From our original 2010 organization, we are ever evolving to convey the story of our farm and ranch stays to the experiential travel market. We may be a small team and a small board, but we are passionate about our mission because we are farmers and ranchers too.
U. S. Farm Stay Association (aka Farm Stay USA) founder Scottie Jones and her husband Greg raise grass-fed lamb at Leaping Lamb Farm in the green hills of Oregon’s Coast Range. Since 2007 they have also operated a thriving farm stay where they’ve hosted guests from near and far. Scottie brings years of entrepreneurial experience to Farm Stay USA, having been the Arizona franchisee for the socially-responsible British company, The Body Shop, and having worked in host services and marketing at the Phoenix Zoo, where species survival and conservation were critical components of zoo education.
Now through Farm Stay USA, she hopes to provide an economic, educational, even spiritual bridge for rural and urban Americans eager to renew a healthier food and farm system, and access to memorable and wonderful guest experiences. You can learn more about Scottie and Farm Stay USA from this Forbes article.
Erin brings a unique perspective to the team, having accumulated a decade of experience working as an artist and consultant in advertising in New York City’s art, fashion and beauty scene. Her work has included collaborating with renowned international brands and publications, as well as contributing to the development and growth of a start-up, on-demand beauty service application.
When the Covid19 pandemic began, Erin found sanctuary on a diversified regenerative farm in rural Georgia where she fell in love with the farming lifestyle and quickly realized she would not be returning to the city. Following a couple of years alternating between goat-kidding and working at one of the oldest organic farms in the southeast, Erin and her partner decided to pursue opportunities in the Pacific Northwest. She is now the farm manager at Leaping Lamb Farm in Oregon and is enthusiastic to help Farm Stay USA refine marketing strategies and discover new ways to support farmers in their hospitality endeavors.
Lisa currently lives in Rome, GA where she returned after 10+ years of work in Minnesota in the hospitality arena. She has worked for non-profits and started her own business, Rettlers in 2017, a
Jennifer Adams grew up at The Inn at East Hill Farm in Troy NH and runs the business with three generations of her family. East Hill Farm has a long history of hosting families on the farm, blending farm education with good old-fashioned family fun. After working and growing up on the farm, Jennifer worked for many years as an occupational therapist, then returned to the family business. Her role now ranges from director of the Farm School Program to managing social media and customer service. Jennifer represents the New England/MidAtlantic regions of Farm Stay USA
Karen Searle brings a “hands-on” perspective to our organization. She represents the Intermountain West Region of Farm Stay USA. She is the owner/manager of Montana Bunkhouses Working Ranch Vacations LLC based in Livingston MT where she matches guests with 20 working cattle ranches in that group. The Montana Bunkhouse cooperative is featured on National Geographic’s MapGuide of the Greater Yellowstone Area for having met their criteria for authenticity of experience, culture, and heritage.
Scott Shappell has run Netherfield Natural Farm Bed & Breakfast in Fontana, Kansas since 2013. His background is in hospitality and food service. He grew up on a farm in Kansas, but spent many years in Washington, DC, managing Grillfish in Foggy Bottom. Scott is currently working on opening up a second B&B location nearby to expand the business and promote the farm. Scott represents the Midwest and Plains regions of Farm Stay USA.
Greg Jones is a psychologist and retired community college instructor. He owns and operates Leaping Lamb Farm with his wife, Scottie. He understands group dynamics and is well-versed in the challenges faced by working family farms and ranches in the U.S. Along with Scottie, he represents the Northwest and Pacific Coast regions of Farm Stay USA.
Bill Beckler is the Senior Software Manager for Amazon Web Services OpenSearch and is based in New York City. He was previously founder of lodging search service AllTheRooms. Before that he was manager of marketing analytics and director of innovation at travel booking site lastminute.com. He also co-founded camping booking site Pitchup.com in the UK.
Jodi Benoit is a 5th generation farmer and the farm events manager at her family’s White Oak Pastures in Bluffton, Georgia. She has served many roles on the farm, from working cattle to giving guided tours, in-house marketing and planning events. Jodi represents the Southern regions of Farm Stay USA.
Penny Leff has recently retired from serving as the statewide Agritourism Coordinator with the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources. She has worked with communities throughout California to assist farmers and ranchers in planning, developing and promoting their agritourism operations. Penny lives in Sacramento and enjoys visiting farms and ranches whenever she can.
Ruth and her family moved to Dogwood Hills Farm in Harriet Arkansas a while ago. They wanted to homestead a diversified farm and live a sustainable life where they could bring up their daughter close to the earth. She now has a destination location farm stay, offering not only lodging but classes, a small dairy operation, and even a cooking competition. Ruth is a founding member and the president of the Arkansas Agritourism Association.
Mike Porcaro specializes in helping organizations grow through strategic Communications and Marketing programs. Mike has a long history of working with and supporting local businesses and community-focused organizations. He currently resides in San Francisco CA.
Sheron runs the family farm, inherited from her parents. Scurlock Farms is located in Georgetown TX. She raises cattle, horses, goats and chickens and there is a 20 acre pecan orchard. She has opened up two beautiful homes on the property for farm stays, bakes fresh cookies for guests, and offers tractor rides. Sheron has dived deep into understanding and excelling at the short term rental market and promotes the farm stay niche wherever she can.
Adam Becker fell in love with web development about 25 years ago, back when having animated GIF backgrounds and MIDI music was still a cool thing. Today he runs a team that works on some really cool software. Based in Eugene, Oregon he works to solve issues with the Farm Stay USA website and is also always cooking up new ways to solve problems with code!