Conservation Agriculture Systems Innovation
University of California
Conservation Agriculture Systems Innovation

CT innovators

Ron Harben - 2013

Ron Harben (Photo: Patrick Cavenaugh)
Ron Harben (Photo: Patrick Cavenaugh)
Author: Jeff Mitchell

This year, we have a very special recognition to make to one of our founding and most stalwart workgroup members for the truly exceptional contributions he has made and the phenomenal dedication he has shown to conservation agriculture in California. 

We recognize the outstanding service Ron Harben has provided to CASI and we wish to thank him for all that he has done to strengthen our efforts and impact.

It has been Ron who has steadfastly encouraged us to be focused, but to also strive big and build far greater capacity.

It was Ron who spearheaded our Workgroup’s Strategic Planning effort and also the major fundraising initiative we’re currently pursuing. 

At the risk of ‘going over the top’ here a bit about what I think about Ron, let me relate a very personal story that to me captures the absolute level of trust we have come to have in Ron as a colleague and very dear friend. 

When I was a young boy, I happened to see the old World War II movie, ‘633 Squadron,’ a thrilling story of some Air Force fighter pilots who were tasked with bombing a very difficult-to-reach German power installation.  Getting to the target required the squadron of pilots to be precise in their flying and to absolutely trust each other.  The success of the mission and indeed, each pilot’s life depended on their squadron partners.  When I saw this film, I thought to myself, ‘That is the type of standard I will use in judging who is a reliable person and who you can trust with your life.’  Ron is one of those few people I know who meets these criteria.  I trust him fully and know he will always come through. 

He has done an enormous amount of good for CASI and we thank him for his great service.

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