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Route 1 is strategically designed to be a hub of resources for BIPOC emerging farmers in Minnesota. From agribanking to equipment, land acquisition to farm share distribution, Route 1 is strategically focused on meeting Minnesota’s emerging farmers where they are on their journey. Ultimately, our goal is to help our clients navigate the path towards a profitable farming enterprise while simultaneously reducing the racial hunger divide in our state. Together, we can increase food access within communities of color in Minnesota.




Marcus’ passion for farming, nature preservation and the cultivation of emerging farmers comes from a deep seeded love for the earth and his foundational roots. These family roots were passed down from the Carpenter Family Farm, a 180-acre family farm located in Poinsett County, Arkansas. After a successful career as a fullback for the Wisconsin Badgers, Marcus sharpened his craft for creating strategic business solutions for his clients in the vibrant Minneapolis market. Marcus is a values-focused leader and a Masters of NonProfit Administration candidate. His achievements include leading top sales organizations and implementing strategic development strategies for companies including Philip Morris USA, The National Basketball Association, CA Technologies, Jostens and

Rewriting the Code, a tech non-profit focused on supporting Women in Tech. Marcus holds a B.S. with a triple major in Sociology, Behavioral Sciences and Law, Criminal Justice from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. As the great-grandson of one of Poinsett County’s first black, multi-acre landowners, Marcus believes that by empowering, encouraging, and supporting the next generation of

emerging farmers, America can continue to preserve and promote the legacy farming values of hard work, perseverance, patience, and integrity.

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                                                               Mary Carter


                           Vice President, Technology


Mary Carter brings a plethora of experience to the vision and mission of Route 1 and will ensure that the organization is on the forefront of technology innovation as it relates to regenerative techniques in agriculture. She is a highly experienced technology leader who excels in simplifying complex technical concepts for all partners across the ecosystem.  Whether it be translating technical concepts and roadmaps for internal partners , guiding external partners through the onboarding of new tech platforms, or helping to enable technology consultants to service their clients more effectively, Mary is equipped to lead the way.  With over a decade of experience in Silicon Valley, her career has made her a solutions engineering leader through roles such as Pre Sales Engineer, Solutions Architecture, and global tech management. In her most recent position as the Global Solutions Engineering Manager at GoCardless, a global leader in bank payments serving 75,000+ businesses worldwide, Mary has successfully led software implementations for a wide range of clients, from Fortune 500 companies to emerging startups to improve their internal processes and increase productivity. Beyond her professional achievements, Mary actively advocates for the customer's voice, playing a pivotal role in new product feature launches and resolving technical issues. Mary serves on the advisory board for the North American Association for Sales Engineers (NAASE), and actively contributes to industry advancement through mentorship, webinars, and conferences in Northern California.

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Vitalis Tita

               Vice  President  
Strategy and Farm Operations

Vitalis Tita is a passionate farmer, entrepreneur, and community advocate hailing from a farming background in Africa. He currently serves at the VP, Strategy and Farm Operations for Route 1. Alongside his wife, he also co-owns Better Greens LLC, an innovative agricultural venture, focused on providing sustainable and healthy produce for local communities. Growing up on a farm in Africa, Vitalis developed a deep love and understanding of agriculture, which has become an integral part of his life's work. He later earned a Master's degree in Business Management, equipping him with valuable skills to merge his passion for farming with his entrepreneurial spirit. With 15 years of experience in both corporate and non-profit sectors, Vitalis has honed his expertise in business development and management. He has founded multiple successful ventures, including Trust Remittance, which helps diasporans to pay for goods and services for their loved ones with ease and trust, and J.T Consulting, which provides essential services and support for small businesses and startups. Vitalis' dedication to community and personal growth is evident through his podcast, Rethink Mindset. In each episode, he explores thought-provoking ideas and strategies to help individuals and communities reach their full potential. By sharing his wealth of knowledge, experience, and insights, Vitalis seeks to inspire positive change and growth in those around him. Through his various ventures and community initiatives, Vitalis Tita continues to make a significant impact on the world of agriculture, business, and personal development, embodying the true spirit of a visionary leader.

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