Associate Professor in the Department of Crop & Soil Science; Associate Director of OSU’s Center for Small Farms & Community Food Systems; Community Food Systems Specialist for OSU Extension

Lauren Gwin is an associate professor in Oregon State University’s crop and soil sciences department, the associate director of OSU’s center for small farms and community food systems and the statewide community food systems specialist for OSU Extension. The mission of the Center is to advance sustainable agriculture, resilient and equitable community food systems, and the long-term viability of Oregon's small-scale farmers and ranchers. The Center’s nationally recognized programs include the Small Farms Extension Program, Organic Extension Program, Niche Meat Processor Assistance Network, and a family of other initiatives focused on food system transformation.

Dr. Gwin’s extension, outreach, and applied research focus on public policy and regulations, small-scale processing, value chains, and food hubs within local and regional food systems; small farm viability; and sustainable, equitable, community-based food system development. Engaged scholarship is core to her work: she collaborates with community-based, statewide, and national organizations.  She was a founding member and serves on the Leadership Committee of the Oregon Community Food Systems Network (OCFSN); she also coordinates OCFSN’s Policy Committee and the Oregon Food Hub Network.

Dr. Gwin is committed to putting OSU’s values for diversity, equity, and inclusion into practice. She serves on the College of Agricultural Sciences’ Climate, Diversity, and Inclusion task force; leads her department’s DEI Committee; and is an active participant in OSU Extension Diversity Champions. In recent years, she has collaborated with Black and Latinx farmers and food justice leaders in Oregon to support events and initiatives they lead, including the Back to the Root conference, the Viviane Barnett BIPOC Food System Leaders fellowship, and the Regional, Equitable Food Economy project in Portland Metro. She is also a co-founder of the Letitia Carson Legacy Project, a partnership with Oregon Black Pioneers, Black Oregon Land Trust, and the Linn-Benton Chapter of the NAACP.

Dr. Gwin lives in Corvallis with her family: two daughters, aged 11 and 13, and her spouse, Clint Epps, a Professor in the department of fisheries and wildlife. She received her doctorate in environmental science, policy and management from the University of California, Berkeley.