Diversity, Equity and Inclusion 

At the Organic Association of Kentucky (OAK) we recognize that truly resilient agricultural networks depend on equitable distribution of resources and power for all groups who have been, and still are marginalized. 


Our country has long-standing policies that marginalize, displace and oppress Black, Indigenous, and immigrant communities; people of color; LGBTQIA and the poor. These include laws that restrict access to credit, loans, and land; uneven access to education and healthcare; and other practices of extraction of wealth, natural resources, and human beings: issues that are inseparable from food access and quality, agricultural production, ecological health and economic viability. 


OAK’s mission is to advance organic regenerative agriculture in Kentucky, improving our future together through ecological resilience, farm economic viability, community health and social justice in our regional food system. Growing equity and power throughout the food and farming landscape is critical for true change as we work towards environmental justice, climate justice, economic justice, and food justice. 


Supporting and building a just, equitable, diverse and thriving foodshed is critical for our shared future. OAK’s programs and partnerships work to create opportunities for all to engage in growing a food system that improves the health of the environment and communities who rely on it. OAK’s programs work to advance organic agriculture and resilient farming practices throughout regional agricultural food networks in ways that address systemic forms of inequality and resulting imbalances of power. Specifically, through our commitments and activities, we aim to implement a plan for equitable governance, build programs that transfer wealth to historically underserved farmers and small farm operators, and design for mutual growth by letting farmer voices and experiences lead our programming.  


In addition to this outward work, OAK will continue to hold its staff and leadership accountable for identifying unequal distributions of wealth and power, naming and unlearning racist ideas and habits, and working with a constellation of agricultural stakeholders to radically reimagine the full potential of our regional food system. We aim to provide ongoing professional development opportunities that enable our staff, board, advisors and farmer members to work toward building equity and power in the food and farming system.


As a young organization with some founders and leadership that benefit from the privileges of race, ethnicity and class, we acknowledge that we have significant resources, and lifting up the work of others and working in allied collaboration is central to this work. OAK is committed to long-term learning and action around diversity, equity and social inclusion. We welcome your participation in this journey and feedback on the work. If you would like to share ideas or join in the process, please contact OAK’s Equity Committee at [email protected]