Stella married John Balakian in 1957 and they had two daughters, Ginger Balakian and Kathy Balakian. Her granddaughter is Amber Balakian. The recipe for the Organic Blended Heirloom Tomatoes was passed down from her mother who came to the United States as an immigrant during the Armenian Genocide. Stella was born in Watertown, Massachusetts and moved to California when she was 16. Today, at 86 years old, Stella continues to do everything from packing, cooking and managing the farm.
Ginger is the daughter of Stella and John Balakian, wife of Clarence Robinson, sister of Kathy Balakian and mother of Amber Balakian. She grew up on the farm, and worked managing, picking, packing, delivering and selling at farmer's markets. She has worked for 30 years at the US Post Office, and continues to do so today. She is the reason that Balakian Farms transitioned to organic and began growing unique fruit and vegetable varieties in the 90's. This was very much ahead of its time, and this mindset remains very much the same today.
Clarence is the son of Clyde and Mattie Robinson, husband of Ginger Balakian, and father of Amber Balakian. He has a sister, VonDosta Fuller, and a brother, Clyde Robinson. He grew up in Fresno and was very active in football, basketball and boxing at Edison High School and Reedley College. Clarence manages and works at the farmer's markets in San Francisco. He also is a bus driver for KCUSD. He's always one to make you laugh!
Amber is the granddaughter of John and Stella Balakian & Clyde and Mattie Robinson. She is the daughter of Ginger and Clarence Robinson. She grew up on the farm and frequented farmer's markets in San Fransisco with her grandparents and parents. She graduated from UCSD with a Bachelors of Arts in Economics and Harvard University with a Masters in Business Management. She is the fourth generation farmer, and creator of the Organic Blended Heirloom Tomatoes. When Amber is not farming, she teaches entrepreneurship at Fresno City College. She is developing new food products for the farm, including Choreg (Armenian Sweet Bread) and an Heirloom Tomato Bloody Mary Mix . In the future, she wants to expand Balakian Farms into the beauty industry and create a line of beauty products with fresh fruits and veggies. For fun she likes to travel, go to the beach, watch movies with friends and spend time with family.
Angel is the manager at Balakian Farms and has been with the farm for over 20 years. He works alongside his brother, Benny Chavez. He has two daughters, Jessie and Mariana. Angel monitors from seed to market and everything in between. You can find him overseeing all farming operations, including growing, greenhouse management and logistics. Angel is dedicated, consistent and a hard worker who is always positive.
Benny is married to Rosa, and he has two children. He works alongside his brother, Angel Chavez. Benny has been with Balakian Farms for 20 years, and is involved in everything from management to growing and farmers markets. Benny's knowledge and creativity has lead to new systems for the Farm that have improved efficiency.