The Resilience Hub & Portland Maine Permaculture Message Board › Life and Death of Russell Libby

Life and Death of Russell Libby

Jim M
user 8311780
Auburn, ME
Post #: 79
A great loss. MOFGA's notice is below. I encourage you to click on the link to Russell's portrait by R. Shetterly, from his American's Who Tell the Truth collection. Read the bio there to get a deeper sense of the Russell's service to the quality of life here in Maine and globally.­

Maine Organic Farmers And Gardeners Association
MOFGA Mourns The Death Of

Russell Libby
The Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association announces, with great sadness, the death of its beloved leader Russell Libby, following a long struggle with cancer. He passed away peacefully among his family at his home this morning in Mt. Vernon, Maine. He was 56.

Russell lent his extraordinary leadership skills to MOFGA for almost 30 years. He served on the Board of Directors for a decade before becoming its long-serving Executive Director in 1995. He held that position until November 2 of this year, when he assumed the title of Senior Policy Advisor. In that role he continued to guide the organization with his characteristic wisdom, compassion and dedication, even as his health failed. Prudently, he took many steps to ensure that MOFGA’s course would remain steady in the time to come. A search for a new Executive Director is set to begin on January 1, 2013. MOFGA is currently under the guidance of Heather Spalding, who has worked closely with Russell at MOFGA since 1997.

“We are saddened beyond words by Russell’s passing, but we are grateful for the legacy he has given us,” said MOFGA Board President Barbara Damrosch. “MOFGA has always been a vibrant organization that, through educational and policy work, has advanced the cause of safe, healthful food in Maine and championed the farmers and gardeners who grow it. Russell nurtured MOFGA to the point where its membership now exceeds that of any other state organic group. New farmers look to Maine for encouragement and inspiration.”

A memorial service will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, December 15, at the Mount Vernon Elementary School. At a later date, to be determined, MOFGA will host a gathering in honor of Russell in the Exhibition Hall at the Common Ground Education in Unity.

Portrait of Russell Libby by Robert Shetterly, from his Americans Who Tell The Truth collection.­

Greg M.
user 3541854
Acton, ME
Post #: 407
Very sad to see him pass....a lot packed into those 56 years.
Lisa F.
Group Organizer
Portland, ME
Post #: 2,252
I confess that Russell's death is affecting me much more than I thought it would, even though there was a sense of it coming for a while. He was a dear friend to so many of us and I cannot imagine a world without him in the physical plane along with us. Early Sunday morning I definitely had a sense of a "disturbance in the force" for lack of a better description.

Russell's work in the world should inspire all of us to to pursue, more boldly, many of the goals set forth in our work as permaculturists, whatever piece we may have chosen. He was personally very supportive of our work and would often share links and news of interest with me for passing along to our group. He was keenly aware of the imminent storm of energy/climate/economy on how we would feed ourselves, among other things. In a world full of grey areas, he stood out clearly and solidly as one of "the good guys."

Deep sadness, but with a rising and amorphous sense of how to turn admiration for this man into tangible results in the world....
Sue M.
user 3284483
South Portland, ME
Post #: 143
I didn't know Russell personally, but his death has affected me personally. His presence in this world will certainly be missed. Perhaps his death will spur many people on to do things they might not have. Quite often that is the way of it.
Barbara R.
Oakland, ME
Post #: 69
Russell would want us all to take a 'peace' of him and plant it wisely.
james k.
user 8248185
New Port Richey, FL
Post #: 7
Russel's passing has also affected me more than I would have imagined. I didn't know him all that well. The times I met him he had an aura of kindness and wisdom and now that he is gone I regret I didn't take the opportunity to engage him when he came into my sphere.
It reminds me to treasure the people in my life and to remember we're all just passing through.
claire m.
user 11416105
Westbrook, ME
Post #: 10
I sent the link to an out of state gardening friend, and SHE was affected deeply. She said she'd be sending Russell's message far and wide.
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