see work samples below.
Producing a Shared Vision
State and National Reports
BACKGROUND: The national nonprofit Solutions from the Land (SfL) and its state-based Network members have a mission: to bring producers, business supply chain, and technical experts from across the fields of agriculture, conservation, public health, and public policy around one table.
PROBLEM: How can stakeholders with such different agendas and viewpoints coordinate their varying ideas into one single, coherent vision of how agriculture should help the world?
SOLUTION: Between 2018 and 2021, Overset provided logistics, creative, narrative and production support for the release of multiple vision reports, including SfL’s international Renaissance Report and the Ohio Smart Agriculture Call to Action.
Example #1: A 21st Century Agricultural Renaissance
Cara’s outstanding work skills and dedication to our 21st Century Agriculture Renaissance project helped to shape and package the final report. Her professionalism and talent for bringing together the voices of our collaborative partners was significant and valuable. I look forward to future opportunities and innovative projects with her.
Example #2: Ohio Agriculture’s Call to Action
If your company or organization is looking for a way to organize your people and perspectives, then Cara Urban is the one who can bring some sense of taking many individual ideas and finding the best way to align them in order of importance to achieve real accomplishments, instead of going in ten different directions and never ending up with consensus to move forward with purpose and focus. She is the best!
Research, Writing, and Synthesis
BACKGROUND: Over the last several years, the national and international communities awoke to the need for farmer-led policy to adapt to and mitigate the impacts of climate change. During COP 23 in 2017, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) introduced its seminal Koronivia Joint Work on Agriculture (KJWA) program, while both the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis and Senate Democrats’ Special Committee on the Climate Crisis in the U.S. Congress have made their own calls for policy recommendations from farmers, foresters, ranchers, and other agricultural producers.
PROBLEM: Without Observer status, the North America Climate Smart Agriculture Alliance (NACSAA) had no standing to submit comments to the United Nations Conference of Parties. Creating recommendations for either a UN or Congressional audience meant NACSAA’s Policy Work Group had to gather technical documentation, work with writers and subject matter experts, and validate the results with NACSAA’s 70+ membership.
SOLUTION: As then-staff for NACSAA member The 25x’25 Alliance and secretariat Solutions from the Land, between 2018 and 2020 Overset’s founder submitted an Observer application and teamed up with the Policy Work Group’s Chair to lead 3 stakeholder meetings, survey members on policy positions, and curate and synthesize the results to reflect a single, cohesive farmer voice. Overset served as final editor for all recommendations and first author on “Food Security and Socio-Economic Dimensions.”
Example #1: KJWA Program Recommendations for the United Nations
There is more to what Overset can do for you than what you see in a succinctly written report, attractive visuals and figures and compelling text. Underlying effective reports and engaging websites are team convening, careful listening, effective information gathering strategies, and management to develop the messages and meanings you want to convey and ensure they reflect your project objectives and motivate action.
Cara was very effective in working with SfL farmer leaders and agricultural scientists as we developed our farmer focused policy platform and recommendations on climate change for the Koronivia Joint Work on Agriculture to submit to UNFCCC. Managing this process required meticulous background reading, research and documentation, and team building to ensure key issues and concepts were discussed, vetted, and prioritized to select recommendations that represent the diverse views of the SfL membership and current science as known and understood. Cara invests time upfront to help her clients develop their storyline and message, and continually creates multiple feedback loops between the client and Overset to create a unified cohesive voice. Her attention to detail was critical in moving our recommendations and reports from ideas and concepts to draft documents for team review to creating a final product that met our needs. Thank you, Cara.
Example #2: Recommendations to the US Congress
I’ve had the opportunity to work with Cara on several projects. One in particular, as I chaired the NACSAA Enabling Policy Team. Cara listened, documented, and distilled the thoughts from a series of meetings with a very diverse group of U.S. Agricultural leaders. The resulting document, with agreement on 10 climate policy recommendations, was shared with the U.S. House Select Committee on Climate and the Senate Environment and Public Works committee. These recommendations have been widely shared and copied by other organizations. “Imitation is the highest form of flattery.”
I highly recommend Cara!
Developing Stories Online
Project Management and Design
BACKGROUND: As an organization that “puts farmers at the forefront of global challenges,” Solutions from the Land (SfL) has been dedicated for over a decade to elevating the voices of farmers as authoritative agents of change ready to tackle sustainable development, climate and other arenas.
PROBLEM: Despite SfL’s growing international profile, their website’s last major update had been in 2013. Growing issues with security, lack of institutional knowledge, and cumbersome workarounds for legacy content systems wasted hours of staff time each week. The 20+ Board members and farmer advisors consulted on online marketing remained unable to effectively share content, advise on visual changes, or better showcase farmer perspectives.
SOLUTION: Overset’s founder took the role of project manager from RFP to final wrap-up on a complete redesign process that not only consolidated SfL’s widely distributed web presence into one network, but designed, piloted, and released a new farmer communications campaign, “Stories from the Land.”
Example #1: Website Redesign Project
We worked with Cara on a big, year-long project. Cara did an amazing job at keeping massive amounts of data organized, understanding all the complex systems at play, keeping the staff and stakeholders focused and building consensus among them. No small feat. She is very talented and would be an asset on any project.
Example #2: Stories from the Land
I have had the pleasure of working with Cara on numerous projects and have found her guidance, oversight and assistance invaluable. She’s precise and conveys complex topics clearly. She brings a lot of energy to her projects and will dependably pursue any task with commitment and diligence. I hope the occasion arises where I can work with her again.
Healthcare Provider Referrals
medical subspecialties represented
Overset’s subject matter expertise doesn’t end at one field: over seven years of medical research brings a unique perspective on the relationship between systems and human health. Referral specialists process case notes, review medical literature, and consider factors such as geography, insurance requirements, and specific expertise to identify the best providers to help each patient.
"I cannot express enough how much better Cara's system is to what I was working with before. She's incredible."
Director, Recurrent Productions