Featured Employee- Katie Ralls

Katie Ralls is the Relationship Manager for Mecca Grade Estate Malt and also January's Featured Employee. Take a few minutes to get to know Katie and of course, if you would like to know more or just want to say hi, feel free to reach out at: katie@meccagrade.com

Name/Nickname: Katie Michelle Ralls

Age: 32

Quick Background: I grew up on our family’s farm, with my brother Seth, where we lived in the same house until we went to college. While growing up my dad (Brad) taught me that there weren’t “boy jobs” or “girl jobs,” so when I was older I spent my summers driving tractors and trying not to break things or ruin harvest. Once I graduated from high school, I took part of a year off from college and served as the Oregon FFA State Secretary. 

In March 2006, I started college at Oregon State University where I double majored in interior design and housing studies. Unfortunately, when I graduated in June 2010, it was at the height of the recession and also the housing crash so design jobs were pretty nonexistent. I was lucky enough to land a job working for the Central Oregon Regional Housing Authority, where I served as a Housing Specialist managing my own caseload and helping people find affordable housing. 

At the beginning of January 2011, I was setup on an awkward blind date that eventually lead me to marrying my husband Travis. When we got married in May 2012 I stopped working at the housing authority and began my new job at the Central Oregon Agricultural Research Center as their Education Coordinator. There I worked with schools and after school programs focusing on gardens and agricultural literacy. I also worked with local farmers on continuing education and events and the Jefferson County 4-H program. 

When we had our daughter in December 2017 I decided I wanted to be able to be home with her. Once I wrapped up some things with my job after maternity leave, I put in my notice and then shortly started working for Mecca Grade Estate Malt. 

Job Description: As the Relationship Manager for Mecca Grade Estate Malt, I am in charge of managing our social media accounts and the Malt Eagle Newsletter. I am also in charge of organizing events for the malt house and farm and helping educate the general public on agriculture, barley, malting and everything in between!

Favorite Thing About Mecca Grade or the Farm:  I never get tired of looking out our living room or kitchen window and seeing an unblocked view of the Cascade Mountain Range, we really are so lucky to live where we do. I love being able to work with and see my family on a daily business and help the farm, malt house and all of the other endeavors tied to it grow and succeed. Being able to raise my own family on the farm and have some of the same experiences I did growing up is pretty special as well. 

Freetime Hobbies: Baking, cooking, anything/everything creative and crafty, running my own business Katie Michelle Designs, spending time with my family and friends.  

Favorite Beer or Spirit: I am not sure if this is safe to say here or not but I am actually not a big beer drinker. I have tried SO HARD over the years to like it but it just hasn’t happened for me. I love a good glass of red wine or a vodka soda with a twist of lime and fresh mint. 

What Would be Your Last Supper Meal? This is pretty easy and specific… Prime rib with au jus and horsradish, a loaded baked potato, grilled vegetables, an extensive salad bar, dark chocolate cake with vanilla buttercream, red wine and a glass of Opal Springs water. Homemade macaroni and cheese might also be in there.