In 2011, the Michigan Farmers Market Association launched the Market Manager Certificate Program (MMCP) with the goal of professionalizing the role of farmers market managers. Becoming a certified market manager equips individuals with the skills, abilities, and networks necessary to provide leadership for thriving farmers markets.
Throughout the history of this program that has certified more than 250 market managers across 6 states, there has been one individual who has made significant personal and professional investments in helping the program and the market managers it trains succeed. Julia Darnton is not only an alumnus of the inaugural class, but she continues to go above and beyond to support the program each and every year. Whether in her capacity as a former board member of the Downtown Saginaw Farmers’ Market, as a MIFMA Board member and professional development committee chairperson, or in her role as an Educator with MSU Extension, Julia has invested countless hours and immeasurable energy in helping this program become the premier certification program in the nation. Julia has hosted dozens of webinars, delivered presentations on a variety of topics, helped identify and recruit participants and presenters, helped craft program design and delivery, and served as an advocate for program resources. Without Julia’s investment, the program would not be what it is today.
In honor of Julia’s investment, MIFMA is proud to announce the creation of the Julia A. Darnton Market Manager Certificate Program Scholarship Fund.