OUR FARM

Coastal Roots Farm is a nonprofit community farm and education center where we nourish connections to ourselves, our neighbors, and the land. Inspired by Jewish wisdom and centuries-old agricultural traditions, we practice biodynamic farming and share our harvest with communities that lack access to healthy food. Our goal is to become a model for community farming and creative Jewish expression, both at home in Encinitas, California, and around the world.

Our farm consists of approximately 20 acres of mixed gardens, orchards, food forest, animal pastures, compost, vineyard, barns, greenhouses and farmhouses all in various stages of development. More than 50% of the food grown at our farm is donated for the benefit of community members who lack access to fresh food. Our food is distributed through our CSA, (community supported agriculture), pay-what-you-can farmstand, pop-up markets and direct donations to local hunger relief organizations.

As a center for education and community connection, we offer hands-on learning about Jewish agricultural heritage, farming, gardening and environmental stewardship for people of all ages and backgrounds. We also host gatherings and festivals where our community can get to know each other, eat healthy food, connect to the earth and celebrate together.

Vision

We envision a world in which every community comes together to grow and share healthy food, care for the land, help their neighbors, and strengthen the connections they have with each other.

Values

  1. We nourish everyone here
  2. Sustainability is a way of life for us
  3. A strong, connected community is critical to positive change
  4. We are committed to creative and innovative thinking
  5. Sharing ideas helps everyone grow
  6. We celebrate the diversity of our community
  7. Time is needed for rest and reflection

JEWISH COMMUNITY FARMING

Jewish community farms use farming, gardening, and food as a way to teach about Jewish tradition and heritage, build Jewish identity and community, and make the world a more just and sustainable place.

Here at Coastal Roots Farm, we are inspired by ancient Jewish traditions that connect people to community, food, the land, and social justice.

  • Ba’al Taschit: Ethical consumption
  • Shmita: Honoring natural cycles of the earth
  • Peah: Lining the corners of one’s field with food for the stranger and poor
  • Kayamut: Ecological sustainability
  • Ma’aser: Reserving at least one-tenth of one’s agricultural produce for the poor
  • K’vod Briut: The dignity of all creations
  • Hachnasat Orchim: Welcoming guests
  • Haganat Ovdim: Fair treatment of those who work the fields
  • Tsa’ar Ba’alei Chaim: Kind, humane treatment of animals
  • Tikkun Olam: Healing the world

These traditions and values are as meaningful and relevant today as they have been over thousands of years. Indeed, they are reflected in modern agricultural practices. They are also the basis of our deep commitment to the principles of food justice including access to fresh, healthy, affordable, and culturally-appropriate food for all; fair treatment of workers; responsible land stewardship and compassionate treatment of animals.

At Coastal Roots Farm, we are also proud to be part of a national movement of Jewish community farming. For more information on the impacts of Jewish farm experiences, read the Seeds of Opportunity summary report or full report.

Below are links to other Jewish community farms across North America:

Abundance Farm: abundancefarm.org
Adamah/Isabella Freedman Center: hazon.org/adamah
Eden Village Camp: edenvillagecamp.org
Ekar Farm: ekarfarm.org
Jewish Farm School: jewishfarmschool.org
Milk and Honey Farm: boulderjcc.org/farmandsustainability
Pearlstone: pearlstonecenter.org
Shoresh Farm: shoresh.ca
Urban Adamah: urbanadamah.org

HISTORY

We are located in Encinitas, California at Leichtag Commons, a 67.5 acre property which is a nexus of social enterprise, innovative agriculture, educational programs and vibrant community life. We manage approximately one third of the land at Leichtag Commons, participating actively in the North County Hub and working alongside commercial farmers renting space on the property. Our farm was established in 2014 and received recognition as an IRS approved 501 (c) (3) public charity in 2016.

E3 CLUSTER

We are located in a unique neighborhood at the center of what was once the “flower growing capital of the world.” Our property is contiguous to seven other nonprofit organizations, all offering multigenerational education and community building, which together form the Encinitas Environmental Education Cluster.

The members of the E3 Cluster are:
Encinitas Union School District Farm Lab
Magdalena Ecke YMCA
San Diego Botanic Garden
San Dieguito Heritage Museum
Seacrest Village Retirement Communities

Download our Masterplan PDF

BOARD & STAFF

Meet the Staff

Sona Desai

Sona Desai

Associate Director

Sona is the Farm’s Associate Director, and is responsible for overall management and strategic development of Coastal Roots Farm… read more

Katherine Favor

Katherine Favor

Community Farmer

Katherine Favor is Coastal Roots Farm’s Community Farmer, where she is responsible for supporting the maintenance of the Farm’s food forest and vineyard… read more

Nora Feldhusen

Nora Feldhusen

Educational Program Manager

Nora Feldhusen is the Farm’s Educational Program Manager where she is responsible for volunteer coordination, school and youth group coordination… read more

Ellie Honan

Ellie Honan

Compost and Animal Husbandry Coordinator

Ellie is the Farm’s Compost and Animal Husbandry Coordinator. In her position, she focuses on rotational grazing, milking, value-added products… read more

Annelise Jolley

Annelise Jolley

Communications Manager

Annelise is the Farm’s Communications Manager where she is responsible for developing, managing, and implementing the Farm’s communications and outreach strategies… read more

Jaclyn Kellner

Jaclyn Kellner

Community Educator

Jaclyn is the Farm’s Community Educator where she is responsible for Jewish and other educational programming… read more

Lora Keyte

Lora Keyte

Farm Distribution Coordinator

Lora Keyte is the Farm Distribution Coordinator where she is responsible for the operations of the on-site and mobile farm stand and supports our efforts to share fresh fruits and vegetables with the community… read more

Colin Leibold

Colin Leibold

Community Farmer

Colin Leibold is the Farm’s Community Farmer where he is responsible for working in the vegetable fields tending to the health of the soil and all of the crops… read more

Ricardo Lopez

Ricardo Lopez

Community Farmer

Ricardo Lopez is the Coastal Roots Farm’s Community Farmer where he works as a supporting member to all of the Farm team’s efforts… read more

Ross MacFarland

Ross MacFarland

Community Farmer

Ross MacFarland is the Farm’s Community Farmer where he is responsible for all duties farm related, from seed to table and everything in between… read more

LyOr Rabinowiz

LyOr Rabinowiz

Food Forest Coordinator

Lyor is the Farm’s Food Forest Coordinator where he is responsible for the design, implementation, maintenance, and programming on the 8.5 acre Food… read more

Bill Stallcup

Bill Stallcup

Community Farmer

Bill Stallcup is the Farm’s Community Farmer where he works as a supporting member to all of the farm team’s efforts… read more

Aaron Stewart

Aaron Stewart

Community Farmer

Aaron Stewart is the Farm’s Community Farmer where he works as a supporting member to all of the farm team’s efforts… read more

Sara Telzer

Sara Telzer

Social Enterprise Manager

Sara is the Farm’s Social Enterprise Manager where she is responsible for developing and supporting social enterprise initiatives at the farm, as well as… read more

Damian Valdez

Damian Valdez

Farm Education Coordinator

Damian Valdez is the Farm Education Coordinator where he works to mentor and advise all Coastal Roots Farm staff, interns, apprentices, and volunteers… read more

Nikki Velch

Nikki Velch

Community Farmer

Nikki Velch is a Community Farmer at Coastal Roots, where she is responsible for preparing and maintaining the fields, from planting to harvest… read more

In our early years of organizational development, the Leichtag Foundation is offering finance & administration, human resources and resource development support for the farm.

Laura Diede

Laura Diede

Office Assistant and Receptionist

Laura Diede is the Foundation’s Office Assistant and Receptionist where she is responsible for helping with office operations. read more

Sharyn Goodson

Sharyn Goodson

Director of Philanthropic Strategy

Sharyn Goodson is Leichtag’s Director of Philanthropic Strategy where she is responsible for leading funder partnerships, developing giving opportunities… read more

Vanessa Oshiro

Vanessa Oshiro

Grants and Operations Manager

Vanessa is the Foundation’s Grants and Operations Manager where she oversees grant administrative processes from concept to evaluation, analyzes strengths… read more

Leilani Rasmussen

Leilani Rasmussen

Director of Finance and Grants Administration

Leilani is the Foundation’s Director of Finance and Grants Administration where she oversees the Foundation’s financial management and analysis… read more

Meet the Board

Daron 'Farmer D' Joffe

Daron 'Farmer D' Joffe

President

Daron is the Executive Director of Coastal Roots Farm and the Leichtag Foundation’s Director of Agricultural Innovation and Development, where he… read more

Adam Berman

Adam Berman

Board Member

Adam Berman founded Urban Adamah in Berkeley in 2010 and currently serves as its Executive Director. From 2002 – 2009, Adam served as the Executive Director of the Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat… read more

Jim Farley

Jim Farley

Vice Chair

Jim is the President and CEO of Leichtag Foundation, a position he has held since 2007 when the Foundation became independent. Prior to that appointment… read more

Charlene Seidle

Charlene Seidle

Chair

Charlene is the Executive Vice President of the Leichtag Foundation, a private independent foundation which works to honor the legacy of Lee and Toni… read more

Job Opportunities

Thank you for your interest in working at Coastal Roots Farm. Below you will find current job openings and internships. For current volunteer opportunities, click here.

Farm Manager – View Job Description

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