Brothers in Farms

by | Apr 27, 2020 | Farmer Musings

Tiffany making deliveries for the NPP


As we were gathering our things after just pitching an urban farm concept to an organization late last year, one of the people we pitched to asked us, “So who does your marketing? The presentation was really well done.”

Dan raised his hand. They made a joke about hiring him onto their team.

As we were walking back to our car, we joked how Dan could work in four to six different careers making close to if not above six figures and yet he was in none of them.

No one sacrifices more to be a part of the work we do on the farm than Dan and no one receives less recognition or credit for what we do as an organization than Dan.

At a lot of the meetings we’re both at I often take over the conversation to the point that most people assume Dan is a farmer as well and we just come from a farming family. It gives us both a chuckle.

Holding a Masters in Mechanical Engineering, Dan could have continued his career in Medical Device startups in Silicon Valley, but instead chose to return to Houston. He eventually left the oil and gas manufacturing realm after giving it what I would call “a fair try” to join me in starting Finca.

He is what separates our farming organization from almost any other that I know.

He’s our marketing guru, graphic designer, lead entrepreneur, business plan writer, pitch competition director, systems developer, IT guy, web designer and programmer, project manager, technical writer, lean/six sigma expert, and lead engineer.

He picks up new skills frighteningly fast which lends to the fact that a few of his other possible career paths are things he’s taught himself by filling in our needs as an organization that we didn’t have the resources to outsource.

He’s made our organization better in almost every facet and is my barometer for whether or not we’re holding up to our internally defined measures of success.

It’s a blessing to have a “non-farmer” who understands the integral value of the work we do but still is able to provide his “outsider” perspective into our work as a farming organization that does much more than just grow veggies.

Dan and I often have very heated discussions about certain decisions that have to be made and it’s these disagreements and openness to challenge each other that is one of our strengths as an organization.

It’s been humbling to watch him grow into a leader in the social entrepreneurship world of Houston and I’m often stealing his quotes that could only come from a non-farmer fully committed to and invested in the work of a farming organization.

His choice to be a part of our farm every day represents and affirms his belief that there is a deep and unaccounted for value in the work of agriculture and that we as individuals can make choices to redefine, advocate for, and create that value. Just like he has done himself every day for the last six years.

Dan believes that not only can you build successful businesses that make money improving our world but that “that should be the expectation not the exception”.

I couldn’t agree more.

To share the last seven years of this journey with my brother has been a special blessing for me that I’m particularly grateful for and is a gift to all those who are connected to our work.