Who’s who on the Vital Crew

ohayerMatt O'Hayer, CEO and Owner

Matt O'Hayer & his wife Catherine Stewart started Vital Farms in 2007 with 20 Rhode Island Red hens. From there, Matt set out to prove that it is possible to produce the highest quality food in an environmentally responsible manner from humanely treated animals on a commercial scale. Matt got his start in the egg business in 1968, selling eggs door-to-door as a teenager on the Brown University Campus. He purchased his first farm in 1980. Matt's previous companies have been listed on NASDAQ and in the INC 500. In addition to being a chicken whisperer, Matt is a USCG Master Captain, an accomplished chef, a rescue diver, and has been an instrument pilot for over 30 years.

 

jasonJason Jones, President

A recent entrant into the wonderful world of fatherhood, Jason and his wife Charis were happy to land in Austin after his corporate experience had taken him around the world. An omnivore and entrepreneur at heart, Jason would tell you he's blessed to be part of the farm and the growing movement to get healthier food onto tables across America. When he's not managing the business, Jason can be found tightly wrapped around his daughter Mirabel's little finger.

 

 

russellRussell Diez-Canseco, Vice President of Operations

With invaluable experience in retail and operations gained from six years with H-E-B Grocery, and more recently with Leslie Rudd Investment Company (LRIco), a family office investment company with portfolio companies in retail and wholesale, Russell joined Vital Farms in 2014, excited to help further the cause of sustainable food. He lives in the Austin area with his wife, three children, and their rescue dog, Abby.

 

auroras_bio_picAurora Porter, National Grocery Sales Manager

After cooking her way through the University of Texas School of Journalism, Aurora volunteered on organic farms in Japan, England and Scotland and worked for non-profit organizations. As a native Austinite (and 5th generation Texan), she has also freelanced as an Assistant Editor at Edible Austin Magazine and video editor for youth agriculture non-profit Urban Roots. Helping others enjoy fresh food and finding new ways to tell stories about sustainable agriculture is her favorite way to spend a day! She currently lives in New York City.

 

brent_bio_pic

Brent Brewer, Director of Fulfillment 

Having spent much of his career behind spreadsheets and computer screens, Brent decided to make a change in 2008. Growing up in a rural agricultural town, the urge to be involved with food and farming was natural, as were those long farm days of his youth. Brent discovered Vital Farms in 2010; it embodied the perfect fit of progressive farming solutions within an ailing food industry and the ability to earn a living making a meaningful impact on people's lives.

 

photoScott Price, National Grocery Sales Director

In 2009 Scott created "SRP Consulting" to pursue his passion of assisting in the growth of sustainable businesses. He is committed to working with companies that share his passion for evolving the world to a healthier, greener economy. A 23-year veteran with Whole Foods Market, he always strives for excellence. Over the last 30 years he has played many roles within the organic and natural products industry. In all these roles, he brings a guiding light to the work at hand. Be it day to day operations, merchandising, regional buying, category analysis, increasing sales, managing distribution, vendor development, new store design and development, enhancing communications or leadership, Scott always blends his experience with a vision of growth to create success.

 

danDan Brooks, Director of Marketing and Communications

Dan has lived an improbable life, filled with adventures and tales that could belong on a dusty bookshelf. He has lived alone on a desert island, kept company with dragons and shamans, hunted giant flightless birds with cannibals, shared grub with tree-dwelling pygmies, learned the secrets of the real King Kong, danced and tranced with witches and lions, hunted for sperm whales with ancient mariners. And he has the photographs to prove it. Now having settled down a bit, he is thrilled to be working for a company with a mission. Having spent almost two decades working in Asia, Dan appreciates the issues of global sustainability at a very intimate and localized level, and combines this awareness with artistic and creative flair to communicate Vital Farm’s essential purpose.

 

cherylCheryl K. Degan, Director of Finance

Cheryl is responsible for all areas of finance, accounting, financial reporting, human resources, benefit plans, office administration and information technology. She has been with Vital Farms since Sept 2013 and has over 20 years of accounting and finance experience.  Cheryl started her career with the public accounting firm of Deloitte and Touche and continued as Assistant Controller and later Director of  Finance of Destec Energy, Inc., a subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Company.  After moving to Austin she served as CFO of a commercial printing company for eight years. Cheryl is a C.P.A licensed in the state of Texas, a Notary Public and holds a BBA in accounting.  She’s married, has two children, and serves on the board of Big Brother Big Sisters of Central Texas.

 

jackie-new2Jackie Sleeper, Director of Quality

Jackie’s experience with ethical poultry production began early; she grew up raising chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys on the rolling green hills of her parents’ small Oregon farm. She attended Oregon State University and earned her Honors B.S. in Animal Science, with a focus on Animal Behavior and Bioethics. As a passionate advocate for farm animal welfare, she spent four years with Humane Farm Animal Care as Director of Certification for the Certified Humane® program. Jackie is excited to bring her expertise in animal welfare and quality systems to Vital Farms, and to support production of the best-tasting, most ethical eggs and chicken anywhere! In her down time, she can be found gardening, hiking, biking and generally enjoying the beauty of the Pacific Northwest.

 

vasa_2Vasa Morgan, Fulfillment Coordinator

Vasa grew up on a hobby farm in Magnolia, TX, surrounded by horses, cows, chickens, and a steady supply of puppies and kittens. She studied painting at Texas State University and has since fought the good fight at various non-profits in Portland, OR and Austin, TX. She now helps to coordinate orders and fulfillment for Vital Farms customers nationwide from her home in Half Moon Bay, CA. Once a stalwart vegan and animal rights advocate, Vasa is now a more mellow vegetarian and loves to fry up a couple of humane eggs in the morning (or afternoon, or evening...). She is also a practicing Buddhist, has two feline children, and pedals around town on her trusty Specialized. Vasa has also been spotted shaking her booty at ecstatic dance, reading sci-fi, and taking very romantic walks on the beach.

 

holly_picHolly McClure, Food Service Coordinator

Holly's appreciation for all things food began when she was given her first cookbook at the age of 8. She went into the kitchen to begin teaching herself to cook, and a life-long love affair with food was born. She studied food science formally, and is a Dietetic Technician, Registered. Holly is fascinated by the science of nutrition, commercial food production policy and legislation, and food history and culture. Her two favorite pastimes are travelling and breaking bread with others.  Holly believes that food treated with respect is superior in taste and nutrition, and that the farming practices here at Vital Farms are the future of food in the United States. She is thrilled to be a part of the team! Holly lives with her husband in a noisy apartment on the east side of town, where they dream of one day owning some not-so-noisy land where they can grow some food of their own.

 

damienDamien Daville, Supervisor for Local Deliveries

Early in life I was drawn to working on a farm and lived on "The Farm" outside Summertown, Tennessee for a while. I liked being in the outdoors but I eventually went back to school and studied computer science at Virginia Tech and worked for Dell Computer for nearly ten years. I grew restless with the office work, and moved on, working for myself for a few years. I enjoy camping and the outdoors and like being active in anything I do. I was drawn to Vital Farms back in 2011 by reading about the Company and took advantage of a need for a delivery driver. I liked working for a company that has a philosophy of bringing organic pasture raised eggs and chickens to their customers. My wife and I enjoy travel and camping and we both like to visit flea markets and festivals always looking for old things that may stand out to us. I now have three drivers that work to deliver our eggs and chickens from central Texas all the way to San Antonio and points in between. I split my time helping them get out on their routes and doing logistics at the Distribution Center to keep our customers happy. Often I will also be out on the road taking care of special needs deliveries and filling in when needed for delivery services. I also enjoy making trips to our local farms to pickup eggs and talking to the folks there.

 

tiffTiffany Brown, DFW Sales Queen

Tiffany has been an avid food sourcing advocate from an early age.  Working in her grandfather's home garden as a child every summer, she learned first hand how much better fresh and natural foods can really be.  Her love of all things nature became a staple in her life and coming to be with Vital Farms was truly "organic." "I have worked for insurance companies, mortgage companies, brick and mortar companies and in healthcare.  Vital Farms has been the most natural fit of all.  I call myself a Chef groupie and it's true!  To take something as finite as food and mold it into spectacular and delicious works of art daily is along the lines of being a super hero to me.  I love being able to provide a product that is not only sustainable; it is humane, tasty and organic in nature.  My love of food has come full circle." Tiffany was born in Tulsa, but considers Dallas her home.  She has lived in the DFW area most of her life and has the best group of friends and associates anyone could ask for.  Like a lot of us, she has her eye on a parcel of land perfectly suited for a garden, hens, goats and whatever else comes along.