Rebecca Clay joined the Practical Farmers of Iowa staff in July 2019. She supports the strategic initiatives team by consulting farmers on cover crops, collecting and managing data from on-farm trials and quantifying the sustainability of various cropping systems. She looks forward to continuing to learn from the farmers with whom she works.
Rebecca hails from Le Mars, IA. She developed an interest in soil and the plants, people and societies it sustains while working in her family garden, visiting her uncles’ cattle farm and reading about global food issues.
She graduated from Iowa State University in 2016 with bachelor’s degrees in agronomy and global resource systems, with a minor in Spanish. During her undergraduate studies, Rebecca was fortunate to travel to and work alongside farmers in Uganda, Ghana, Ecuador, Guatemala and, closer to home, Iowa and Nebraska. She has assisted several research projects ranging in topics from soil science to rural sociology.
Rebecca is returning to Ames after spending two years working with smallholder farmers in the foothills of the Himalayas in Nepal. As a Peace Corps volunteer, she worked with community members to diversify diets through production of nutrient-dense foods such as fruits, nuts, mushrooms and vegetables. She also worked to diversify field cropping systems with cover crops and under-used grains.
Rebecca lives for sharing good food and drink with friends and family and exploring the landscape on her bicycle. She is looking forward to getting involved in the greater Ames community.