RAFI-USA Announces 2022 Come To The Table Conference Plenary Speakers

Media Contact: Beth Hauptle, [email protected], 919.903.2525
Program Contact: Michelle Osborne, [email protected], 919.704.6920

[Pittsboro, NC, UPDATED August 16, 2021] – The Rural Advancement Foundation International-USA (RAFI-USA) today announced that Natalie Baszile and Dr. Norbert Wilson will give the keynote addresses at the 2022 Come to the Table (CTTT) Conference. With funding support from The Duke Endowment, the conference will be held virtually on March 15-16. Along with presentations from Natalie Baszile and Dr. Norbert Wilson, the conference will feature workshops and panels.

Edna Rodriguez, RAFI-USA’s Executive Director shared, “For nearly 15 years, Come to the Table has brought together faith leaders, farmers, and food system advocates to learn together and inspire one another to action. We are excited about the perspectives that Natalie Baszile and Dr. Norbert Wilson will bring to the CTTT community at this upcoming conference.”

Natalie Baszile is the award-winning author of We Are Each Other’s Harvest and Queen Sugar, the latter of which has been adapted for television and was produced by Oprah Winfrey and Ava DuVernay. Natalie’s non-fiction work has appeared in The Bitter Southerner, Lenny Letter, The Best Women’s Travel Writing, and other anthologies. The Southern California native is also a member of the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto. 

Dr. Norbert Wilson serves as the Professor of Food, Economics, and Community at Duke Divinity School and is an ordained vocational deacon in the Episcopal Church USA. Dr. Wilson’s research touches on issues of food waste, access, and choice, and his work has been featured in the American Journal of Agricultural Economics and the Journal of Public Health, among other publications. Prior to coming to Duke, Dr. Wilson was a professor of agricultural economics at Auburn University from 1999-2016. 

The 2022 conference theme is “Spirit, Power, and Connection: Owning Our Food Future.” Throughout the conference, participants will explore the role of connection and agency as crucial steps in building a just and sustainable food system. The conference strives to bring together a diverse collection of faith leaders and laypeople, farmers and farmers market managers, and community organizers and advocates. 

Registration for the conference will open on Wednesday, December 1, and RAFI-USA is currently accepting proposals for workshops. To receive future announcements regarding the 2022 CTTT conference, join our mailing list at http://bit.ly/JoinEmailCTTT

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About the Rural Advancement Foundation International-USA (RAFI-USA) and Come to the Table (CTTT)

RAFI-USA challenges the root causes of unjust food systems, supporting and advocating for economically, racially, and ecologically just farm communities. We envision a thriving, sustainable, and equitable food system: where farmers and farm workers have dignity and agency; where they are supported by just agricultural policies; where corporations and institutions are accountable to their community. RAFI-USA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in Pittsboro, North Carolina, and incorporated in 1990.

Come to the Table is a program of RAFI-USA whose goal is to end hunger by developing connections to create a just food system where food is a human right and those who work in the system have ownership and are treated with dignity. We believe that faith communities have a key role to play in this work.

About The Duke Endowment

Based in Charlotte and established in 1924 by industrialist and philanthropist James B. Duke, The Duke Endowment is a private foundation that strengthens communities in North Carolina and South Carolina by nurturing children, promoting health, educating minds and enriching spirits. Since its founding, it has distributed more than $3.6 billion in grants. The Endowment shares a name with Duke University and Duke Energy, but all are separate organizations.

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