Farmers Market in Texas

Director of Operations

Organization: F2M Texas
Posted by TFM Operations – Aug 09, 2018
Posted in Nonprofit Job
Address: PO BOX 14984, Austin, TX, 78761
Start Date: Sep 01, 2018
Application Due Date: Sep 01, 2018

Position Details:Position Title: Director of Operations

Classification: Full-time, salaried

Reports to: Executive Director

Position Summary:

The Director of Operations oversees and completes a wide variety of operational, administrative, and managerial functions for Texas Farmers’ Markets, conducting three markets in Austin, Texas. The Director of Operations refines systems to enhance the efficiency of the market, maintains vendor relations, performs administrative tasks, directly supervises the Operations Team, volunteers, and other contracted laborers, and implements Food Access programs. There may be need for hours beyond the regular workday, or outside the target scope of 40 hours per week.

Major Responsibilities:

Operations and Administration                                   

  • Acts as point of contact for vendor, customer service, and all other immediate issues at each market. Maximizes procedures for set-up through break-down of market to ensure ease of operation. Creates a safe, clean, enjoyable market experience for all vendors and shoppers. Updates emergency call lists and safety precautions
  • Conducts vendor relations. Creates market layouts (placement of vendors, events, etc.) to maximize market experience and vendor success. Communicates with and is accessible to vendors throughout the week, and sends recurrent correspondence to vendors with important notifications. Provides at market counseling on logistical and customer service issues. Responds to attendance/payment/general rule violations by vendors. Retrains and updates vendors at annual meetings. Assists vendors in health code permitting and compliance
  • Develops and maintains an Operations budget. Improves spending by reviewing sourcing and tracking expenditures. Responsible for Operations purchasing and budget attribution. In charge of storage and completes regular inventory of all market supplies in trailers and offsite units. Monitors and repairs equipment including scheduled maintenance
  • Reconciles financial records and deposits weekly revenue from markets. Generates and distributes vendor invoices, including annual membership fees, contracts and agreements. Promotes market merchandise sales
  • Maintains Austin Public Health permitting for Sample the Market booth, including renewal annually
  • Obtains accurate and current required certificates and licenses of vendors, e.g. organic certification, health permits, food handlers, liability insurance, etc.
  • Supports the Director of Marketing and Agriculture by managing logistics for special events. Directs special events such as visiting nonprofits, chefs and community groups on the ground. Creates original educational curriculum for Market Sprouts programming
  • Makes record of observations from markets. Improves systems that track metrics, provides data for evaluation and reports including customer and vendor satisfaction and crowd counts. Inputs data to support grant funding
  • Attends and leads regular meetings. Contributes to weekly conference calls and annual board and planning meetings
  • Provides Human Resources functions for the organization. Maintains awareness of applicable laws and revises and renews insurance policies on a yearly basis
  • Collaborates with Director of Marketing and Agriculture on creating signage and attractions to draw shoppers (including content that warrants social media distribution)
  • Aids in vendor recruitment and attends farm and ranch verification visits as needed
  • Assists with and provides staffing for the Austin Fermentation Festival
  • Perpetuates positive relationships with site partners and abides by city codes according to location
  • Represents Texas Farmers’ Markets and delivers original presentations at conferences and other related functions
  • Strives for growth through professional development and networking

Staffing and Management

  • Directly supervises the Operations Team (day-of market contractors) and other contracted laborers. Oversees paid staff including Market Coordinators, Crew, and Information Booth Assistants (Sampler, Community Composter, and Food Access Associate). Develops and implements an effective staffing structure that contributes to employee satisfaction and retention. Employs staff for additional labor as needed
  • Recruits and hires a diverse Operations Team. Conducts thorough interviews and checks references. Onboards new hires and collects appropriate tax information and paperwork. Orients new staff, arranges thorough training, and provides supplementary training materials where applicable. Creates a monthly schedule, accommodates time-off requests and responds to the ebb and flow of market staffing needs. Approves timesheets and distributes checks
  • Manages the Operations and Marketing Assistant. Collaborates with Director of Marketing and Agriculture to designate their regular responsibilities and provide feedback. Identifies opportunities for Operations and Marketing Assistant to relieve other members of the TFM team of miscellaneous administrative duties. Helps pilot the new role, analyzes the position, and makes adjustments as needed
  • Provides direct and immediate feedback to both vendors and staff. Thoughtfully approaches vendor and staffing related issues, tracks conversations to identify patterns and take further action when needed. Retrains, holds review sessions, and meetings as necessary to keep all individuals well informed and high performing
  • Recruits and engages volunteers. Schedules, greets, and conducts onsite training. Supports participants and works towards long-term and repeat volunteers
  • Tracks staff Food Handler’s certifications and prompts renewals when necessary. Secures Food Manager’s License for markets personally, and reregisters with city according to expiration dates

Food Access

  • Responsible for implementation of the SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), Double Dollars, and FMNP (Famers’ Market Nutrition Program) at all markets with the assistance of the Sustainable Food Center. Directly supervises Food Access Associates, oversees the Food Access tent, collects and inputs data to support program funding, and streamlines corresponding processes
  • Hires Food Access Associate for the market. Finds qualified candidates with support of the Sustainable Food Center and confirms prospective candidate’s proficiency in Spanish. Administers onsite training, delivers feedback, and creates schedules for the FAA. Updates FAA with changes to programs, tools to enhance the user experience and yield results towards program goals
  • Acts as ambassador for Texas Farmers’ Market’s participation in Food Access programs when liaising with SFC on related matters. Documents and reports as requested by each sponsor or grant. Attends meetings at the Sustainable Food Center as required, and facilitates extracurricular projects such as annual surveying
  • Monitors program equipment, including electronics and scrip (vouchers). Accountable for cellular and data plans associated with Food Access

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:  

  • Excellent verbal, written, interpersonal and communication skills
  • Attentive to details and displays a strong aptitude for organization
  • Strong customer service skills- displays enthusiastic, outgoing, and helpful behavior
  • Team oriented as well as self-motivated
  • Good analytical skills- able to creatively problem-solve
  • Ability to initiate tasks and coordinate projects through completion with minimal management
  • Aptitude for prioritizing tasks and showcasing flexibility in the event of a change
  • Model ethical and professional integrity
  • Comfortable working with numbers, bookkeeping and POS technologies
  • Strong skills in MS Office and web-based applications
  • Willingness to learn and expand job skills
  • Flexible time schedule to accommodate variable hours and market activities a must
  • Competency in Spanish desired but not mandatory


  • Bachelor’s Degree or higher preferred
  • 3+ years work experience in relevant work, preferably Farmers’ Markets or nonprofits
  • Minimum five years experience in people management

Physical Requirements:

  • Must be able to work in field and at the markets that operate rain or shine
  • Should be able to lift ~50 lbs. and stand, walk, or sit for prolonged periods of time
To Apply: Send cover letter and resume to with subject: Director of Operations Application- YOUR NAME

Yard to Market Table

On Saturday, August the 18th, in collaboration with Yard To Market, The Texas Center for Local Food is happy to bring you “Business Planning for Micro Farm Success” workshop. The workshop is being held at the Cook’s Nook from 2-4pm.

This workshop will cover all the basics for taking your homegrown bounty to market running a smart, successful micro farm whether you have .2 acres or twenty. Learn from experts in business and financial planning as well as legal aspects of starting a small business. We’ll also provide resources for necessities like farmer training, insurance and food safety. Join us for this fun and interactive class!

Tickets can be found here. Hope to see you there!


The Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance Announces 
the Larry Butler Memorial Scholarship Fund for Beginning Farmers

Now Accepting Donations in Larry’s Honor


Larry Butler, farmer and a long-time leader in the local food community of Texas, died of liver cancer at the age of 70 on June 28, 2018, at Boggy Creek Farm, the East Austin vegetable farm that he and his wife and co-farmer, Carol Ann Sayle, began bringing into being in 1992. They eventually turned it, and its historic 1841 house, into the gem of an urban farm that flourishes today and is beloved, along with Larry and Carol Ann, in and beyond Austin. In addition to growing vegetables at Boggy Creek, Larry also cultivated vegetables on their farm in Gause, commuting between the two farms and bringing produce from Gause to Austin for market days.

“Larry understood the necessity of nourishing the soil, so that he could succeed in the most noble cause, growing healthy, tasty food for anyone who made it a priority to eat well.
”Like most farmers, he was generous, helping out neighbors, sharing his knowledge of crops, the seasons, tractors, and hand-made implements, especially to young farmers.” Carol Ann Sayle

For about the first ten years of farming, Larry and Carol Ann sold most of their produce at Austin’s Westlake Farmers’ Market and developed a large clientele, becoming public figures of a sort, both because of the quality of their vegetables and because of Larry’s gift of gab.  Larry relished chewing the fat, and this made him stand out from more reticent farmers. So did his signature cowboy hats and crisp, clean khaki shirts and pants. “Tell ya what,” Larry would say, leaning toward you at the beginning of a conversation, and you never knew exactly what you were going to hear, though you could be sure that at least some of it would be funny and make you laugh.

Around 2002, Larry and Carol Ann shifted from the farmers’ market to selling at their Boggy Creek farm stand at weekly market days. This shift added to their celebrity in local food circles and also put Boggy Creek Farm on the map as a destination not only for produce but also for special events such as farming workshops and fundraisers for the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance (FARFA) and the Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (TOFGA), which Larry and Carol Ann helped found.

And so Boggy Creek became a magnet for growing numbers of aspiring farmers, some just to visit and ask questions of Larry and Carol Ann, while other aspirants came seeking employment as apprentices or regular staff.

Brad Stufflebeam, Brenham farmer and former president of TOFGA, says that his family’s visits to Boggy Creek when they were considering farming made him believe that small farming could be a reality. “We became friends with Larry and Carol Ann and greatly valued their honesty, wisdom, humor, and inspiration for all the years to come,” Brad says. “Larry’s innovations and willingness to share helped our family and many other families throughout Texas get into farming. Larry taught me some lessons you wouldn’t expect, like how to build a potato planter out of a toilet flange and how to eradicate squash bugs with a propane flame thrower.”

Lorig Hawkins, an Austin-area farmer, got a job at Boggy Creek after a TOFGA workshop there fueled her desire to farm. One of the things that most impressed her about Larry was his steady cheer and productivity. “He was one of the first people I met that somehow balanced just getting shit done and having a smile while doing it. I rarely saw him stressed or frustrated. Sure he complained about how markets were going, about the failing of people to know how to cook, their failing to understand their food and to support local growers,” she recalls. “But I never saw him upset over something that broke, or the fact that we still needed to get the tomatoes in. He knew that just the act of doing what you could on any given day was all you needed. He was always doing things but never rushed.”

All of us at FARFA and in the local food community throughout Texas and beyond mourn Larry’s death, and yet we take heart that he lives on through the work of those he inspired and taught.

To honor Larry and Carol Ann’s tradition of generosity in teaching aspiring farmers, FARFA announces the Larry Butler Memorial Scholarship Fund for Beginning Farmers. Its sole purpose is to provide financial assistance for novice farmers to attend FARFA, TOFGA, and other educational conferences.

The fund will be managed by our sister (c)(3) educational organization, the Council for Healthy Food Systems, at  Donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Texas State University’s Department of Agriculture will host the

2nd Annual

Small Producers Conference

August 13 – 15, 2018

Conference Registration is open, register here.

Small Equipment Demonstration to be held on August 15th

The conference will be held in the Department of Agriculture’s building on Texas State University’s campus from August 13th-14th and followed by a small equipment demonstration on August 15th. Registration is $75 before August 1 and $90 afterward and limited to 150 attendees.

All this is possible thanks to generous grants from the USDA programs of Office of Advocacy and Outreach and Non-Land Grant Colleges of Agriculture, and from Capital Farm Credit.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) encourages America’s farmers and ranchers to nominate candidates to lead, serve and represent their community on their local county committee. USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) will accept nominations for county committee members beginning Friday, June 15, 2018.

Producers across the country are already serving on committees where they play a critical role in the day-to-day operations of FSA, making important decisions on programs dealing with disaster and conservation, emergencies, commodity price loan support, county office employment and other agricultural issues.

“Our county committees make decisions about how federal farm programs are administered locally to best serve the needs of agriculture in their community,” said Acting FSA Administrator Steve Peterson. “We strongly encourage all eligible producers to visit their local FSA office today to find out how to get involved in their county’s election. There’s an increasing need for representation from underserved producers, which includes beginning, women and other minority farmers and ranchers.”

Nationwide, more than 7,700 dedicated farmers and ranchers serve on FSA county committees, which consist of three to 11 members and meet once a month, or as needed. Members serve three-year terms.

Producers can nominate themselves or others. Check your local USDA service center to see if your local administrative area is up for election this year.  Organizations, including those representing beginning, women and minority producers, may also nominate candidates to better serve their communities. To be eligible to serve on an FSA county committee, producers must participate or cooperate in an FSA program and reside in the area where the election is being held.

To be considered, a producer must sign an FSA-669A nomination form. The form and other information about FSA county committee elections are available at All nomination forms for the 2018 election must be postmarked or received in the local FSA office by Aug. 1, 2018. Visit for more information.

Election ballots will be mailed to eligible voters beginning Nov. 5, 2018. Read more to learn about important election dates.

Full press release can be found here.


It’s always such a pleasure to run into farmer friends (and former Texans). Sue and Farmer Katie Tritsch were able to catch up recently and talk strategy for the Texas Center for Local Food. Big things to come, so make sure to stay tuned!

Farmer Katie currently works at Singing Frog Farms in Sebastopol, Ca.

Original USDA Press Release can be found here.

WASHINGTON, July 16, 2018 – Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue today announced that agricultural producers affected by hurricanes and wildfires in 2017 now may apply for assistance to help recover and rebuild their farming operations. Signup begins July 16, 2018, and continues through November 16, 2018.

“Hurricanes and wildfires caused billions of dollars in losses to America’s farmers last year. Our objective is to get relief funds into the hands of eligible producers as quickly as possible,” said Secretary Perdue. “We are making immediate, initial payments of up to 50 percent of the calculated assistance so producers can pay their bills.”

Additional payments will be issued, if funds remain available, later in the year.

The program, known as the 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program (2017 WHIP) was authorized by Congress earlier this year by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018.

Eligible crops, trees, bushes, or vines, located in a county declared in a Presidential Emergency Disaster Declaration or Secretarial Disaster Designation as a primary county are eligible for assistance if the producer suffered a loss as a result of a 2017 hurricane. Also, losses located in a county not designated as a primary county may be eligible if the producer provides documentation showing that the loss was due to a hurricane or wildfire in 2017. A list of counties that received qualifying hurricane declarations and designations is available at Eligibility is determined by Farm Service Agency (FSA) county committees.

Agricultural production losses due to conditions caused by last year’s wildfires and hurricanes, including excessive rain, high winds, flooding, mudslides, fire, and heavy smoke, could qualify for assistance through the program. Typically, 2017 WHIP is only designed to provide assistance for production losses, however, if quality was taken into consideration under the insurance or Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) policy, where production was further adjusted, the adjusted production will be used in calculating assistance under this program.

Eligible crops include those for which federal crop insurance or NAP coverage is available, excluding crops intended for grazing. A list of crops covered by crop insurance is available through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Actuarial Information Browser at

Eligibility will be determined for each producer based on the size of the loss and the level of insurance coverage elected by the producer. A WHIP factor will be determined for each crop based on the producer’s coverage level. Producers who elected higher coverage levels will receive a higher WHIP factor.

The 2017 WHIP payment factor ranges from 65 percent to 95 percent, depending upon the level of crop insurance coverage or NAP coverage that a producer obtained for the crop. Producers who did not insure their crops in 2017 will receive 65 percent of the expected value of the crop. Insured producers will receive between 70 percent and 95 percent of expected value; those who purchased the highest levels of coverage will receive 95-percent coverage.

Each eligible producer requesting 2017 WHIP benefits will be subject to a payment limitation of either $125,000 or $900,000, depending upon their average adjusted gross income, which will be verified. The payment limit is $125,000 if less than 75 percent of the person or legal entity’s average adjusted gross income is average adjusted gross farm income. The payment limit is $900,000, if 75 percent or more of the average adjusted gross income of the person or legal entity is average adjusted gross farm income.

Both insured and uninsured producers are eligible to apply for 2017 WHIP. However, all producers receiving 2017 WHIP payments will be required to purchase crop insurance and/or NAP, at the 60 percent coverage level or higher, for the next two available crop years to meet statutory requirements. Producers who fail to purchase crop insurance for the next two applicable years will be required to pay back the 2017 WHIP payment.

To help expedite payments, a producer who does not have records established at the local USDA service center are encouraged to do so early in the process. To establish a record for a farm, a producer needs:

  • Proof of identity: driver’s license and Social Security number/card;
  • Copy of recorder deed, survey plat, rental, or lease agreement of the land. A producer does not have to own property to participate in FSA programs;
  • Corporation, estate, or trust documents, if applicable

Once signup begins, a producer will be asked to provide verifiable and reliable production records. If a producer is unable to provide production records, USDA will calculate the yield based on the county average yield. A producer with this information on file does not need to provide the information again.

For more information on FSA disaster assistance programs, please contact your local USDA service center or visit


USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.

New Cover Crops and Water Quality Fact Sheets, Infographics and Slide Set Now Available

Barges carrying agricultural products aren’t the only traffic on the Mississippi River. Nutrients and sediment from across the Mississippi River Basin travel down the river until reaching the Gulf, where they linger and create low oxygen “dead zones” in which many fish cannot survive.
Monitoring of the Gulf hypoxic zone has shed some light on the important connections between agricultural practices and water quality. Although some practices contribute to the problem, other practices – like cover crops – provide a much needed solution.
In a review of 98 publications, SARE and the University of Missouri staff identified how cover cropping influences soil and nutrient losses from agricultural fields, water infiltration and soil organic matter. SARE’s new Cover Crops and Water Quality resource series includes free materials to help educators, farmers and others learn and share how cover croping can improve water quality.
Cover Crops and Water Quality resources include five fact sheets, three infographics and a PowerPoint presentation template that can be downloaded and used for outreach and educational purposes.

Farmshare is hiring! To apply, submit your resume and cover letter along with two references to

Click position title for a detailed description. Please include which position you are applying for in the subject line.

Mobile Market Manager

Expected start date: Monday, September 10

Application closes Thursday August 9


Mobile Market Coordinators

(3 positions available)

Expected start date: Monday, September 24

Application closes Thursday August 30