Operations Associate and Administrative Assistant to Wes Jackson
Darlene considers her home turf Brookeville and Marquette, Kansas, and currently lives in rural Saline County. She grew up on a farm, and now farms that land with her husband. She was drawn to The Land Institute by the mission of developing perennial grains, and sees the organization’s research as a way to be good land stewards while still producing food. Darlene holds an Associate of Arts degree in Computer Science and has training in photography, newspaper editing, and bookkeeping. Her past job experience includes a range of clerical positions, but leans most heavily to bookkeeping and accounting work. In addition to keeping up with The Land Institute’s President Emeritus (a “good challenge”, she says), Darlene handles travel logistics for events hosted by The Land. As Operations Associate, she works with the COO to keep the organization humming.
What’s one aspect of your life history that most people don’t know or wouldn’t expect?
That my previous job was at a 10,000-head commercial feedlot.
What else are you passionate about (outside of work)?
The farm where my husband and I live (which has been in my family for nearly 100 years), my three grown children, and my granddaughter.
If you were to write a book, what would it be about?
A fictional history set in pioneer times. Or maybe my non-fiction personal perspective on raising twins.
What were you like at age 10?
I was very much a tomboy. I would do anything outside – including climbing inside the combine to clean the straw walkers (a very hot, itchy job) – to avoid doing chores in the house.
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