Hi! I’m Holly Born, and I have been a reviewer at QAI since June 2016. It’s a great place to work and I learn something new every day from my amazing coworkers and the wide range of clients we serve.
I’ve been working in organic certification since 2008. I came to QAI from the Washington State Department of Agriculture’s Organic Food Program, where I served as the program’s organic livestock inspector covering Washington and Oregon certified dairy and beef cattle, poultry, sheep and goats, as well as livestock processing and feed production, from the Canadian border to the California border. Before coming to Washington State, I was a reviewer/inspector for the Midwest Organic Services Association, which certifies more organic livestock than any other agency in the U.S.
Prior to getting into the certification world, I spent 10 years as an economics/marketing specialist for the ATTRA National Sustainable Agriculture Information service, answering questions and doing custom research for ag professionals on organics and value-added agriculture. I led and participated in many research and outreach projects while at ATTRA, most notably in investigating how the French Label Rouge poultry program could be adapted to the U.S. for smaller-scale farmers.
I got my B.S. from UC Davis in international agricultural development, followed by an M.A. in agricultural economics from Washington State University and an MBA from the Walton School at the University of Arkansas.
Born in San Diego, I spent every summer until we moved out of the country working on my great-aunt’s dairy farm in Pennsylvania and learning how to grow crops and raise poultry from my grandmother. I’ve raised layers, broilers, sheep and goats on my own. I credit my lifelong love of travel to when my father’s job took the family to Saudi Arabia. We were able to travel to Australia, India and all over the Middle East and Western Europe, and I have loved going to new places ever since! I served in the Peace Corps in Togo, West Africa from 1990 to 1994, focusing on small livestock business development and improving livestock health and productivity. I have also been able to visit Romania and the Republic of Georgia with Volunteers in Cooperative Assistance.
These days I call western Washington home. When not at work, I’m either in Spanish class or outside enjoying the beautiful Pacific Northwest: gardening, wildlife watching, berry picking, camping, sailing, clamming, crabbing and fishing.