Steering Committee

Portia Bramble
North Coast Growers’ Association
Portia Bramble has been the Executive Director for the North Coast Growers’ Association since 2008. Portia earned a Masters Degree in Social Sciences from Humboldt State University in 2009 with a project exploring the implications of California’s Direct Marketing agricultural regulations on farmers’ market management and operations. Portia grew up in Berkeley, CA, and received her Bachelors Degree in Political Studies and Environmental Policy from Pitzer College in 2006.
Ben Palazzolo
Pacific Coast Farmers’ Market Association
Ben Palazzolo oversees operations for all Certified Farmers’ Markets run by Pacific Coast Farmers’ Market Association in Santa Clara County. He has worked with PCFMA since 2011, previously as a farmers’ market manager operating farmers’ markets throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, and as a regional manager overseeing all PCFMA markets in Santa Clara County. Working with a variety of farmers, city officials, organizations, and regulating bodies, Ben strives to create and maintain spaces in a variety of communities where California farmers can sell produce they grow to the public.
Tanya Wolf Small
Agricultural Institute of Marin
Tanya grew up in the small town of St. Helena, and got her start in agriculture at an early age picking grapes and helping her family make wine. She has a BA in International Studies from the University of Arkansas Little Rock, which she attended on a volleyball scholarship. Tanya has worked in the wine industry, management, and sales before joining AIM in 2004. Tanya has 13 years of market management experience, having managed all 7 of AIM’s farmers markets at different times in her career. She is AIM’s Chief Operations Officer, overseeing the operations and management of AIM’s 7 markets, and also acts as AIM’s CFO. She enjoys knowing and talking with the people who grow and raise her food, interacting with the community at farmers markets and helping farmers and vendors grow their businesses. She spends her free time dancing, playing volleyball, cooking and eating, and is known to break into dance routines spontaneously.
Elizabeth Bowman
Sustainable Economic Enterprises of LA
Elizabeth Bowman is co-manager of the Hollywood Farmers’ Market – a 25-year old certified farmers’ market with nearly 200 vendors. In 2012, Elizabeth worked with Altadena Farmers’ Market founder to develop the [Sub]Urban Farming Project for the market. In this capacity, she helped local, backyard farmers and gardeners start their farmers’ market business. This work culminated in the development of a regulatory guide for first time urban farmers selling at Certified Farmers Markets in Los Angeles. Elizabeth now owns and operates the Altadena Farmers’ Market. Elizabeth has an MA in Urban Sustainability from Antioch University, Los Angeles, and a BFA in Theatre Arts from New York University.
Erin Tormey
Coastside Farmers’ Markets/Irish Ridge Ranch
In 1997, Erin started Irish Ridge Ranch, a 48 acre ranch south of Half Moon Bay, with 200 threatened or recovering breed hens, and a nascent orchard of rare, pioneer and heritage apples. Erin is also the founder of Coastside Farmers’ Markets, bringing the first Certified Farmers’ Market to Half Moon Bay in 2002, and to Pacifica in 2007. The Half Moon Bay market has been recognized in Gourmet Magazine, Sunset Magazine, the Roots of Change website, the Bay Area A-List. Erin is an inaugural member of the San Mateo Food Systems Alliance, a founding director of The HEAL Project, she managed the Market-Place section of the Slow Food Nation event in San Francisco, and has served on the Technical Review Committee of the CDFA Specialty Crop Block Grant program since 2010.
Catt Fields White
San Diego Markets
Catt Fields White is the Director of San Diego Markets, developing thriving farmers’ markets in urban neighborhoods, and consulting with emerging markets throughout San Diego County. She encourages entrepreneurship and value added opportunities for farmers through monthly Vendor 101 classes and writes about food, farms, restaurants and marketing. Serving on multiple Boards of Directors including the California Restaurant Association, the Little Italy Association, Just Call Us Volunteers and now the CA Small Farm Conference she is actively involved with Slow Food Urban San Diego, Les Dames Escoffier, and other professional associations and charitable foundations. Find her at www.sdweeklymarkets.com
LaTisha Sohai
So Cal Farmers’ Markets
LaTisha is the Healthy Foods Program Coordinator at Alchemist Community Development Corporation, based in Sacramento. LaTisha conducts educational tours related to nutrition and food access at neighborhood grocery stores. She also provides CalFresh booth staffing and outreach support for CalFresh and Market Match, as well as manages the Valley-Mack Farmers’ Market. LaTisha is a Sacramento native and holds certifications in Health & Wellness Education, Food Service Management, Culinary Arts and Medical Assisting. After moving to Denver for college she returned home in 2015 and has worked extensively with various nonprofits in the area.
Julie Schwarz
So Cal Farmers’ Markets
Julie Schwarz, an East Coast native, has lived in Southern California for the last twelve years where she has helped open and establish 7 farmers’ markets, and currently manages the Paramount Farmers’ Market. She began working at farmers’ markets while living in San Diego. Julie was so sure she wanted to be a part of the farmers’ market movement that she applied to SD Weekly Markets, without having any previous market experience, and was hired by Catt White. Julie’s success in the farmers’ market industry is attributed to her 30 years of experience in retail, hospitality, hotel and food and beverage; including being a chef, server, bartender, and manager in the restaurant and catering businesses. Julie’s passions include: growing small businesses for people who want to step into the farmers’ market industry; interacting with the community that is created at farmers’ markets; and being a self proclaimed “farmers’ market junkie” in that she will seek out as many as she can find while traveling anywhere in the country. 
Paul Stonebarger
Ghiggari & Stonebarger Farms
Paul Stonebarger is a 3rd generation farmer at family owned, G&S Farms in Brentwood, California. G&S is known across the country for its famous “Brentwood Sweet Corn” which Paul’s grandfather was the first to plant in Brentwood. Generations later, G&S is still growing Sweet Corn, but has also expanded into cherries, green beans, tomatoes and pumpkins. Much of the produce grown is sold to grocery chains or packaged and distributed across the country and world. The rest of the corn is sold at farmers markets in Northern California. Paul studied Business Ag at Chico State University before coming home to work on his family’s farm. During the summer months you will often find Paul and his family walking around various farmers markets, getting to know managers and planning for the next season. When he’s not farming you’ll find Paul at home with his wife and son or on the basketball court, blowing off steam!