katherine at quiviracoalition dot org
Direct Line: 505-393-5146
Carbon Ranch Initiative Technical Planner
Katherine is a geospatial analyst with roots in dryland regenerative agriculture farm and ranch planning. She has always lived in small rural communities of the desert southwest where people hauled water. Her family’s farmstead dairy goat, poultry and bee enterprises in the Chihuahuan desert thrived on less than 10” of rainfall a year; rainfall was collected during the monsoon season with rainwater harvesting, and the harvest of dew. Participation in the HMI Beginning Texas Farm and Ranch Women’s program from 2012 to 2015 ignited a passion for shared learning and engaging in a community of practice. Katherine went to graduate school because she saw the potential of new high resolution satellite imagery for land managers. Her planning practice is directed by the producer and incorporates elements of the Holistic Management framework, traditional ecological knowledge of people in a place, natural farming and the keyline scale of permanence. Projects for others included design and implementation of co-production farming, installation of broadscale earth works and on-farm input soil programs, all in desert ecosystems. An understanding of healthy soil as our safety net has inspired Katherine’s back to basics emphasis on natural solutions to mitigate risk, along with knowing your neighbor and good old fashioned preparedness. These are the tools rural communities have at hand to face these times.
Katherine and her family moved full time from the desert to the “wet side of the mountain” on a small farmstead in the Mora Valley of Northeastern New Mexico in 2018. The Ottmers reside in an old adobe as they restore it by traditional methods. They live on 20 gallons of water per day harvested from their 600 sq. ft. barn. When not providing technical support for the planning partners of the Carbon Ranch Initiative, she enjoys soaking in the hot springs after a day of chores, cooking and eating with family and friends, practicing fly fishing (because she hasn’t caught one yet), bird watching, playing with the littles and growing and processing foods.