Who We Are
Rod Bowling (he / him)
Director of Administration
In addition to his work at OGS, Rodney Bowling is the co-owner of Mudluscious Pottery & Gardens in Mars Hill, NC. In addition to his homestead and farm, he has committed himself to non-profit finance and management, and previously served as the executive director of the Madison County Arts Council. Rod is a former board member and joined the OGS staff in 2015.
Nicole DelCogliano (she / her)
Director of Programs & Human Resources
Nicole teaches the year long Farm Beginnings program to new and beginning farmers. She and her husband have been farming at Green Toe Ground Farm in Yancey County since 2001.
Julie Douglas (she / they)
Marketing & Communications Associate
Julie is a medicinal herb grower, ethical wild crafter, photographer, writer, educator and medicine maker. They’ve worked on small scale, organic farms and community gardens throughout the US since 2013. Their focus is largely on empowering communities through social justice efforts within health care and food systems. Creating and bolstering mutual aid networks, making alternative healthcare accessible to marginalized people, and decolonizing herbal medicine is the primary focus of their work.
Cameron Farlow (she / her)
Hailing from Greensboro, NC with dairy farming in her blood, she has made her home in WNC, and has been with OGS since 2012. With a Master’s Degree in Appalachian Studies & Sustainable Development, Cameron also brings experience in the realms of farmland conservation, food security, farm to university, and land access for farmers. Outside of OGS, Cameron is a mother, dancer, baker, gardener, and avid explorer.
René Foster (she / her)
Director of Marketing & Communications
Her first loves were photography and writing, which took her to SCAD of Atlanta, initially, and finally to Georgia State University. There, she expanded her applicability by studying print journalism while minoring in cultural anthropology, predominantly researching things like food deserts, gender, and environmental inequalities. After college, René started in the professional world as a content writer, later expanding into marketing and graphic design. She has volunteered extensively with wildlife, animal rescue, and environmental nonprofits. At home, René is an avid home-grower/the micro farmer behind Five Dog Farms and working toward further expanding into permaculture. So far, she has four dogs, two cats, and too many chickens. She loves to learn continually and has become immersed in sustainability and bettering her impact on the environment.
Brandon Greenstein (any / all)
Director of Sustainability Coaching
Brandon Greenstein works with clients in the field to help forward their land based goals. His background is in Renewable Systems, Earth Works, Energy, Water, and Permaculture, specifically providing consulting, design and technical services for the creation of integrated systems. He has been living a land based lifestyle, including off-grid living and food production, in the western NC mountains for over 20 years.
Avi Li (she / they)
Avi earned a Bachelor’s of Arts and Science in Sustainability from McGill University, and has been exploring the overlapping worlds of activism, justice, and resilience since then. They spent the past two and a half years working at the Environmental Law Institute in DC conducting research on issues ranging from conflict sensitivity in environmental programming to incentivizing nature-based disaster mitigation, and serving in a coordination and facilitation for various educational programs. Outside of work, she has pursued local climate, racial and economic justice organizing and activism, and seeks to understand how farming and home growing can be employed as wedges in those struggles. Avi is enamored with fungi and enchanted by their powers to heal our bodies, our communities, and the land and water on which we depend.
Stephanie Vinat (she / her)
Stephanie is a former sales director turned farmer. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Central Florida in 2004. She began her career in education and later transitioned to the financial sector. She is an avid traveler and spent two years traveling internationally with her husband. During her travels, she earned her Permaculture Design Certificate from Punta Mona Center for Regenerative Design & Botanical Studies and her 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Certificate from Himalaya Yoga Valley. She and her husband purchased an old tobacco farm in Madison County, NC where they operate The AppaLatin Farmstead – a small-scale farm practicing holistic agriculture and food justice. She focuses on growing culturally significant crops and celebrating her Cuban-Puerto Rican roots through her value-added food products. She is a Farm Beginnings graduate and local food advocate.
Macon York Costlow
Board members not pictured: Zo Mpofu
Our Growth Partners
Thank you to our dedicated Growth Partners—long-term supporters of Organic Growers School. These organizations have partnered with OGS to help build the local, sustainable food movement in Western North Carolina.
OGS Board & Executive Director – October, 2019
(missing from photo: Alison Czeczuga, Jeanine Davis, Ta’rin’ii Shanai)
Some Members of Organic Growers School Board & Staff – August, 2019