Most of us are used to shopping in stores where one section is devoted to fresh produce, but the rest of the food for sale is either boxed, canned, or shrink-wrapped. Jamila Norman is an urban farmer and food advocate teaching the world about the benefits of growing our own food and eating fresh fruits and vegetables—whether grown on a community farm or in our own backyards.
Norman is an internationally recognized urban farmer and food activist based in Atlanta, Ga. In 2010, she founded her own independent organic urban farm, Patchwork City Farms, which she operates full time. Her farm and work has been featured in publications such as SeedStock.com, Modern Farmer Magazine, The Library of Congress and Southern Foodways Alliance oral history project. She is currently the manager and one of the founding managers of the Southwest Atlanta Growers Cooperative, which is centered around black urban farmers in Atlanta’s booming urban agriculture movement. She served as U.S. delegate to Slow Food’s Terra Madre Salone del Gusto in Turin, Italy in 2014. Norman is also co-founder of EAT MOVE BeWELL, an initiative that is focused on including more fresh and living foods into our diet, promoting movement for health and wellness, and advocates for communities of color. She hosts “Homegrown,” a show on the Magnolia Network, which is currently on its third season, helping families transform their outdoor spaces into backyard farms. Most recently, Norman has joined the board of Georgia Organics, a non-profit organization which bridges together organic food from Georgia farms to Georgia families.