the people of Yesod Farm+Kitchen



Steward in Residence

SJ is co-founder of the Jewish Farmer Network and steward-in-residence at Yesod Farm+Kitchen. In between adventures into the woods and waterways, they studied public policy and socio-economic injustice at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Since graduating from UNC, they have been traveling through America's side streets and byways, growing organic produce for donation at educational farms and community gardens, and consulting with organic businesses and community agriculture non-profits. Previous clients and collaborators include The Lord's AcreLucky Jack CoffeeLiving Web FarmsOrganic Growers SchoolHazonEarthaven Ecovillage, and Heartnectar Beeswax + Botanicals. SJ believes that Jewish agricultural wisdom offers modern farmers and stewards compelling questions, tools, and technologies for creating more just and regenerative communities for all.



Scholar in Residence

Born and raised near Chicago, Justin's interest in Jewish wisdom began around age 12. After studying ancient history, archaeology, anthropology, and literature at Hampshire College, Justin began learning traditional Jewish texts and became ordained as a rabbi in 2011. During his time serving congregations in Bangor, ME and Asheville, NC, Justin developed a reputation as a dynamic teacher and speaker being selected as one of the most inspiring rabbis of 2016 by The Forward. As Rabbis Without Borders fellow, Justin believes all expressions of Jewish identity are authentic and valuable. Published in numerous books, articles, and websites, Justin has been teaching about the intersections of Jewish wisdom, environmental stewardship, and ancestral agricultural wisdom for over 20 years. Justin left the rabbinate in 2020 to help create Yesod Farm+Kitchen and fulfill his lifelong of becoming a farmer.



Yesod Farm+Kitchen seeks collective liberation with the land through Jewish agriculture, mutual aid, and growing relationships across difference. We steward 16 acres of Tsalaguwetiyi (Cherokee) and Catawba homelands, 25 minutes from Asheville, NC. We embody Jewish ancestral wisdom by offering this land as a resource for collective nourishment and safety for those most impacted by systems of harm, namely BIPOC, LGBTQIA+ folks, and justice seekers. Yesod offers free and sliding scale retreat space, experiential education at the intersections of Judaism and agriculture, and free produce to people experiencing food insecurity, in partnership with Root Cause Farm.