Three-panel graphic showing farmers depicted by people of varying ethnicities who are not traditionally represented in agriculture.

Now Accepting Applications

The MDA's Emerging Farmers’ Working Group has openings for nine volunteer members for two-year terms. Minnesotans interested in making it easier for new and emerging farmers to create or sustain an agricultural business are encouraged to apply now through September 8, 2022.

Assistant Commissioner Patrice Bailey encourages Minnesotans to apply to the Emerging Farmers’ Working Group.

History and Purpose

The Emerging Farmers' Working Group was created in the 2020 Legislative Session.

The purpose of the working group is:

"To advise the commissioner and legislature regarding the development and implementation of programs and initiatives that support emerging farmers in this state, the commissioner must periodically convene a working group consisting, to the extent possible, of persons who are, and organizations that represent, farmers or aspiring farmers who are women, veterans, persons with disabilities, American Indian or Alaskan Natives, members of a community of color, young, and urban, and any other emerging farmers as determined by the commissioner. No later than January 15 each year, the commissioner must update the chairs and ranking minority members of the legislative committees and divisions with jurisdiction over agriculture regarding the working group's activities and recommendations.”


  • Shelly Woods,  Sibley County
  • Hannah Bernhardt, Pine County
  • Emily Reno, Otter Tail County
  • Erika Resendiz Alonso, Carlton County;
  • Hindolo Pokawa, Hennepin County
  • Janssen Hang , Dakota County
  • Kaitlyn Walsh, Carlton County
  • Michael Walgrave, Rock County
  • Naima Dhore, Ramsey County
  • Rebecca Dosch Brown, Hennepin County
  • Murigi Mutiga, Washington County
  • Bridget Guiza, Becker County
  • Mark Gutierrez, Ramsey County
  • Ben Dossman, Hennepin County
  • Kyle Huneke, Goodhue County
  • Albert Nyamari, Ramsey County


    Schedule (All virtual meetings through Microsoft Teams)

    • February 11, 2022

    • March 10, 2022 – USDA Local Foods Purchasing Agreement Program Meeting

    • March 22, 2022 – USDA Local Foods Purchasing Agreement Program Meeting

    • April 8, 2022

    • April 12, 2022 – USDA Local Foods Purchasing Agreement Program Meeting

    • August 10, 2022

    • October 14, 2022