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Paul E. Dolan Foundation

Farming in the service of life.

The Paul E. Dolan Foundation was established to honor Paul, our hero, beloved friend, mentor, and leader in regenerative organic agriculture. The Foundation educates and supports farmers to adopt regenerative organic agricultural practices.

As a lifelong student of the land, Paul sought to continuously enhance his understanding of the restorative capacity of the soil and the farm, as well as its relationship to the regeneration of Earth’s healthy ecosystems. Since its founding, Paul supported the ROA’s work in educating new farmers on their journey into regenerative organic agriculture. An educator himself, Paul spoke to grower groups, shared findings at research centers, and hosted educational events at Dark Horse Ranch — all on behalf of the regenerative organic movement.

By dedicating this fund to farmer training, we are honored to help carry Paul’s legacy forward by offering dynamic programming and educational opportunities for growers seeking to farm in service of life.

“We call Dark Horse a ‘farming company’ rather than a vineyard. It is not just a site for growing grapes; rather it has a wide diversity of life forms such as chickens, horses, cows, and sheep that we have added along with the natural diversity that the native woodlands provided in the form of beneficial insects, birds, and wildlife. We work the farm in such a way as to integrate all these life energies. In this way, the vineyard is like a living organism…Most farming today is exploitive in the way we are removing nutrients from the soil every time we harvest. At Dark Horse, we farm so that we replace the nutrients with natural practices, composting, and animal grazing. In this way the vineyard rewards us with high-quality fruit year after year. This is regenerative organic agriculture.”

Paul's lessons stay with us forever.

Continue to learn from this amazing educator with Paul’s publication.  True to Our Roots sets forth the simple but powerful management principles that enabled Fetzer Vineyards under Paul Dolan to become one of America’s biggest and best-known wineries even as it was turning into a model for sustainable businesses everywhere. Today, Dolan and Fetzer are leading the California wine industry toward profound change in how wineries and grape growers preserve their environment, strengthen their communities, and enrich the lives of their employees, without sacrificing the bottom line. This is truly a management revolution in one of the most globalized, competitive industries on Earth.

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