November 15, 2021

Dear CSU Community,

Hello, everyone—and Happy Monday! I’m delighted to share with you all today that my recorded conversation with our 2021-2022 Rams Read author Natasha Bowens Blair is now available for your viewing pleasure on the “Tell Me More . . .” page on my website.

Not sure you want to watch the whole conversation? Check out this moment when I shared a story about my own family and I think you’ll see how much fun we had together.

Natasha was an amazingly candid, generous conversationalist and it was such an honor to sit down with her. If you haven’t had the opportunity yet to read her book, The Color of Food: Stories of Race, Resilience and Farming, pick it up now! You can check out a copy from the CSU Libraries.

In the book, Natasha uses stories of individuals to shine light on their unique experiences and to explore larger issues of justice and inclusivity in the food justice movement. When we sat down together, I asked her more about her own story and about what we can do here in Northern Colorado to help make a sustainable and just future in food and agriculture a reality. She talked movingly about her own great-grandmother, whose story she delved into more as she became interested in food justice and in farming. And she urges us all to get involved, to seek out stories and—metaphorically and literally—dig deep into what food justice can look like.

The Rams Read program launched just last year, but already it’s incredibly robust, including teaching resources and suggestions for further reading. The Rams Read website has these resources and more!

My conversation with Natasha is just the latest in an ongoing series of interviews of amazing people. I hope that if you enjoy this video, you’ll visit (or revisit) others. I’ve talked with members of our CSU research community like Dr. Marcela Henao-Tamayo and Dr. Diana Wall, with extraordinary artists like poet Camille Dungy and 2020-2021 Rams Read author Claudia Rankine, and with CSU Extension leader CJ Mucklow—who wears both a metaphorical and literal white hat!

And there will be more amazing conversations to come in this series—so stay tuned.

Have a wonderful week, all of you.