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Julio was born in the Rio Grande Valley, a unique and agriculturally rich area in South Texas. He grew up in a family that went from working in the fields to owning their own farms. He spent much of his childhood bouncing around as an extra hand picking and packaging the fruit and vegetables that his family grew. After graduating high school, he moved to Dallas, Texas where he studied acting and video production. In 2004, he decided to leave Texas to start a new life in Oregon. After settling in he started Art House Media, a digital communications company. Unfortunately, Art House Media became a casualty of the 2008 financial crisis. After a lengthy pivot, he founded 444 Beverages. A family business, brewing and bottling a variety of ready to drink teas that were carried in several popular stores. Julio grew 444 Beverages from a single flavor into four unique beverages. At the same time, he was also experimenting with other food and beverage products based on the ingredients he was growing in his garden. It was this experience that reconnected him to his family’s history of growing food. It was then that he decided to follow in his family’s footsteps and start his own farm. In 2018 he dissolved 444 Beverages to begin the search for the right property. This eventually led him into the world of real estate, where he works today advising property owners and organizations interested in regenerative land and building practices. Julio and his family recently purchased property just outside of Portland to start their own business. In 2020 they formed Wild Stem Farm, and are now in the beginning stages of restoring the land and establishing the farm’s herb and vegetable gardens.