Sean Day, a former U.S. Navy SEAL, graduated summa cum laude from California State University, Fresno (Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences & Technology) with a B.S. in Agronomy. While traveling to over 30 countries on five continents as a sniper, point man, combat medic, and team leader spanning five combat tours, he began to understand how truly fragile our agro-ecosystem is. More, he realized how vital food security is to the health of a nation's defense and economy. Day recognized without farmers and passionate agronomists to fill the shoes of our aging agricultural community, America cannot continue to stand as a pillar of prosperity and opportunity for the world. Witnessing first-hand the results of how natural and manmade disasters can abruptly decimate a country, he made it his new mission to feed the world.
Currently Day is a graduate student at the University of Arizona (College of Agriculture and Life Sciences) with projected graduation in Spring 2021 with M.S. in Agronomy. His thesis is titled A Comparison of Soil Health and Soil Fertility Progression in Organically Grown Pecans. He has gained aptitude in agriculture and research while volunteering, interning, and working for the USDA-NRCS, U.C Davis Bohart Museum of Entomology, National Science Foundation, Federal Work Study Program (farmhand) and Fresno State Independent Undergraduate Agriculture Research Program.
Philip Smith is a soil scientist with the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service in Hanford, CA, where he works as the soil survey office leader responsible for soils information published to Web Soil Survey for California’s Central Valley and Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. Philip is originally from the state of Georgia, where he grew up on a small farm. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture (BSA) with a major in environmental soil science from the University of Georgia in 1997. From 1997 to 2002, Philip worked in private sector soil consulting in the Atlanta metropolitan area, producing high-intensity soil surveys with interpretations for land development and onsite wastewater treatment systems. Philip has been employed with USDA-NRCS since 2002, having worked in Georgia, New York, and California.
In his free time, Philip enjoys backyard gardening as well as camping, hiking, and fishing in California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains and Pacific Coast. He also enjoys sharing his knowledge of soils with others, especially high school and college students, and was delighted when Sean Day asked him to help foster the success of Neptune Spear Farms. Phil credits his parents for instilling in him an appreciation for agriculture, Earth sciences, and natural environments. Phil’s father was a U.S. Army Vietnam War veteran.
Born and raised on a raisin ranch in the Central Valley, Calliope has a deep connection to growing food and loving the land. Calliope spent several years traveling and living across the country and has set roots in Fresno, California where she manages the Horticulture Nursery at California State University, Fresno. In 2002, she received her Bachelor of Science degree in Plant Science with an emphasis in Horticulture and in 2015 received her Master of Science degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with a unique combination of Plant Science and Rehabilitation Counseling, using therapeutic horticulture techniques with young adults with disabilities. She completed a certificate training through the Horticultural Therapy Institute and will receive her Horticultural Therapist - Registered professional registration in 2020. Calliope also utilizes horticultural therapy practice as a program manager with Insight Garden Program inside Avenal State Prison, teaching those currently incarcerated to nurture themselves as they would a garden.
Calliope has a life goal of connecting people to nature, in growing food, tending the earth and loving the soil. Neptune Spear Farms is the epitome of this belief system, practicing the healing and purposeful work of growing fresh produce to feed local communities. In rare free time, Calliope loves to share the natural world with her daughter, visiting the ocean and playing in the forest