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Meredith, Yannick and Dexter Favre

Who are they?

Meredith, a North Carolina native, has dedicated her life to the world of entomology and has become a respected Extension Agent and Local Food Coordinator in Sanford, Lee County. Her journey from corporate success to community service is a testament to her unwavering commitment to making a difference in the lives of her fellow North Carolinians.

Born and raised in the heart of North Carolina, Meredith's fascination with insects and the natural world began at an early age. She was an inquisitive child, always exploring the woods and fields near her home, observing insects, and developing a deep appreciation for the diverse ecosystem that surrounded her. This early passion for entomology would shape the course of her life.

Meredith's academic journey started at the prestigious University of North Carolina (UNC), where she pursued a degree in Biology. Her dedication to her studies and her remarkable aptitude for the subject earned her a Bachelor's degree with honors. During her time at UNC, Meredith's professors and peers quickly recognized her potential, and she was encouraged to explore a career in the agricultural world.

After graduation, Meredith ventured into the biotech industry, where she worked as an entomologist. Her work rearing and studying insects as well as her innovative contributions to the industry quickly garnered attention. She was involved in projects that aimed to develop alternative pest control methods and improve agricultural practices, earning her numerous accolades and recognition within her field.

Despite her success in the corporate world, Meredith felt a growing desire to apply her expertise for the greater good of her community. She saw a way to make a more direct and meaningful impact on the lives of local farmers and residents. Inspired by this calling, she decided to pursue a Master's degree in entomology at North Carolina State University.

Meredith's master's thesis focused on the genetics of flour beetles, a critical pest in the agriculture industry. Her research was groundbreaking and contributed valuable insights that could lead to more discoveries in the field of genetics and gene editing. With her Master of Science degree in hand, Meredith was well-equipped to transition into the public sector, where her passion for educating the people around her could align with her commitment to her local community.

In her role as an Extension Agent and Local Food Coordinator in Sanford, Lee County, Meredith manages the Farmer's Market and connects local farmers with resources, opportunities, and consumers. She is a tireless advocate for sustainable farming practices, the promotion of locally grown produce, and the conservation of North Carolina's rich natural heritage.

Meredith's decision to leave the corporate world and embrace a career in public service underscores her dedication to the people and environment of North Carolina. Her journey from a bright student at UNC to a distinguished entomologist in the biotech industry and, finally, to a community-focused Extension Agent and Local Food Coordinator has made her a respected figure in Lee County. Meredith's work continues to have a profound and positive impact on the local community, supporting sustainable agriculture and fostering a deeper connection between farmers and consumers. Her unwavering commitment to her roots and her passion for entomology make her a true North Carolina treasure.


Yannick's journey from the picturesque mountains of eastern France to becoming a specialist in plant genetics and agriculture in North Carolina is a testament to his passion for farming, his scientific acumen, and his unwavering commitment to his roots.

Born and raised in the rustic beauty of the French mountains, Yannick's formative years were spent on his grandparents' dairy cow operation. Surrounded by the serene landscapes and agricultural traditions of his family, he developed a deep love for farming and a profound connection to the land.

Eager to blend his love for the land with scientific expertise, Yannick pursued a degree in Biological Engineering and Agronomy from the University of Science of Lyon. Armed with this education, he embarked on a career with Bayer Cropscience, specializing in plant genetic engineering, particularly in the realm of Soybean tissue culture and genetic transformation.

Yannick's remarkable skills and dedication quickly caught the eye of his colleagues at Bayer. After only three years, he was relocated to the United States, where his talents found fertile ground to flourish. Over the course of twelve years in the industry, Yannick's career soared, marked by numerous achievements. During this time, he also pursued a Bachelor of Science with honors in Biology from North Carolina State University (NCSU), further enhancing his scientific knowledge and expertise.

However, despite his successful career in plant genetics and biotechnology, Yannick yearned to reconnect with his farming heritage. Driven by a deep desire to return to the soil, he made the bold decision to become a full-time apprentice on a diversified vegetable and cut flower farm near Raleigh, North Carolina. This significant step allowed him to immerse himself in the practical aspects of farming, fulfilling a lifelong dream.

After two years of hands-on farming experience, Yannick transitioned back to a laboratory environment. Currently, he is employed by NCSU, where he serves as a tissue culture specialist, contributing to the Christmas Tree Genetics Program. In this role, Yannick is involved in conifer micropropagation and genetics, advancing research that benefits the Christmas tree industry and environmental conservation.

Yannick's journey, from the idyllic landscapes of France to a career as a plant genetic engineer with Bayer, to his return to the farming community in North Carolina, and his current role as a tissue culture specialist at NCSU, reflects his unwavering commitment to agriculture, science, and the preservation of farming traditions. His dedication to both the scientific and practical aspects of farming is a remarkable story of following one's heart and forging a meaningful connection between science and the land.

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