Concept Formation

Who We Are

The Farm-A.C. started out of the lack of available fresh, organic produce. Kathy Cox owns an organic cafe and frequently finds herself lacking quality organic produce and found it difficult to find local organic growers able to accomodate her cafe's needs. She thought of purchasing a small plot of land and growing her own produce for the cafe.... Then God had a bigger vision.... She could use this as an opportunity to help those who have a difficult time finding employment, such as disabled veterans and cognitively impaired adults and students. Her vision kept growing while yet being overall a simple mission: to have a positive impact on the community, one life at a time. 
Kathy shared with vision with several others and a team of 5 was formed. Kathy did all of the paperwork and the Farm-A.C. is now officially a recognized 501(c)3 non-profit organization.
We are a group of 5 uniquely talented individuals. We are:
Kathy Cox - founder
A University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) gradute who studied international business practices. She then went on to Wayne State University of pursue her Master's Degree in Elementary Education with a math major.  She currently owns an organic cafe and has been operating an organic bodycare company for almost 10 years.  She was also a stay-at-home mom who was always looking for teaching opportunties for her daughter.

Shirley Sharp- treasurer
Shirley is the widow of Ron. She knows first hand the lack of community resources for not only disabled veterans, but for all veterans.  She has a special place in her heart for the underserved and wants to give back in honor of her late husband. Shirley has over 20 years experience working in an office setting and has the know how of keeping good financial records.

Julie Singer- secretary
Julie has a prominant position in an advertising firm where she utilitizes her ability to organize and direct teams. She is confindent in her skill set and is a strong leader. She has a passion for people and animals and is innovative in her thinking.

Stacey Rymut- board member
Stacey grew up being bullied because of her disability, but never let it hold her back in life. She was diagnosed at Shriner's Hospital with cerebral palsy. She knows first hand how frustrating it can be when you feel like an outcast and feel as if you don't belong or fit in anywhere.  She will ensure that we create a very welcoming enviroment for all people.

Bill Susick- board member
Bill is an army veteran who understands some of the difficulties that veterans are faced with. He is also currently disabled and understands the frustrations of individuals who want to be contributing members of society but for health reasons simply can't. He will help create opportunities for people of varying abilities to help at the farm. He will be in charge of the volunteers and directing them to specific tasks.


The Name

As Kathy was envisioning this farm community center, she got the idea for the name: R.O.N.S. Farm-A.C. Center, Inc.  R.O.N.S. would stand for Reaching Our Neighbors Spiritually as the vision of the farm is to not just give a hand out, but to give a hand up by truly reaching people from the inside. To bring to light the unique abilities that each individual possess, to truly let their internal light shine. And Farm-A.C. Center stands for Farm And Community Center pronounced /fahr-muh-see/ (like pharmacy) with the idea being that we want to bring life to people through the goodness of what has been provided naturally for us, the fruit of the ground.
Not only do we want to reach people, but Ron was also Kathy's father. He was a Vietnam Veteran, a devoted husband, a hard-worker, a tough father, a big-hearted friend, and a very proud American. But he was also an alcoholic. When he returned from Vietnam, he turned to alcohol as a coping mechanism. He found community at the bar drinking with people whom he could relate to. This comfort is what eventually killed him. Kathy wants to use the Farm-A.C. to prevent other families from experiencing the loss that she did by creating a sense of community where veterans can come and enjoy the companionship of people who support them and let them use the farm for its therapeutic properties.