As I sat here today with nothing to do,I was just thinking back to my beginning with Grow Appalachia. I started out with nothing but some memories of my past years as a youth in the garden that I hated. I got a phone call from William Turner who at that time was a professor at Berea College. He knew I had tried to start a garden that summer for the youth of the London District Association,But didn’t have much luck for lack of funds.He told me about a (as he put it) swell guy who had money to do gardens in the mountains. At that point he put me in touch with David Cooke. He is not just a swell guy but a great leader and gardener. He has led me though some times when I thought I couldn’t make it. I am a carpenter by trade and all this was new to me. David ,being who he is not boastful and would never give himself the credit for this fast growing garden program. In the beginning year he had two other job at Berea College. Grow Appalachia was his hobby in that there was no pay,but he was always there when we needed him. For me that was sometime on a Saturday. I have grown a lot over the past five years under Davids great leadership. In the beginning, there were people in London who thought this was just a one summer thing with no future.We have proved them wrong and they now see the people in the county that are impacted by the program. We have grown from a site of just home gardens and community gardens to a site with five high tunnels,growing in plastic, drip irrigation,solar electric water pump station and all our original home and community garden programs. All this at LCAAHC was made possible by having the great leadership of our director,David Cooke. He has and can be a friend, role model and leader. Thanks David for all you have done and will continue to do for me and the people of Grow Appalachia.