New Executive Director Grows Real Local RVA
Samantha Jameson has joined Real Local RVA after more than a decade working in the local food movement advocating for small and community-based farms. As executive director, she looks forward to building on the already robust network of local farmers, producers and businesses in the Richmond area. Her vision is for Real Local RVA to act as the primary hub for networking, education and economic development for those promoting and participating in the local food movement in central Virginia.
Established in 2013, the goal of Real Local RVA was to establish a network of informed, passionate, creative community members working to increase awareness and knowledge of locally grown food. The unique collaboration between many local businesses who are often in competition is one of Real Local RVA’s greatest strengths.
Currently, Real Local RVA advocates for small farms and independent businesses to help build a larger economic impact, creates partnerships and facilitates connections and hosts events centered around highlighting the best of what the Richmond food system has to offer, including its monthly networking meetings that are open to the public. Under Jameson’s leadership and with feedback from focus groups and active and past participants, Real Local RVA hopes to add value to becoming a member by offering: a jobs board to include all food-related jobs within 100 miles of Richmond; a business directory with an interactive map of members and a where-to-buy guide; an improved media kit; and mentorship for small business development, including access to key contacts in financial planning, real estate, insurance and marketing.