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Meet the Funga Team: J. Anthony Seliskar

Get to know the Funga crew with this newest installment of our "Meet the Team" series. Come back monthly to meet more team members, hear about their journey to Funga, and understand their vital role in our community.

Anthony on his first summit-attempt after the team offsite in Montana.

We’re big fans of the “Today I get to….” mentality. So, what do you get to do every day at Funga?

This month I transitioned from serving as Chief of Staff (aka Chief of Stuff) to Landowner Engagement Manager (aka Land Rusher/Keeper). My days are now filled with exciting conversations with industrial and private landowners, helping them discover the power of Funga's innovative technology. For new landowners, I'm their guide to the amazing world of rewilding soil and unlocking its potential. I get to share how Funga's technology promotes healthier, faster tree growth, increased tree resilience, and even survival! (Plus, our Land Partners keep all the additional biomass AND receive annual carbon payments 😉) For existing Land Partners, I'm their dedicated advocate, ensuring a top-tier experience and that Funga delivers on our promises. I also help in the field a lot, from turkey-baster inoculator to professional 5-gallon bucket hauler!

If you had to explain what Funga does to a third grader, what would you say?

Funga makes trees grow faster and healthier by restoring soil biodiversity (putting the stuff that was originally there, back!).

Tell us a little bit about your life. How did it lead you to Funga?

I’ve had quite the winding path. After two and half years of being “undeclared,” I graduated with a finance degree from The Ohio State University. I did a little bit of everything from being a TA, RA, and portfolio manager to power lifting, competing at the national level for club soccer, and starting a band. All this to say, finding a job during the pandemic proved to be a challenge. So I did as anyone who has read "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance" dreams of, and took a 40 day motorcycle tour around the country. After my travels, I moved to Austin, TX and started working a front-desk at a co-working space. This led me to connecting with Funga when the company was still just a slide deck. I was quickly thrown into the fast-paced world of startup land. After a few months of wearing many hats and learning what it takes to be a ‘full-stack start-up builder,’ we got funded and I was officially hired as our second full time employee.

Funga’s first SXSW booth ft. our old logo.

To summarize, a lot of luck, serendipity, and make-it-work attitude lead me to Funga. I’ve never known “what I wanted to do with my life,” but I am grateful for the people and the opportunities that shaped my journey. I am proud to say that being at Funga, the mission, and the people, align with my values and who I want to become.

What is your favorite part of the job?

Although I DO love our vests (and our sick merit-badges)… the people are why I am here.

Being surrounded by people who share this commitment makes every day rewarding and inspires me to keep pushing forward. The Funga-folk make it easy to do hard things.

What is one workflow/productivity tool or trick that you can’t live without?

As I am sure the team knows, I do love Notion, but my true productivity tool is a morning journal session. Brain dump on paper, clear the mental-RAM, and highlight the priorities for the day. And if that doesn’t work some combo of food, workout, sauna, cold shower usually does the trick!

What trivia round would you know every answer to?

Early 2000s modern rock bands/songs!

Can you share a favorite memory of/with the Funga team?

It’s so hard to just pick one… but I am going to say, the incident which I refer to by the multi-layered inside joke / fake band name “Dirty Spoon Man and The Dibble Brothers.” which was the team hand-planting our first 2-acre trial in Athens, GA. I loved seeing the sheer grit and determination from every member of the team. It was the epitome of ‘type 2’ fun and I will never forget it.

"Dirty Spoon Man and The Dibble Brothers"

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