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Kirk Vartan: Pizza Guy

Kirk is a New York City native, growing up on the 10th floor of a Manhattan apartment. He has been in the tech industry for 20 years, leaving his hi-tech career in 2006 to create A Slice of New York, after years of not being able to find a real NY slice. He is very passionate about appropriate land-use and community activism.  He was the founder of his neighborhood group on (Forest-Pruneridge), is Vice President of the Cory Neighborhood Association, and President of the Winchester NAC (Neighborhood Action Coalition).  Most recently he has been an advocate for progressive urban design on the Santa Clara BAREC site - an agrihood - a development approved by the City Council in September 2015.


Alrie Middlebrook: President, California Native Garden Foundation

Alrie Middlebrook, an author and expert in her field, has been designing and building California native gardens for over 30 years. Founding the California Native Garden Foundation in 2006, she has been working hard to bring healthy land use to schools and communities throughout the area.



Christopher Stanton: CNGF Newsletter Editor-in-Chief

Longtime Silicon Valley resident with experience in semiconductor fabrication and high technology whose investigative background also extends into the natural sciences. Extensive online writings have had well in excess of one million page views and cover a wide variety of topics ranging from microelectronics to international travel. As a native-born Californian, extensive exploration of this state in order to gain an understanding of its rich biodiversity and tremendous agricultural resources has always been a priority.

The Santa Clara County Open Space Agrihood project represents history turning full circle with respect to reinvigorating a once outstanding agricultural legacy that originally predominated in The Valley of Heart's Delight. Proposals to designate the region as a National Heritage Site must recognize this natural inheritance while encouraging sustainable modern urban farming practices that will reduce currently extravagant Food Miles and the environmental damaged caused by both this needless shipping of supermarket groceries along with other harmful land-use practices related to modern bulk agriculture.

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