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About Us

Here at Oahu Agriculture and Conservation Association, we see the value in everyone. We want to be a catalyst for positive change and appreciate you taking the time to get to know and work with us.


OUR MISSION:  Support sustainable agriculture and conservation through education, research, and partnerships.  

OACA was founded by a group of long-time farmers, business owners, landowners, and land managers who wanted to see ag thrive in Hawaii and be part of that solution.  The founders comprise our board and staff. We operate with that same spirit and intent today and welcome all partners to collaborate and advance the sector together.  


Efforts focus on expanding knowledge, support for producers, and implementation of best management practices for conservation and agriculture.  We have three program areas: 


Farmer and Rancher Education and Training

Together We Farm is the OACA signature producer program, which provides training and support in the following areas:  

  • Soil Health and Nutrient Management

  • Worker Protection Standard

  • Pesticide Safety and Handling 

  • Conservation Planning

  • Farmer-Direct Granting


Since January of 1950, West Oahu Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD)  has advanced stewardship of Hawaii’s soil and water resources.  The landscape of agriculture in Hawaii has shifted from plantation-style agriculture to small-scale operations. With hundreds of novel producers interested in utilizing the land, the leadership of West Oahu SWCD has increased support to educate and implement sustainable practices. OACA is a program manager for West Oahu SWCD.

Economic Development

OACA provides producers with supports to grow business.  We host workshops that feature diverse partners with expertise in: 


  • Business Planning 

  • Farm Planning

  • Feasibility Assessments

  • Conflict Resolution (often financial)

  • Grant and Loan Programs


Staff also provide producers with one-on-one consultation to review grant and loan programs available through partners. Opportunities include: 


  • Manufacturing

  • Branding and Marketing

  • Composting

  • Farm Loans

  • Disaster Assistance

  • Conservation Practices

  • Infrastructure

  • Branding and Marketing

P-20 Initiatives: PreK-College Education

Educational programming for the public, schools, non-formal educators, and colleges is supported by a strong network of partners. 

OACA supports schools and nonprofits such as the Hawaii Farm to School Hui, Future Farmers of America, 4-H and the Hawaii Farm Bureau through in-class presentations, educator workshops, and occasionally strategic planning. 


Outreach is connected to standards and mission-oriented outcomes. 

Educator workshops feature access to curriculum as well as place-based and culturally relevant materials.  Training opportunities, teacher-direct grants, and a network of partners committed to supporting environmental education are shared with participants. Materials are aligned to NGSS and Common Core. Workshops are low to no cost due to our generous sponsors to funders and donors.


OACA is a charitable 501c3.  All donations are used to advance Hawaii agriculture and conservation.  Donations can be allocated for a particular program upon request. 

Meet The Team


Amanda Shaw

Executive Director

Amanda Shaw is the Executive Director of OACA. Raised on the Windward side of Oʻahu (Waimānalo), Amanda’s work over the past 15 years has focused on economic development and social equity in the fields of international development, trade and agriculture. At OACA, she leads strategic visioning for the organization's economic development, training and education and conservation programs.  

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Andreanna Kaluhiokalani



Andreanna is the Outreach Coordinator of OACA. Raised in Makakilo, she is a recent graduate of the University of Hawaii West Oahu majoring in Sustainable Community Food Systems and Political Science. She is an experienced farmer and passionate advocate of Aloha and Malama Aina. At OACA, she is focused on community outreach through in-person contact and through the use of social media platforms. She is eager to help farmers and ranchers throughout the state gain the proper funding resources.


Bri Littlefield

Farm Economic

Development Specialist

Bri Littlefield is the Farm Economic Development Specialist of OACA. A
2022 graduate of GoFarm Hawaii, she brings more than a decade of
experience in nonprofit development and grant writing to OACA. In her role,
Bri assists local producers in identifying and securing funding from public
and private grant programs to help them thrive.

Our Board


Kalani Fronda

Board President

and Founder

Kalani Fronda is a dedicated advocate for agriculture and conservation in Oahu, Hawaii. As the Board President of the Oahu Agriculture and Conservation Association, he leads initiatives and drives impactful change in the local farming community. Kalani's passion for sustainable practices and his leadership skills have made him an influential figure in promoting a thriving and environmentally conscious agricultural sector.


Michelle Gorham

Vice President

and Founder

Michelle Gorham Disc is a visionary leader in the field of agriculture and conservation. As the Vice President and Founder of the Oahu Agriculture and Conservation Association, she has played a pivotal role in promoting sustainable farming practices and preserving the natural resources of Oahu. Michelle's unwavering commitment to the association's mission has made her a respected figure in the industry, inspiring others to join her in building a thriving and eco-friendly agricultural community.


Ramsey Brown

Board Secretary

Ramsey is the Vice President of Diversified Agriculture at Pono Pacific Land Management, overseeing Kuilima Farm and managing eleven partner farmers. With a background in mechanical engineering and a focus on technical innovations, he emphasizes operational efficiencies and power solutions. Ramsey's dedication to local agriculture and membership in the Hawaii Farm Bureau showcase his passion for Hawaii's food system.

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Jason Brand

Board Treasurer

Jason Brand is a devoted distiller at Ko Hana Rum Distillery in Oahu, Hawaii. He also serves as the Treasurer of the Oahu Agriculture and Conservation Association, where he promotes sustainable agricultural practices. Jason's expertise, commitment, and leadership have made him a respected figure in the industry, contributing to both the distillery and the association's success.

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Larry Jefts


Larry Jefts is a prominent figure in agriculture as one of the largest farmers in Oahu, Hawaii. Known for his vast farming operations, he has made significant contributions to the agricultural industry on the island. Larry's expertise and success as a farmer have earned him recognition and respect within the local farming community.

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Joe Para


Joe Para is the Agronomy Lead for Monsanto Kunia where his work focuses on all aspects of farming hybrids and nursery plants on this 2,200 acre parcel; a position he has held for the past 12 years. His career started on Maui where he initially settled his home and heart in the islands for 6 months before relocating to Molokai for approximately 2 years. Joe's connection to ag started long before this, however, through his work with local seed growers in Indiana and Ohio through high school and college. He is a dedicated father and agriculture leader in Hawaii. Joe further serves the ag community as a West Oahu SWCD Director, Hawaii Farm Bureau member, and treasurer of the Kunia Water Cooperative.

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John McHugh


John McHugh, Ph.D., is the State of Hawaii, Department of Agriculture, Pesticides Program Manager.  With 42 years of wide-ranging experience in agriculture as an entomologist, educator, manager and consultant, John has taught at Leeward Community College and the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources.  John also worked at DuPont Pioneer, Hana Hou Seed Harvest, LLC, Sumida Farm, Inc. and Crop Care Hawaii, LLC.  John McHugh is also a dedicated community leader -  serving the Hawaii Farm Bureau, Oahu Resource Conservation and Development Council, and the West Oahu Soil Conservation District. 


Peter Gibson


Peter Gibson is an Oahu native who started his career in conservation with Castle and Cooke at the Dole Wahiawa plantation. Following this, for 25 years he served as the Natural Resource Coordinator for James Campbell’s non developed lands and then as the Project Manager for their Agricultural lands. Peter currently is consulting with Kapolei Property.  As the longest-standing Director on the West Oahu SWCD board, Peter's quiet thoughtfulness is valued as is his commitment to community, ag, and conservation.

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Alan Gottlieb


Alan Gottlieb has also played a pivotal role as a founder of the Oahu Agriculture and Conservation Association, advocating for agricultural and conservation issues. Alan's dedication and leadership have made him a respected advocate for both constitutional rights and sustainable farming practices.


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