Since 2006 Rev David “Farmer Dave” Trujillo has been an active member of FIU’s Agroecology Program through continued USDA support. He is the program’s best example of recruitment through USDA initiatives towards a diverse workforce.
David was brought on to the program through a USDA/FIU high school internship where he conducted research under graduate student supervision in the field of Agroecology. Once enrolled at FIU, David was awarded a four year USDA Multicultural Scholars Program Scholarship of $24k. During this time he assisted in the development of the FIU Organic Garden, now awarded USDA’s “People’s Garden”. He also contributed his time on several topics such as Horticultural Therapy, Native Buffers, Agro-Forestry, Organic Agriculture, Sustainable Agriculture but he is best known for his work in the fields of Urban Agriculture and Spirituality.
David majored in Environmental Studies with a second major in Religious Studies. Under the MSP grant he created a community garden in Pembroke Pines, FL at Medicine Signs Spiritual Center, a Universalist Church where he was later ordained as Reverend. On campus he created a Meditation garden where he would invite various student clubs to enjoy and relax while practicing agro ecological techniques. The connection between spirituality, agriculture and ecology really motivates him to create projects focused on Food Security while taking into account social dynamics and economic sustainability.
David participated in local projects such as assisting in the creation of a community garden at a North Miami nursing home through Catholic Health Services. David also contributed time towards budgeting and initial garden plans for the Education Effect, a $1 Million Grant from CHASE Bank given to FIU towards curriculum development and creation of an Organic Garden and Aquaculture Lab at Miami Northwestern Senior High School. David was hired as head grower at Roots in the City in Overtown Fl. He also helped create UrbanGro INC a green space designing company. David incorporated his own company, Farmer Dave CORP, dedicated to sustainable urban agriculture.
Outside of Florida, David was selected for two Summer HACU Internships with the USDA Forest Service. First internship was with the Forest Service RMRS Albuquerque lab in New Mexico, where he assisted various researchers on topics ranging from climate change, post fire studies, reintroduction of endangered species and sociology. On his second internship he worked with the Forest Service Washington office with the Watershed, Fish, Wildlife, Air and Rare Plants Staff Area.
Currently David is a CHLI Global Leaders intern with the US House of Representatives, working with Rep. Henry Cuellar from the 28th district of Texas at his Washington Office. During this time he will be studying at George Washington University as part of the Semester in Washington Politics Program. In efforts to expand his skills and experience abroad, he is a Fulbright Research Candidate planning on researching Urban Agriculture in the Western Hemisphere. David plans on going onto graduate school for a career in Agronomy, Horticulture, Agroforestry/ecology, Agribusiness, or Agricultural Leadership. We wish him the best and are proud of his continued success in the field of Agriculture.