Our Team

Together we keep moving forward.

Patrick McLendon

Executive Director
Wimmy wam wam wozzle!

Jason Craig

Jason brings to GRO an impressive knowledge of nonprofit executive management. ...

Laura Collins

Farmers' Market Manager
Laura Collins is a new farmer to Polk County; committed to organic, sustainable ...

Samantha Arledge

Marketing & Management Intern
Samantha Arledge has deep roots in the Mill Springs community and is interning ...

Our Board

Keeping the ship righted.

Russ Pitts

Russ Pitts is a technology and program management consultant in Lake Lure, ...

Daryl Nelms

Board Member
Daryl is the owner of Swiftwater Farm in Mill Spring.  She is married to David ...

Frank Lilly

Board Member
Owner, operator, and viticulturist extraordinaire of Overmountain Vineyards....

Lee Mink

Board Member
Lee lives in Mill Spring and is married to April Pauley Mink, a Registered ...

Bill Barker

Board Member
Bill and Lee Barker own and operate Emerald Springs Farm, it is focused on ...

Daryl Hardin

Born in Rutherford County, Daryl has lived in the Pea Ridge community in Polk ...

Doug Harmon

Board Member
Doug owns and operates Harmon Dairy in Polk County with his brother Allan. Doug ...
More About GRO


Growing Rural Opportunities desires to be a place that brings together people dedicated to making our corner of the world a better place. GRO seeks to provide living wages, strong benefits, and to keep ourselves well in all aspects. We take time to eat together, drink together, workout, and destress in the best manners we can muster.