Meet Team Torrey: Marissa Dake
Share your farm background, and how you came to work in D.C.
I come from a seven-generation Midwest farming family, though I spent much of my childhood living in northern California. Today, my parents have a small farm in northeast Kansas, which they also use to host weddings, retreats, and events.
I came to D.C. for an internship with the Senate after graduating from Washburn University. Coming from a nonprofit background, I hoped to learn more about public policy and future opportunities in advocacy work. I’m pleased to say that I still work in advocacy and I’m grateful for the opportunity to lend my voice to food and ag.
What issues are you most passionate about?
Famine in the 21st century is not a failure of resources, but a failure of distribution. Now more than ever, we have the opportunity, infrastructure, and supply well within our reach to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger around the world. Overcoming obstacles like food waste and embracing opportunities to expand global trade are both issues about which I’m passionate.
What is your favorite ag or food event around town?
The FRESHFARM market at Dupont Circle is one of my favorite regular excursions. There are so many amazing farms in the area! If the market isn’t busy, I enjoy chatting with farmers and swapping stories… mostly about our family goats or the time I got attacked by a rooster.
What’s the best place to find chicken and waffles in D.C.?
This is a tough one, but Hen Quarter takes the lead with their killer bourbon maple syrup. The Rock and Roll Hotel (which, in fact, is not a hotel) comes in close second. Please send any chicken and waffle tips and recommendations my way – they’re always welcome!
What is the most interesting trip you’ve been on?
I’ve been fortunate to travel through much of Central America and the Caribbean, but Cuba tops the list. I visited Havana and Santa Clara in early 2017 to study U.S.-Cuba relations and different aspects of Cuban history and society. It was an eye-opening experience that continues to impact me.