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Ron Finley        

Grower of a Nourishing Food Culture in South Central L.A.’s Food Desert

Ron Finley is a man who will not sit still and watch a problem take root. Having grown up in the South Los Angeles food desert, Ron is familiar with the area’s lack of fresh produce. He knew what it’s like to drive 45 minutes just to get a fresh tomato.In 2010, he set out to fix the problem. Outside his front door, that is. Ron planted vegetables in the curbside dirt strip next to his home. And quietly, carefully, tenderly started a revolution.

“I wanted a carrot without toxic ingredients I didn’t know how to spell,” says Ron.

His was an exceptionally creative, cost-effective and simple solution; however, it was also an act of spirited rebellion that led to a run-in with the authorities. The City of Los Angeles owns the “parkways,” the neglected dirt areas next to roads where Ron was planting. He was cited for gardening without a permit. This slap on the wrist did little to dissuade his green thumb. So Ron fought back. Hard. He started a petition with fellow green activists, demanding the right to garden and grow food in his neighborhood – and then, the city backed off. This caught the eyes of creative leaders and media voices that lauded his courageous act of ebullient defiance. Ron has continued to share his story and vision with the world, giving a TED talk and planning many exciting ways to continue his involvement in mitigating Los Angeles food deserts.

His dreams have been reshaped into a thriving garden of pumpkins, peppers, sunflowers, kale and corn. But more than being a guerilla gardener, Ron is a community leader. Determined to change South Los Angeles from food desert to food forest, he wants his actions to be educational, inspiring, and nutritious. He wants kids to grow up with the option of healthy food, instead of fried, fattening staples. He wants to sweep up and transform his street, his hood, the city of LA and communities everywhere.

Speech Topics


people schools countries education work america folk united state


energy system change fuel audience grain cheap health care


Global Earth Day Gratitude Celebration April 22, 2016 Give Thanks ...
Known as the Gangsta Gardener, Ron Finley is one of LA's most widely known ... Founder of the Ron Finley Project, his mission is to transform the culture in ...
Da FUNction Event to Celebrate the Urban Gardening Movement ...
Da FUNction is the brainchild of renowned urban gardener Ron Finley, one of LA's most widely known artivists and a forerunner in the healthy food movement.
Guerrilla Gardener and TED Sensation Ron Finley Discusses ...
Ron Finley has been called a renegade gardener, a gangster gardener and an eco-lutionary. His TED talk about turning South Central L.A,'s vacant lots into ...
Ron Finley, "Gangster Gardener" Delivers TED Lecture On ...
Ron Finley is a successful clothing designer and artist from Los Angeles whose life got a little dirtier when he realized something strange about his ...
Urban Gardening - An Appleseed With Attitude -
Ron Finley was home by the pool recently when his thoughts once again turned to dirt. “People need to realize how powerful the transformation of soil can be,” ...

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