Terry Durham joined the organic farming movement in 1987 after 20 years of growing organic fruits and vegetables. He instituted Missouri’s second CSA, which served 90 families from 1989 to 1995. He held the position of President of the Missouri Organic Association, which he co-founded, for several terms, and was a board member of the Ozark Organic Growers Association. Terry became active in the Elderberry Improvement Project as a donator of germplasm. His elderberry plantation was among the first to use the recommended culture methods for varieties developed from wild Missouri elderberry plants. He continues to work closely with the research team. Subsequently, he raised the largest elderberry acreage in the United States. Terry spends a great deal of time recruiting growers and teaching them how to grow and harvest elderberries and how to prepare their crop for market. He has developed two unique products using a proprietary process under the River Hills Harvest label. Terry gives farm tours, tastings and sponsors Elderberry Mentoring Workshops, as well as performing custom planting and management work.
Andrew Thomas is a Research Assistant Professor in Horticulture/Agroforestry at University of Missouri’s Southwest Research Center, Mt. Vernon. He received his B.S. in Horticulture from the University of Missouri, and his M.S. in Agronomy from Iowa State University. Andy enjoys working with a wide variety of horticultural crops and crop production techniques. His research projects at the Southwest Center have included black walnuts, pecans, elderberries, grapes, apples, asparagus, wildflowers, medicinal herbs, persimmons, pawpaws, hickories, prairie restoration, and a solar-heated greenhouse, resulting in more than 40 peer-reviewed scientific papers. He also farms 52 acres, tending a variety of fruit and nut trees, and is co-owner of Rising Creek Nursery.