Mark Lipson is a 30-year pioneer and influential leader in the organic farming and food community in California and nationally. Mark recently received the “Champion of Sustainable Agriculture Award” from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition. He served a 4 ½ -year term of service as the Organic and Sustainable Agriculture Policy Advisor in the Office of the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture (until late 2014). Since completing his term at USDA, Mark has been appointed as a Research Associate in Organic Agriculture Policy at the University of California at Santa Cruz, affiliated with the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems. Mark graduated with honors from UC Santa Cruz in 1981 with a B.A. in environmental studies. Since 1983 he has been a member in Molino Creek Farm, a cooperative multi-family organic farming community near Davenport, California and the original home of the famed, dry-farmed tomatoes. He was the Assistant Executive Director of California Certified Organic Farmers (’85-’93) and the Policy Director at Organic Farming Research Foundation (’95-2010). Mark serves as a Trustee of the Homeless Garden Project and the Organic Center.