Who We Are
Illinois Farmlink Staff
Nathan joined The Land Connection in December 2022 after nine years as Liberty Prairie Foundation’s director of conservation and working lands. There he led the launch and growth of the Northeast Illinois FarmLink program, while also being a catalyst for conservation-oriented, farmland-owning organizations to enhance their farmland management practices collaboratively. He has also worked for Friends of the Chicago River, Conserve Lake County, and a Japanese company for which he organized the export and shipping of Winnebago motorhomes to Japan. Nathan is passionate about finding ways for people and nature to thrive together and believes regenerative agriculture is one of the most important pathways for that to happen.
West Central Illinois
Erica grew up on her family farm in Heyworth, IL where there was always a barn full of animals and a garden full of produce. She continued her education at the University of Illinois studying Animal Science in the College of ACES. After graduation, she started her career at Prairie Fruits Farm and Creamery where she was the herd manager for eight years. She supervised the Animal Welfare Approved herd of 100 milking goats and the dairy staff team. She created Erica Peters Photography in 2020 focusing her lens on farm documentary photography to advocate family farmers. Capturing the heart of each farm has given her a unique perspective that only continues to grow her love for agriculture and the people who represent it.
Erica and her husband have owned a farm in Broadlands, Illinois since 2021 where they manage a herd of fallow deer, along with other animals, an orchard, and a garden. She enjoys being outside working on their farm, music, baking, and getting together with family. Erica joined The Land Connection because she has a passion for helping farmers achieve their goals which is very much rooted in her life experiences in agriculture and her work with photography.
Coordinator & Navigator
After working with Northeast Illinois FarmLink at Liberty Prairie Foundation, Jeanne transitioned to The Land Connection to implement the statewide Illinois FarmLink program. Prior to working in land access, Jeanne spent five seasons farming at various small-scale operations around the country. Most recently she worked at a full-diet CSA farm in upstate New York and a pasture raised livestock farm in Kankakee. As FarmLink Coordinator, her vision is to see more farmers and landowners working together to ensure farming remains a viable profession for future generations. Jeanne dreams of the day where she grazes a herd of dairy gals on natural prairie and enjoys espresso and toast with fresh butter after morning milkings.
Noah’s exposure to agriculture began in the classroom as he researched nitrogen cycling dynamics in the Mississippi River floodplain. After completing his master’s degree from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, he found that his hands preferred working in the soil to tapping on a keyboard. So, he began work on a local vegetable farm before getting diverse experience on other farms around the country for several seasons. Noah started BeetRoot Farm in Carbondale in 2022 and is excited to use his farming and land access experiences in his role at The Land Connection to help other beginning farmers. He is passionate about contributing to the growth of local food communities in Illinois.