The man who needs no introduction. Whether you call him Mark, Marky, Mr. Lipson or Slippy, you know that this man's generous heart shines in all that he does.
The layers of crisis are real and very dire, but we can help lighten the load. Mark has done so much for the organic sector and this earth-connected community we call home. Now it’s our turn to show him how much we care.
Over his 40 years of service, Mark has mentored and supported many of today’s organizational leaders. The list of his volunteer and community-building achievements is endless. I, Liz Birnbaum, founder and CEO of The Curated Feast, am one of the lucky mentees. I also lovingly call him my adopted California dad (though I've done that behind his back until now).
You know that Mark is one of the original founders of the organic movement we have today. You know that he was the first paid employee of California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF), and among so many other professional and community accomplishments, has been a Partner at Molino Creek Farm since 1983.
But did you know that Mark is under tremendous stress and very much needs our help?
As he turns 64 (what I’ll always think of as Sgt. Pepper age) on October 19th, it's not only time to reflect on this man’s tremendous gifts to the world, but it’s time to step up and support him.
These funds will make it possible to:
+ Repair the infrastructure of Mark and Cassandra’s home (the many parts not covered by insurance).
+ Repair the domestic water and fire-fighting supply—which we know will be essential in the coming years.
+ Remove approx. 500 (literal) tons of Douglas Fir tree that came down in the front yard.
+ Create an additional living space for on-site help (one of Cass and Mark’s kids) for fire recovery and Cassandra’s care.
+ Upgrade Mark’s vehicle, which was damaged due to the fire, so he has transportation for an upcoming wet winter.
Searching for the C word(s).
Mark has been his partner Cassandra's primary caregiver since her cancer diagnosis in 2019. As she completed her treatment in March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, severely hindering Mark’s ability to regain viable work. Cass now needs surgery imminently due to unforeseen rare complications.
A 20-year cancer survivor himself and someone who lives with congenital heart condition that has required multiple surgeries, Mark also carries the burden of personal health concerns.
Then came the fire.
The CZU Complex Fires tremendously damaged the Molino Creek Farm Collective. Mark’s home was thankfully not destroyed (because of hero Bob Frank!), however the damage to the land and community was immense. Busy managing the Molino Creek Farm GoFundMe and other disaster recovery, he personally needs our support!
Molino Creek is covered in ash.
I went up to Molino Creek last weekend, and seeing the dome, the land, and the lines that fire burned on the homes gave me tears, goosebumps, and deep shock. The impact on the hearts and minds of the whole community cannot be overstated.
Folks, these are tough times for all. The only way we’re going to get through this is by loving and supporting one another as we each carry the burden of challenging times and a changing climate. Right now, it’s time to surround Mark and Cass with support and love. Anything you can do that will give him a birthday boost will be appreciated with virtual hugs and/or kisses (by request) from Mark himself.
- Danielle Rolli
- Jennifer Winders
- Corey Block
- Eric Winders
- James Gellar