SDSPA Contractor Feature
Chris Zdorovtsov started with the South Dakota Specialty Producers Association (SDSPA) in 2016 providing marketing and communication services for the organization. This includes developing and transmitting press releases, promotion materials, our monthly e-newsletters, and website and Facebook content. This spring Chris took on membership coordination as well.
“It has been fun to be a part of local foods in South Dakota. I think back to how working in the Garden Shop at K-mart and my first internship with Pat and Jan Garrity at Garrity’s Prairie Gardens by Yankton started me on this path,” Zdorovtsov said. “I’m grateful for Pat’s patience after almost taking out an apple tree in the orchard the first time I drove a tractor.”
Prior to starting with SDSPA Chris worked for seven years as a Community Development Field Specialist & Horticulture Extension Educator for SDSU Extension. Her work involved helping communities establish farmers markets and community and school gardens across South Dakota. Additionally, she provided support for those interested in direct marketing and local food entrepreneurship and helped with Master Gardener coordination. She left Extension in 2015 to focus more attention at home as a stay-at-home mom and opened Endless Harvest, her contracting business.
Prior to Extension, Chris worked for The Chef’s Garden in Ohio, where she trialed specialty vegetables and herbs sold to chefs at high-end restaurants across the nation. Chris managed a 10-acre research and educational property where over 450 crops were selected and trialed annually. She collected feedback from chefs and guided selection of trialed crops in order to enhance the farm’s inventory. Chris received a degree in Horticulture from Iowa State University and a Master’s in Family and Consumer Sciences from South Dakota State University.
Chris is looking forward to finding out more about the interests and needs members have. “I want to help members connect to committees and projects that could potentially make the changes needed to help our small business owners or enhance the niche and local foods industry in South Dakota,” Zdorovtsov said.
If you have needs or ideas that you think SDSPA can help with, please contact Chris at email@example.com or at 605-681-6793. Your feedback is valued as we plan educational opportunities and tours and work to provide a useful website.