We heard Alan Savory state this again tonight at the gala dinner. The conviction in his voice always chills me. He says it is the only way. Despite this intense focus and call to us for leadership in this important work (no pressure), it was a light evening and a delish lamb dinner. Spencer did NOT wear his tux, he opted, like most others to wear his suit jacket, tie and new blue jeans. As our Kenyan friend Tarquin said, “I’m a farmer; I didn’t get this dressed up for my own wedding!” We were separated for dinner–for networking purposes, I suppose. I was seated next to Nicholas from the Spain hub who really enjoyed the Merlot, while swearing that Spanish wine (of which he produces 800 gallons each year for friends, family and himself of course) is far superior to French or Californian wines. We met our beloved Brittany Cole Bush finally at dinner tonight. Such a happy reunion! We had only met on the phone before, but we felt like we’ve known her for years. Looking forward to her talk tomorrow.
The trips to and from places remain the best ways to get in a good conversation. On the ride to the gala, Spencer and I sat next to Sarah Fragoso from Everyday Paleo and her husband, where we talked about our children–of course–and then due to our Paleo dedications: butchering chickens and boiling beef tongue, both of which we found quite difficult. Elaine Ingham sat in front of us. I thought it was quite fitting to have the woman who is working to put nutrients and life into the soil on one side of us and the woman who works to lure out these nutrients via delicious food, sitting on the other side of us. Elaine is interested in visiting Springs Ranch and helping us with our soil monitoring–which to us is the equivalent of having a movie star send an invitation to a private party.
On the tube ride home we met our new housemate, Taylor, a young entrepreneur from Austin, Texas who developed a new product with now three manufacturing plants (and finally can slow down after meeting the demand out there for his product) in two states in just a year and a half. The product is none other than….Epic bars! My favorite! He is working with the Savory Institute to source his meat from holistically managed land. So exciting. Their box label will soon feature Savory Institute branding. Look for it at a Whole Foods or health food store near you.
The work session today provided sneak peeks of SI’s new technology platform including their data management system (and for the first time I got to see my husband geek out over technology, which was fun), hub platform as well as new branding strategy, communications, marketing and the new online curriculum. Really fun stuff. I want to share SI’s brand positioning statement with you because I think it is so beautiful:
“For the land and all who depend on it, the Savory Institute facilitates the realization of a life of enduring returns.” Isn’t that a wonderful way to do work?
Savory said this morning that leadership cannot be built, it simply arises or it doesn’t. I see this in our friends from Ethiopia, Sarah and her husband, and the courage they have to pursue their work. Here they are, please meet two wonderful people doing really important work: http://youtu.be/ly5H9ZAaTII