the world," Fund said.
In her years at KRC, Fund has worked primarily on conservation, natural resource and agricultural policy issues, as well as serving as the coordinator of KRC's Clean Water Farm Project from 1996-2012. She has monitored state and federal farm and resource policy and worked on numerous advocacy projects such as the 1980's farm crisis organizing project, anti-corporate farming campaign, and on various state water policy issues, serving on a number of water advisory boards. From 2003-2008, she served on the Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (now the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition) Coordinating Council and as Co-Chair 2005-2008.
In 2005, she was awarded the John Vogelsberg Sustainable Agriculture Award by the Kansas Organic Producers, and is a current board member of the national Organic Farming Research Foundation.
Mary and her husband, Edward Reznicek, live in southern Nemaha County near Goff and own a 400-acre, certified organic farm.