MIDWEST ORGANIC AND SUSTAINABLE EDUCATION SERVICES INC

aka "MOSES" and Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service   |   Spring Valley, WI   |  mosesorganic.org

Mission

"MOSES educates, inspires, and empowers farmers to thrive in a sustainable, organic system of agriculture."

Ruling year info

1996

Executive Director

Lori Stern

Main address

PO Box 339

Spring Valley, WI 54767 USA

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Formerly known as

WI Chapter Organic Crop Improvement Association Educational Fund, Incl

EIN

39-1824623

NTEE code info

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (K01)

Land Resources Conservation (C34)

Management & Technical Assistance (D02)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

There is a need for more organic production and more organic acres. While growing demand creates significant motivation for the adoption of organic practices, positive benefits to the environment are a strong consequence of any change. However, transition to organic continues to be challenging for farmers. There are unfamiliar risks involved. Weed management, the learning process, and record keeping are the most significant barrier to organic transition. Mentorships from experienced farmers, one-on-one support and in-person workshops are the most valuable sources of support. While farming overall takes a huge skill set, successful organic production is an even more complex management task. There is a lot to learn, even for established farmers. MOSES has a proven track record of providing farmer-focused education and resources in formats that work well for farmers wishing to improve their operations.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Grow Organic

The Grow Organic Program has a number of sub-programs and projects. All are united by the idea that farmers need up-to-date information to help them farm successfully using organic methods. Under this umbrella we have an Organic Specialist Team that answers our farmer help-line, and who run our Farmer to Farmer Mentoring Program and our New Organic Stewards program (both programs support new farmers). We also include most of our information supply routes in this category. These include the Organic Broadcaster bi-monthly newspaper, monthly e-news, over 30 regularly updated fact sheets, our Organic Resource Directory, the Guide to Organic Certification, and many other resources available in print or on line for free. MOSES also offers two podcasts: The MOSES In Her Boots podcast for women farmers and the MOSES Organic Farming Podcast.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Each year over 3,000 farmers, researchers, educators, students, ag business people and supporters join us in La Crosse, WI for 3 days of stimulating farmer-led education, networking opportunities and fabulous food and fun. The largest organic farming conference in the country, this banner event will be in its 30th year in 2019.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Young adults

The MOSES Organic Broadcaster newspaper, first published in 1992, is a bi-monthly farmer-focused news publication that covers organic production on farms and what’s happening in the organic community.

This 20-page newspaper is distributed FREE to organic farmers, processors, certifiers and others interested in organic agriculture. Inside each issue are stories about organic farming practices, research updates, advice from Organic Specialists, book reviews, news/events in the organic farming community, and classified ads.

The current circulation is approximately 14,000 and the newspaper comes out online and via mail in the middle of January, March, May, July, September, and November.

Population(s) Served
Farmers
Adults

Where we work

Affiliations & memberships

Force for Positive Change 2021

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

As a result of MOSES' activities:
• More farmers will be farming organically.
• More acres of farmland will be managed using ecologically-sound, regenerative practices of organic farming.
• The availability of organic agricultural products will increase.
• Farmers, decision makers, and others will gain a deeper understanding of, appreciation for, and commitment to, soil and water conservation and earth-conserving agriculture.

MOSES keeps a set of core values to drive our work:
Empowering farmers to thrive in a sustainable, organic system of agriculture
Sharing the organic message from a positive perspective
Farmer to farmer learning
Delivering exceptional service
Welcoming new ideas, honoring history
Cultivating a community of cooperation and sharing

MOSES was created in response to increasing demand for educational resources for those interested in organic agriculture. MOSES has developed an enduring reputation as a leader, strong partner, and well-respected source of quality, targeted, farmer-focused information and resources.
Our Executive Director works with a board of directors, a majority of whom are themselves organic farmers, to lead the organization. The Organic Specialist Team meets the rising educational needs of the organic farming movement. A stable and capable staff provides administrative and program support.
MOSES highly values partnerships, and regularly partners with other nonprofits, businesses, universities and government institutions to add value to both our and their projects and activities. Partners frequently co-host field days, are sponsors and exhibitors of the MOSES Organic Farming Conference, and team members of projects such as the New Organic Stewards and MOSES Farmer-to-Farmer Mentoring Project.

For the past several years MOSES has provided education and resources to over 20,000 constituents per year. We continue to see rising numbers of participants at our events, and more people accessing resources through our website. We actively refine and adapt our programs in response to feedback, which we regularly seek. Besides our popular conference, which encompasses about half of our budget and time, we have several popular ongoing programs, including:
* New Organic Stewards Program
* Fearless Farm Finances book and workshops
* Farmer-to-Farmer Mentoring program
*Bi-monthly Organic Broadcaster newspaper
*The Organic Link e-news
*Farmer Organic Info Help service
*On-farm field days
*Numerous partner projects offering diverse education, from mentoring to organic grain farmers to case studies of organic transitions and programs on crop insurance options for organic farmers.
*and much more!

Financials

MIDWEST ORGANIC AND SUSTAINABLE EDUCATION SERVICES INC
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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MIDWEST ORGANIC AND SUSTAINABLE EDUCATION SERVICES INC

Board of directors
as of 5/18/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Mr. David Perkins

Vermont Valley Community Farm


Board co-chair

Mr. Reginaldo Haslett-Marroquin

Regenerative Agriculture Alliance

Term: 2020 - 2023

Mike Bollinger

River Root Farm

Sylvia Burgos Toftness

Bull Brook Keep

Dela Ends

Scotch Hill Farm

David Perkins

Vermont Valley Community Farm

Charlie Johnson

Johnson Farms

Sara Tedeschi

Dog Hollow Farm

Darin Von Ruden

Ruden Family Farm

Clare Hintz

Elsewhere Farm

Reginaldo Haslett-Marroquin

Regenerative Agriculture Alliance

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 05/18/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or other sexual orientations in the LGBTQIA+ community
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

Disability

We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity strategies

Last updated: 05/04/2020

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.