Katie Brandt

Katie Brandt

Contact Me

Graduate Program Coordinator
Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition



Katie Brandt’s two decades of farming experience inform her every day when she is working alongside aspiring and beginning farmers to translate their skills and vision into attainable farm goals and farm business plans. Her main project is teaching and organizing the MSU Organic Farmer Training Program, which is a mix of field trips, online and on-farm learning to help people make their farm dreams a reality. In 2023, the OFTP added a new learning site at Keep Growing Detroit, so people can choose to learn in Detroit or at the MSU Student Organic Farm in East Lansing.

Katie also leads the Michigan Sustainable Farm Mentors Program and is planning Michigan’s mentorship program for the new USDA Transition to Organic Partnership Program. She works with Michigan SARE coordinator Sarah Fronczak to promote SARE grants and resources, assist SARE grant authors, map beginning farmer resources, and connect farmers of color and underserved producers with SARE. 

Katie spent 5 years as a farmworker on small-scale, organic farms before co-founding Groundswell Community Farm in West Michigan. Over a dozen years, Groundswell grew from 2 farmers tilling bare land with hand tools into a successful farm employing 10 farm workers to grow over $200,000 of vegetables annually on 7 acres. During that time, she attended Grand Valley State University, where she designed an on-farm research project about organic controls for Striped Cucumber Beetles to earn an MS in Biology. Outside of work, Katie enjoys biking, playing with her 11-year-old son and enjoying time with her partner Jill.