Recent Work

Program Coordination (Western Region) for the Rural Food Business Assistance Project

The Rural Food Business Assistance Project provides direct farmer assistance through a partnership of the NC Rural Center and the Small Business Centers in Region A. Other project elements include identifying key infrastructure projects for NC’s western 7 counties; and gathering and telling local food success stories from 14 small rural towns and their surroundings.

Project Partners include the Southwestern Commission, NC Rural Center, North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services, the Southwestern RC&D Council, three community college Small Business Centers, various Soil and Water Conservation Districts, and numerous Federal agencies.
(Ongoing project since 2016)

Leadership for the Outdoor Gear Builders of WNC
Noah serves as the contract Program Director for the Outdoor Gear Builders of WNC, a 30+ member trade group of outdoor equipment manufacturers based in WNC and focused on growing outdoor recreation and gear manufacturing as economic drivers for the region. More info about the Outdoor Gear Builders can be found at
(Ongoing project since 2015)

Consultant for NC Biotechnology Center on Natural Products Economic Development for WNC
We are working closely with Biotech Center staff as well as regional partners to develop a strong statewide network of natural products researchers, and maximize opportunities for natural products business growth in WNC.
(Ongoing project since 2016)

Project Manager, Lead Writer for Appalachian Grown Farm Business Initiative’s Farmer Benchmarking Study
The Farmer Benchmarking Study involved leading a team of researchers and business coaches to identify and share best practices in place at Western North Carolina farms that focus on local food markets, and noting trainings and business process improvements that could help more small WNC farms succeed. Project Report  (Partnership with ASAP and Mountain BizWorks; completed December 2017)

Co-Author, Yancey County Foodshed Project Report
Co-authored a highly participatory study on what infrastructure projects and programs were needed to grow agriculture as an economic driver in Yancey County, and how to pursue those opportunities. This resulted in an in-depth report and strategy recommendations as well as process documentation that are serving as models for numerous other communities throughout WNC.
Project Report (Collaboration with Mary Snow Consulting, completed January 2017)

Co-Author, Feasibility Study and Business Plan for the McDowell County Community Food & Health Hub
Highly participatory study, focused on the feasibility of and the best ways to fund and build a community facility to streamline and scale up donated food delivery in McDowell County and its surroundings.

The proposed Hub will also provide healthy eating/active living teaching spaces, and support local farmers and business owners with shared-use infrastructure such as kitchen space and a wash/pack facility  Project Report (Collaboration with Smithson Mills Inc.; completed April 2017)