By Carilyne Vance
Axum is a graduate of the University of Maryland’s College of Agronomy, (now named the College of Natural Resource Management) and worked for the United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Plant Sciences Institute for 20 years. Che Axum has taught middle school science and is also a successful farmer and sustainable farming consultant. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Harry Hughes Center for Agroecology and is a member of the American Agronomy Society/ ASA, the Crop Science Society of America and the Soil Science Society of America.
Mchezaji “Che” Axum is the Director of the CAUSES Center for Urban Agriculture. He is a trained environmental agronomist with over 25 years of experience in agriculture. He leads a team of Researchers at the Muirkirk Research Farm in Beltsville, Maryland, and oversees the University's DC Master Gardener, Specialty/Ethnic Crops and Urban Agriculture certificate programs.
A native Washingtonian, Mr. Axum is a third generation farmer. In 1918 after relocating to Washington, D.C. from Alabama, Mr. Axum's paternal great-great-grandfather started farming in the northeast section of the city. Additionally, his maternal great-grandfather was an established farmer in Mitchellville, Maryland. With generations of farming in his blood, it is no wonder that George Washington Carver is one of his personal heroes.
Along with Che, the Center for Urban Agriculture is comprised of:
- Sandy Farber Bandier, Coordinator, Master Gardener & Junior Master Gardener Program
- Yao Afantchao, Project Specialist, Specialty and Ethnic Crops
- Mary Farrah, Extension Agent, Urban Gardening and Forestry Outreach