Our Staff

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Isak Davis They/Them

Union Site Manager

Isak is a recent convert to farming, and has since been delighted working with the cycles of nature. Their ancestors commercially farmed in West Michigan and Isak feels connected with their life experiences as they work with the earth, although farming in a regenerative way is Isak’s approach. They are passionate about anti-racism and radical peacemaking and hope to see New City Neighbor’s values become a part of the larger society we live in. Isak has an undergraduate degree in Religious Studies and Chemistry and loves to see connections in the world around them. You can find them hammocking, making prints, and enjoying nature by the lakeshore.

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Miles Wood He/Him

Farmhouse Site Manager

Miles became a farmer to focus on connecting to the community, the land, and to honor his ancestors. He completed the Organic Farmers Training Program at Michigan State University in 2021. His objectives through agriculture include ending food apartheid, dismantling racism in the food system, and combating climate change. Miles believes in a time when humans will come together and put aside their differences to solve these “unsolvable” world problems. If he’s not farming, you can find him skateboarding, snowboarding, or playing the guitar.

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Luke De Haan He/Him

Café Coordinator

Luke’s earliest memories are of helping his mom with the family garden behind their house. Growing and preserving food has been an important part of his family’s seasonal rhythms as far back as he can remember. When he’s not gardening, Luke loves expressing creativity through food. Food has been a way for Luke to explore cross-culturally. Four years in West Africa introduced him to myriad flavors and foods he would never have encountered in his home context. For him exploring and honoring another’s customs and traditions best happens around a dinner table.

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Sierra West-Smith She/Her

Neighborhood Engagement Coordinator 

Sierra has been involved with New City Neighbors for many years. She started working with the organization as a youth employee as a freshman in high school. Currently she is in college, earning a degree in Social Work. Sierra has passion for helping others and is excited to continue working toward empowering youth.

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Joanna Walters She/Her

Farm Coordinator

Joanna has spent the last 15 years working in non-profits and youth programming. She received her degree from Albion College where she studied Exercise Science, Psychology, and English. She loves adventuring in the outdoors, teaching humans of all ages about conservation ecology, and experimenting in her garden. Her greatest loves are her husband and two sons.

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Lance Kraai He/Him

Operations Director

Lance loves connecting with others through good work and good food. He has been engaged in social enterprise work for 10+ years including urban farming, café management, and building renovations. He holds a B.A. from Calvin College in Religion and an M.Div from Regent College. He is married to his wife Daina, and has three children–Myakah, Aiven and Syder.

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Ricardo Tavárez He/Him

Executive Director

Ricardo is passionate about community development, justice work, and equipping the next generation of urban leaders. He earned a dual bachelor’s degree from Kuyper College in Bible, and International Business & Marketing. He later obtained his M.Div from Calvin Theological Seminary. Ricardo was named as on of the 40 under 40 business leaders by the Grand Rapids Business Journal for 2022. He also serves as a local church pastor at En Vivo Church. In his free time you can find him enjoying the arts and spending time outdoors.