We’re excited to welcome Aaron New as our newest Harvest VISTA Leader! Originally from West Virginia, he relocated to Washington state in 2018 to “adventure and explore a place that has fascinated me since I was a kid.” Previously, he has served as an AmeriCorps VISTA at New River Gorge National Park, where he aided a partner non-profit with expanding their member base and growing their fundraising capacity. He was drawn to the VISTA program for a variety of reasons, namely the opportunity to give back to a place that held a lot of meaning to him. In his new role as a leader, he aims to expand upon what he’s learned so far, and to provide resources and opportunities to those doing the important work of solving issues of hunger in the United States.
Growing up in an area with low access to fresh food, he recognizes the importance of increasing the availability of healthy fare. “As I got older, the locally-owned grocery stores were slowly replaced by dollar stores that offered virtually nothing fresh, outside of milk. By my teenage years, the nearest supermarket was 20 miles away. I was fortunate that my parents were good at hiding how challenging this was, but others around me weren’t as lucky.”
In his past lives, he’s worked as a radio broadcaster, musician, photographer, actor, and paint salesman. If he’s not available, it’s more than likely he’s run off to snowboard or mountain bike.