Staff and Board

Fairview Gardens Center for Urban Agriculture | Staff and Board | Executive Director | Lacey BaldiviezLacey Baldiviez

Executive Director

Everybody eats, but not everybody can afford, has access to, or knows the biological value of what we put in our bodies every day.  After receiving the diagnosis of a congenital heart defect as a child and open-heart surgery as a result, Lacey developed a tenacious commitment to healthful living.  She had successful basketball careers in both high school and college, where she studied biology, traveled to South America, and worked on an animal sanctuary as a student intern.  After working as a personal trainer and at a medical reference laboratory, Lacey determined that nutrition was the key to understanding the connections between energy, healing, and performance.

Lacey earned a PhD in International and Community Nutrition at UC Davis, where she worked on a research project to improve pregnancy and birth outcomes through nutritional interventions in West Africa.  It was there that she discovered the central role of agriculture in the community, its long-reaching impacts on the environment, and its commonality across almost all cultures in the world! Lacey started out with the UC Davis student farm and became a harvest leader with the non-profit organization, Community Harvest of Davis.  She received formal farm training at the California Farm Academy in Winters, CA, to which she attributes her thorough knowledge of efficiency, farm business practices and regulations, and her love of sustainable agriculture education.  Fairview Gardens is the perfect organization for Lacey to call home, offering her home community organic locally-available produce, environmental education, and a beautiful spot in the sunshine!

Marla Greer

Education Director

Marla landed at Fairview Gardens after growing up and studying in Florida. It was in her 2nd year of college that she began volunteering at the community gardens on campus, from there she found her way into a leadership role of a student run organization, FARM- Food Activists Revolutionizing Meals. Paired with a degree in Environmental Science, she realized working with the land harmoniously with children was her true calling. Her time at Fairview has served as an absolutely pivotal life experience. She thrives at the intersection of regenerative agriculture and childhood education. She leads experiential learning programs for kids of all ages and digs her hands deep in the soil to cultivate nutritious food for the community.

Abel Basch

Farm Manager

Michael Ableman

Michael Ableman

Founding Director

Michael Ableman is a farmer and Founding Director of the Center for Urban Agriculture where he farmed from 1981-2001. He is the author and photographer of From the Good Earth (Abrams, 1993), On Good Land (Chronicle Books, 1998), and Fields of Plenty: A farmer’s journey in search of real food and the people who grow it. (Chronicle Books, 2005). Michael now farms on Salt Spring Island in British Columbia at Foxglove Farm.

Visit Michael at Fields of Plenty

Interview with Michael by Arnie Cooper

Board Members

  • Matt Buckmaster, President
  • Krista Harris, Vice President
  • Chuck Woodburn, Treasurer
  • Barry Tanowitz, Secretary
  • Jordan benShea
  • Nathan Chapman
  • Dallas Chapman
  • Heidi Jones

Advisory Board

  • Wendell Berry
  • Jeff Bridges
  • Yvon Chouinard
  • Wes Jackson
  • Anthony Rodale
  • Marshall Rose
  • Alice Waters


  • Cox Communications
  • Wells Fargo
  • Montecito Bank & Trust
  • NHH & Co.
  • Mission Wealth
  • Innovative Workshop
  • Scoop
  • Refugio Ranch
  • SB Team Sports
  • Full of Life Flatbread
  • Yardi