Meet the 2011 Apprentices

Dominique Sturdivant

Dominique was born and raised in Lansing, Michigan.  She graduated from Sexton High School in 2005, is a certified medical assistant, and mother of three young boys.  She thinks that it is highly beneficial to understand all the aspects of food, especially when it comes to healthier eating.  Her dream is to operate a farm with her brother, who is a chef, and open a buffet-style, family restaurant serving farm-fresh foods and take-home meals.  She enjoys meeting people in the community with similar interests who also strive to enrich their neighborhoods.  In the meantime, she plans to take what she learns and spread the word about urban farming.

Neal Valley

Neal grew up in the town of Cadillac in Northern Michigan.  As someone who has lived all over the state, he’s seen the difference access to fresh foods can make on a community. He’s been in Lansing for three years, and as his interest in where his food comes from has grown, he’s seen an increase in the production and awareness of Mid-Michigan’s farmland as well. His background isn’t in farming, so he considers the apprenticeship a great opportunity to learn all about small scale production and to be involved in something that is both good for the city and population of Lansing. He’s excited to be a part of our small team, and next year hopes to either attend the Student Organic Farm, start his own urban farming operation, or work with a non-profit who supplies food to the surrounding community.

Ben Linsemier

Ben has been active in the community garden scene within Lansing for several years and hopes to use the experience he gains from the apprenticeship program to start his own urban farm.