I was born and raised in the Dominican Republic, many generations removed from any type of agrarian lifestyle. Eventhough I was raised a complete city boy, my father had a need to escape to the countryside whenever he could and would take his family with him. As a child, I spent those days riding in the countryside, looking to see what troubles I could get into. Those days are where the first sparks of longing to be connected to nature began. I would fantasize about being part of the big cattle drives you would see in movies, but never felt that I would be able to experience anything like that.
After graduating from high school, I moved to Florida to attend college and allowed the momentum of life to control where my life was headed. I graduated with a business degree and not long after found myself working in a cubicle sun up to sun down. I quickly realized that a corporate life was not going to be for me no matter how much success I attained.
Looking for a way to escape, I decided to do some research on homesteading. In doing so, I stumbled upon the subject of regenerative agriculture and quickly became obsessed. I spent the next two years consuming all the information I could find on the topic while saving money to make a big change in my life.
I bought a small property in Tennessee, quit my job, and moved. For the next four years, I spent my time putting everything I learned into practice and experimenting with anything that interested me. I sold pasture raised chickens and grass fed lamb at the local farmers market, while also experimenting with pigs, rabbits, bees, trees, gardens, etc. Most of my learning came from making all kinds mistakes.
During this time I realized I had grown a passion for managing grasslands and ruminants. I felt a deep need to focus on learning planned grazing and finding a way to practice at a large scale. I realized I would need a mentor to make it possible. I found out about the Quivira Coalition and their New Agrarian Program, and quickly reached out to one of their mentor ranches which I felt was doing exactly what I wanted to be able to do.
I sold everything and made the move to Colorado to become an apprentice for Louis Martin who runs Round River Resource Management, a custom grazing operation that manages 75,000 acres with a focus on creating future agrarians. I am completing my fourth season with this company. During my time working and learning here, I was given the opportunity to start my own cattle enterprise, and I am currently serving as Director of Production for the operation.
Young Agrarians Panel: Can Agriculture Be Viable?
October 24 | 5:00pm MT
Quivira Coalition’s New Agrarian Program partners with Valley Food Partnership’s Creating Farmers & Ranchers that Thrive as well as New Mexico Acequia Association’s Los Sembradoes Program to hold a panel with 3 young agrarians finding unique ways to grow food for their communities. They will talk about ways they care for the triple bottom line as young agrarians tending leased and family operations.