Eva Coifman Sommaripa ’63 Receives Alumnae Achievement Award
Eva Coifman Sommaripa ’63 Receives Alumnae Achievement Award at Feb 27 Campus Gala
The Wellesley College Alumnae Association Board of Directors and the Alumnae Achievement Award Committee will present Eva Coifman Sommaripa ‘63 one of two Alumnae Achievement Awards to be conferrred in 2014. Eva’s award is for her work as an organic farmer and champion of sustainable living. The award celebration takes place Thursday, February 27, 2014, at 5:30 pm, and includes a ceremony in Alumnae Hall and reception afterwards in the ballroom.
Eva joins C. Tracy Orleans of the class of 1970, a behavioral scientist and public health advocate, who is the other 2014 winner of an Alumnae Achievement Award. This award is the highest honor given to alumnae for excellence and distinction in their fields of endeavor. It has been presented annually since 1970.
During Eva’s nearly four decades of work as a Certified Organic Grower, she has identified, cultivated, and marketed fresh culinary herbs, cut flower bouquets, edible flowers, and specialty greens which are both specially tasty and nutritious. Her work is based at Eva’s Garden, her South Dartmouth, Massachusets small farm, well located to serve the many Boston area and a steadily growing number of New York restaurants she supplies. Although early in her work. Eva found the markets for organic ingredients narrow, the demand for a broad range of high quality and exotic produce has burgeoned during the past two decades.
Recently Eva’s garden, her farming methods and her rigorous emphasis on sustainable living provided the inspiration for Boston food writer and chef Didi Emmons’ book, Wild Flavors where she described a year spent with Eva on the farm - “a botanical version of the Louvre” - learning how to barter and forage for food, and live a simple, self-sufficient life, as well as working with Eva on transforming forty-six plants into 150 recipes. Eva and Didi’s creations use such herbs as chervil and tarragon, weeds (goosefoot and chickweed) and rich greens like dinosaur kale and baby mustard, all easy to grow and increasingly popular in farmer’s markets. Eva works to find ingredients with critical micro-nutrients that leafy greens provide so much more richly than do corn-fed livestock.
Between her Wellesley graduation and the beginning of her farming career, Eva earned a B.F.A. degree in ceramics at Rhode Island School of Design. Her husband George died in 2001. She has two sons, Leo and Niko, and two grandchildren.
The other 1963 classmates who have won the Alumnae Achievement Award are Terry Grodzicker (1985), Lynn Sherr (1988), Claudine Malone (1991), Diana Hadden Gale (1993), Helen Lefkowitz Horowitz (1996), Olivia Hood Parker (1996), and Susan McGee Bailey (2012).
Congratulations, Eva! 1-9-6-3 Wellesley, Rah!