Meet the team that keeps MoCo's gears turning!
The MoCo Board is excited to announce we have hired our inaugural General Manager, Dean Sparks. Welcome! Dean comes to us from Bellingham, Washington where he has been writing his autobiography.
A native of Everett, Washington, Dean has spent 20 years in the organic/natural food industry. Amongst many experiences and skills, Dean has owned and run his own 54-acre organic egg farm, owned a full line of organic dairy products, and worked with noted Chef Mario Batali to open Eataly, a 54,000-square foot eatery in NYC focused on local food.
Dean was Grocery Manager at the GreenStar Food Co-op in Ithaca, New York, and served as General Manager for Hart's Local Grocers, the first grocery retailer in downtown Rochester, New York, in more than 30 years. Dean's career has given him a well-rounded view of the organic/local food industry, from dirt to dinner plate. We are thrilled to have him on board.
Message from the General Manager
When I was looking out the window of my condo in Bellingham, Washington, a few months ago, watching the ocean waves crash against the bay, I couldn’t imagine packing up my worldly possessions for the snow-covered majesty of Northern Vermont.
But then I met this remarkably talented group of volunteers, dedicated to bringing a real food option to their community. I learned about their 6-year effort to raise funds, learn about Cooperative principles, and the joy that shared ownership can bring to those in their communities dedicated to healthy, local food.
I couldn’t pack fast enough.
Passion for local, sustainably raised food is right in my wheelhouse. For nearly 20 years I have worked every day to educate consumers on the myriad of benefits that supporting local farming enterprise brings to struggling economies. I’ve been a farmer, a distributor, a retailer, and a consumer. Along the way, sharing passion for local food has driven my professional life.
I’m blessed to love what I do. I’m thrilled to share my experience with MoCo.
We can’t wait to welcome you in. Come enjoy the bounty of the harvest. Stay awhile. See some friends. Share a recipe or two. Try some great cheese. Leave with a smile and the knowledge you’re supporting local business and eating well at the same time. It doesn’t get much better than that!
Welcome to fresh. Welcome to local. Welcome to MoCo!
Morrisville Food Cooperative
Elizabeth M. Casparian
Elizabeth and her family moved to Vermont in 2016 seeking new ventures in Vermont's growing local and sustainable food world. As a veteran of the not-for-profit world, Elizabeth came to MoCo to lend her help in the last stages of the Member Loan Campaign, Community Engagement, and Membership Drive. Elizabeth is passionately devoted to cooking and supporting the health and well-being of farms and families.
Aisha A. Abbassi
Aisha, originally from Houston, Texas, received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Cornell University in 2016. She was so thrilled by MoCo's mission of bringing the Lamoille Valley community together through the shared love of fresh, local foods, that she up and moved to Vermont to begin creating the new face of MoCo. Among Aisha's favorite things are cherry tomatoes fresh off the vine, tiny wildflowers, and a good ol' breakfast sandwich with local honey.
Born and raised in Vermont, Carlos is incredibly excited to join the MoCo team and bring natural and local foods to the community that he calls home. As a long-time resident of Morrisville, Carlos is more than familiar with the lack of fresh foods available in the downtown area. He looks forward to providing his friends and neighbors with beautiful, fresh products from local farmers and vendors.