Odiase is one of two valedictorians at Fisk University, a historically black college in Nashville, Tennessee.
The town of Hardwick, Vermont had been struggling since the early 20th century. That’s when the town’s granite industry saw a huge fall in demand as builders moved from using granite to concrete.
But in the past decade or so, young agricultural entrepreneurs decided to turn to local food to help revive the town’s fortunes.
But as Vermont farmer and freelance journalist Ben Hewitt chronicled in his new book “The Town That Food Saved: How One Community Found Vitality In Local Food,” longtime residents including farmers and food producers were less than enthusiastic, much of the food was priced beyond their means and they felt threatened by the possible increase in land prices. “The Town That Food Saved” was released in paperback earlier this year.