West Side Farmers Market Leadership

West Side Farmers Market is a 501c3 non-profit governed by a volunteer board and run by an executive director.

Meet the Executive Director

Molly Phipps – Executive Director
Molly Phipps is the Executive Director of the West Side Farmers Market and has been integrally involved with the market since 2013. She has a Bachelor’s in Geology-biology from Brown University and a PhD in Science Education and Oceanography from Oregon State University. Molly has been a climate scientist, a teacher, a mentor, an educational researcher and evaluator, and an environmental educator in a search for the best way to create a positive impact on the environment and community well-being. Building and strengthening the West Side Farmers Market represents an intersection of a number of Molly’s interests: food, climate change education, and community. As we move away from a fossil fuel-dependent food system we need to drastically change our ways of feeding ourselves and taking care of each other at the local level. By nurturing and supporting small-scale farms and farmers, teaching people the joys and benefits of eating local food, and encouraging a more interconnected and self-reliant community, Molly has found her way to make a meaningful impact on climate mitigation and adaptation. Molly is currently President of the Board of Directors of the Mississippi Market Natural Food Co-op.

Interested in joining the board?

Board applications are open now! First time board members serve one-year terms, while subsequent terms are for three years.
You can access the application here.

Please contact us with any questions about being on the board or getting involved at

board (at) westsidefarmersmarket.net

Meet the Current Board

Mackenzie Dolo-Tolstoy  President (2021-2023)
Dr. Dolo-Tolstoy brings a wealth and depth of experience to psychology and the international fields of education and training, program development with multiple technology platforms, and conflict transformation. She mentors, coaches, and provides support to learners in the areas of humanities, psychology, sociology, philosophy, and communications.
She has taught and initiated education and counseling programs around the world in Indonesia, China, Cambodia, Kuwait, Oman, Switzerland, and Mali (where she was raised and has dual citizenship).
Mackenzie has transitioned from academic teaching to working in training and organization management still focusing on well-being and creative solutions. She can empower clients with the ability to take nebulous dreams and channel their energy into being able to forge practical solutions that assist with their life goals.
When Mackenzie is not teaching or traveling, she enjoys gaming and researching community building and the visceral impact of virtual environments, user-centered design, hope and wellbeing model of development, transition adjustment and conflict transformation. 

Laura Gosewisch – Vice-President/Treasurer (2019-2022)
Laura has been a vendor with the West Side Farmer’s Market since 2016 when she and her wife Cathy started the Vital Ground Farm Network – a collaborative for farmers and entrepreneurs that cultivates relationships between makers, consumers, and local food. When she’s not farming, she is running her massage therapy practice or speaking at conferences for women, farmers and entrepreneurs. 

Matthias Peterson-Brandt Secretary (2021)
Matthias moved with his family to Minnesota in the summer of 2019, landing in the West Side. Right away the WSFM became a regular staple of Saturday mornings. The WSFM’s sense of community, support for local agriculture, delicious fresh foods, celebration of arts and music, and concern for addressing climate change all connect with his own passions. Now he is excited to support the market on the board. Matthias brings skills in volunteer management, fundraising, grant-writing, and community building. He is delighted to serve as pastor at Cherokee Park United Church on the West Side. Among his pastimes and interests are ultimate frisbee, gaming, reading, and endless imaginative games with his two children.

Laurie Sovell (2021-2023)
Laurie grew up in that other Twin City and became a West Sider, along with her two kids and husband, 17 years ago. She loves the river and works to connect people all over Minnesota with our waters by helping them track river health. She has a particular interest in the connections between food systems, watersheds, and people and can’t wait to dive into the work of the WSFM!

Jessie Topp (2021)

bio coming soon