Hope Radford, University of Montana

Hope RadfordHope Radford, a junior at the University of Montana, is a student leader and change-agent focusing on issues related to climate change, social justice, and sustainable food production. Starting her freshmen year, Hope has stood out as an Eco Rep, coordinating environmental events, processes and systems, and educational programming for the residence halls. She is the co-chair of the Food Systems Working group and is actively involved with Students for Real Food, UM Climate Action Now, the ASUM Sustainability Committee, and 1,000 New Gardens. Hope worked to create an on-campus farmers market and designed a system to help University students on meal plans use their money for purchasing healthy local foods. Additionally, Hope initiated a campus Real Foods movement, successfully encouraging the University to sign a commitment that 20% of food purchases will be Real foods by 2020. Hope is a wise, knowledgeable, determined, and humble leader. She entices people into her view for a better world and works collaboratively to make those ideas a reality. Hope’s capacity to create positive change both locally and globally is unlimited.  
-Royce Engstrom, President

The world is facing a multitude of environmental challenges: we are running out of resources, losing critical ecosystems, and experiencing vast climactic variability. I am deeply passionate about these environmental issues, as well as those of social justice; every being on this planet should have the basic resources and economic opportunity to sustain life. Toward that end, I have worked to implement a movement for Real Food at the University of Montana. I envisioned, organized, and implemented an on-campus farmers market, providing students access to healthy local produce. I have designed a system that helps students on meal plans use their money for purchasing these healthy local foods and worked with campus administration to sign on to a commitment that 20% of food purchases will be Read Foods by 2020. Success, however, is not an endpoint, but rather a springboard for greater goals. I am currently studying abroad in Argentina, working to understand the effect of climate change and economic influences on small farmers.
-Hope Radford