Elly Brown, Director, San Diego Food System Alliance

Elly Brown is the Director of the San Diego Food System Alliance, a multi-sector coalition focused on creating a better food environment in San Diego County. Their work involves supporting local farmers, fishermen, and urban agriculture efforts as well as addressing healthy food access and food waste issues in the County. She has been leading the coalition since January 2015. Elly began her career in financial services and business consulting in Tokyo. She discovered her passion for social and environmental impact during her MBA where she focused on social entrepreneurship. She continued her work on social impact by joining Root Cause, a Boston-based nonprofit strategic consulting firm, in 2010, advising nonprofits and foundations on building organizational capacity and maximizing community impact through collaborations.

Elly received a Bachelors in Cognitive Science from UC Berkeley and an MBA from Duke University. Elly was a staff blogger for Nextbillion, covering topics on sustainable development and social innovation. She was a judge at Harvard’s Pitch for Change social enterprise competition, serving as a mentor for the winning teams. She has experiences as a strategic consultant for social impact organizations in US, Japan, India, Uganda, and Bermuda

Kimberly Castillo, Food Procurement Coordinator, San Diego Food Bank

Kimberly Castillo is the Food Procurement Coordinator for the San Diego Food Bank, working as the primary point person for all food donations to the food bank, including food drives and corporate food donations. She also oversees the Food Rescue program, working as a liaison between retail stores throughout the county and the Food Bank’s agencies.

An alumna of the University of California, San Diego, Kimberly earned her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Studies. Directly after her studies, Kimberly joined AmeriCorps as a means of serving San Diego's vulnerable populations. After having served a year in working with the local refugee population, Kimberly transitioned to a job that could still help the City Heights region but from more of a food security standpoint. In her free time Kimberly enjoys boxing, cooking, and exploring San Diego’s wonderful eateries and drinkeries.

Tracy Delaney, Ph.D., R.D., Founding Director, Public Health Alliance of Southern California

Tracy Delaney, Ph.D., R.D. is founding director of the Public Health Alliance of Southern California - a regional coalition of nine local health departments whose members have statutory responsibility for the health of 60% of California’s population. Her work advances population health and equity through multi- sector initiatives addressing policy, systems and environmental change.  She has spearheaded multidisciplinary projects integrating land use and transportation, food systems, climate and water resources and community equity indicators.  During her tenure at the County of San Diego, she was Principal Investigator for Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) Communities Putting Prevention to Work grant, the nation’s largest federal obesity prevention award, and the CDC’s Community Transformation Grant.  She holds a doctorate in Nutrition from University of California, Davis, and is a registered dietician and a certified Health Fitness Director with the American College of Sports Medicine.  Dr. Delaney was honored with the 2014 Leadership Award by the Southern California Public Health Association.  She has a voluntary Clinical Professor faculty appointment with the University of California Department of Family Medicine and Public Health.

Nita Kurmins Gilson, Founding Director, ProduceGood

Nita Kurmins Gilson is a Founding Director at ProduceGood, a non-profit organization whose mission is to reduce waste and hunger by harvesting the extra bounty of San Diego county and delivering to those in need. Since starting a grassroots gleaning program, CropSwap, in 2009, to incorporating with partners Jerilyn and Alexandra White in 2014 to create ProduceGood, Nita has been promoting awareness of gleaning at both local and international events. She is presently Programs Director, overseeing four of ProduceGood’s food recovery programs: CropSwap (residential gleaning), Market Share (Farmer’s Market food recovery), Bumper Crop (small farm gleaning) and First Pick (corporate gleaning events).

Alan Kennedy, Food Services Director, San Diego Rescue Mission

I was Born 1964 in Glasgow Scotland, Grew up in Baltimore Maryland in 1973, I later went to college at the American Culinary Institute, where I studied Hotel and Restaurant Management and Culinary Arts.

My career has taken me on many journeys in the Culinary Field, some in which I am proud of, I have worked for the San Diego symphony, Solar Turbines Corporate Yacht, Intuit Corporation, some of the most exclusive Country Clubs in the world.

My heart has always been the genuine satisfaction of cooking / Cheffing for people; I later started A Culinary program and cooking Camps for kids at a private Christian school, K-college.

In January 2006 I went on to start an outreach to the homeless ,confused, and throw away kids in the Downtown area of San Diegocalled “The Fir Coat coffee House “

In December 2010 I started a new Business called Alan Kennedy Catering, where I took my Gifts and Talents and became an entrepreneur; In December 2015 I also created another business and hobby called Alpine Coffee Roasters where I am the Head Roaster and source coffee beans from all over the world. I was Catering Director for Intuit corporation in 2011

I am now Director of Food Services at the San Diego Rescue Mission, where I “GET TO” feed and serve thousands of Men, Women and most importantly children a nutritious Meal.

·       Serve Safe Certified Manager

·       FEMA Certified {Emergency Management /Critical Incident stress Management }

·       First Aid & Adult CPR Certification

·       Emergency Disaster Task Force -County of San Diego

My favorite saying in life and motto has been this;

“You have achieved success; when you have lived well, laughed often and LOVED much”

You’re Friend, Alan Kennedy

André Nantkes, Chief Operating Officer, A.B. Jones& Co

André Nantkes has over 18 years of experience working with Southern California organizations, coordinating and analyzing their short-to-long term business plans, helping them to accurately project their economic and environmental impact plans. André has been directly responsible for successful capital campaigns for influential community institutions such as hospitals and rescue missions. André has an MBA from Pepperdine University and a Certificate in Dispute Resolution from the Straus Institute at Pepperdine School of Law.

Lorenzo Macaluso, Director of Client Services, Center for EcoTechnology

Lorenzo Macaluso, Director of Client Services, has worked at the Center for EcoTechnology  since 2000, and works with government, foundation and industry partners to develop successful solutions that provide technical assistance, training and outreach to businesses and homeowners to help them reduce waste, save energy, and improve environmental performance. Lorenzo is a national expert on business waste reduction systems and has helped develop a variety of award-winning services that provide waste diversion and energy information and technical assistance throughout the Northeast, and consulted with many others nationally.  He serves on the MassDEP Organics Subcommittee and has presented at numerous state and national conferences as a waste reduction infrastructure development expert. He designed and implemented a variety of energy efficiency programs across Massachusetts.  Lorenzo has a Masters of Public Health with an Environmental Health focus, and a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resource Management; both degrees are from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Karen Melvin, Deputy Agricultural Commission and Sealer, San Diego County Department of AWM

Karen Melvin is a Deputy Agricultural Commission/Sealer with the San Diego County Department of Agriculture, Weights and Measures.  Karen manages several programs within the department including Certified Farmers’ Markets, Organics, Eggs, Agricultural Water Quality, and Integrated Pest Control.  In addition, Karen is an active member of the Live Well San Diego Food System Initiative and the San Diego Food System Alliance. She has assisted in the farmers’ market pilot gleaning program and other aspects of gleaning and food recovery.

Jacklin Mikhail-Fox, Registered Environmental Health Specialist, County of San Diego

Jacklin Mikhail-Fox, Registered Environmental Health Specialist, graduated from Long Beach State University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Health Sciences.  Jacklin started her career with Los Angeles County Environmental Health as an Environmental Health Specialist, inspecting and conducting plan review for retail food businesses.  She moved to San Diego in 2007 and continued her career with San Diego County Environmental Health as a Plan Check and Inspections Supervisor.

Jacklin has been working as a Supervising Environmental Health Specialist for the County of San Diego Department of Environmental Health for ten years and currently oversees the Coastal District of the Food and Housing Division.  Within this District, Jacklin’s team conduct inspections of food facilities (restaurants, market, schools, etc.), public swimming pools, massage facilities, and food vendors at street fairs and farmers markets.

Jacklin plays an active role in the County’s Food Systems Initiative as a member of the working group, representing food safety and related regulations within all facets of the Region’s food system.

Vanessa Moore, Vice President of Operations, Jacob’s & Cushman San Diego Food Bank

Vanessa Moore was born and raised in San Diego County. She is an executive professional with over 14 years of nonprofit management experience ranging from program development, to strategic planning. Vanessa is currently the Vice President of Operations at the Jacob’s & Cushman San Diego Food Bank. Under her leadership, the Food Bank has expanded services, increased nonprofit partners, and is distributing 189% more food than when she was hired in 2003 – servicing 370,000 San Diegans monthly. Vanessa currently chairs the board of a Linda Vista non-profit called the Bayside Community Center, which focuses on empowering their community by giving people a place to meet, learn, lead and play. She also enjoys serving on the San Diego Hunger Coalition’s Hunger Free Advisory Board, and is the Vice-Chair of the San Diego Food System Alliance. In addition, Vanessa has participated in several leadership programs including LEAD San Diego’s Impact program, the Fieldstone Foundations Emerging Leaders program, and earned her Not-for-Profit Management Development certificate from the Harvard Business Club of San Diego.

Aviva Paley, Senior Director, Kitchens for Good

Aviva Paley is a passionate social entrepreneur with professional experience in marrying a social mission with proven business driven strategies.  In 2014 Aviva became a founding team member of Kitchens for Good, a social enterprise catering operation that provides culinary job training for the unemployed, while simultaneously transforming surplus produce into nutritious meals for the hungry. Aviva serves as the Senior Director overseeing all job training, hunger relief, and food rescue programs, as well as managing the marketing and fundraising efforts for Kitchens for Good. Aviva has been chosen for several prestigious awards and fellowships including Food Tanks list of 20 Food Leaders Under 40, The UC Global Food Initiative’s 30 under 30 Food Leaders Award, The ROI Fellowship, and the Arianne de Rothschild Fellowship.

Prior to joining Kitchens for Good, Aviva was a Food Justice Fellow at the Leichtag Foundation and Communications Coordinator at the Johns Hopkins Center for Livable Future.

Kyle Pogue, Environmental Program Manager, CalRecycle.

Kyle Pogue is an Environmental Program Manager with California’s recycling agency, CalRecycle. He and his team focus on reducing the amount of organic materials (such as food and green waste) disposed in California’s landfills. These efforts include preventing wasted food, recoverin edible food for human consumption, or composting it to help build healthy soils. His team helped establish the inaugural Greenhouse Gas Reduction Funds program that helped fund compost, anaerobic digestion, and food rescue infrastructure. In his spare time, he values his time with his family and volunteers as a board member with the American River Conservancy land trust.

Chuck Samuelson, Founder and President, Kitchens for Good

Chuck Samuelson, Founder and President of Kitchens for Good, has spent a lifetime in the food service industry as a chef, restaurateur, and consultant. Chuck started his career as a dishwasher at 13 and rose to Executive Chef and Restaurant General Manager in his late twenties. He has owned award-winning restaurants, a catering company, been a Hospitality Consultant to top San Diego restaurants, and served as the Senior Manager for Food Services at Stone Brewing Company. While working for a lifetime in the Hospitality Industry, Samuelson was shocked at the tremendous amount of food being wasted while many in the community lacked access to nutritious food. Samuelson leveraged his network and skills to build a social enterprise that is designed to break the cycles of food waste, poverty and hunger in the community.  His focus in the Social Enterprise world is to insure that Kitchens For Good is sustainable and has the revenue streams to insure long term viability and resources to scale up and increase impact

Jessica Sprague, Food Sourcing Manager, Feeding San Diego

Jessica Sprague is currently the Food Sourcing Manager at Feeding San Diego. She previously held the position of Retail Donations Coordinator with FSD where she worked closely with retail donors and the FSD partner agencies who directly pick up over one million pounds of donated product from retailers each month. In her current role as Food Sourcing Manager, Jessica will oversee the procurement of all products from local and national donors to fulfill Feeding San Diego’s mission of serving San Diegans facing hunger. Jessica has a Masters of Nutrition Science and Policy from Tufts University. She worked as a food safety educator for agricultural producers and food service industries in New Hampshire before moving to San Diego.

Domingo Vigil, Program Coordinator, County of San Diego Land Use and Environment Group

Domingo Vigil, Program Coordinator with the County of San Diego’s Land Use and Environment Group Executive Office oversees the implementation of the Live Well San Diego Food System Initiative. Domingo leads a multi-departmental working group in the County that works to improve different aspects of the food system, including growing, production, access, safety, and disposal of food. Domingo is currently leading efforts to develop a regional Food Donation Action Plan, which will include an assessment of infrastructure needs for food pantries in the region. The Food Donation Action Plan will inform the development of future programs and allocation of resources to support food donation and the reduction of food waste and food insecurity in the region. Domingo has a B.A. in International Business from San Diego State University, and a Masters in International Affairs with a focus on Environmental Policy from the University of California, San Diego.

Stephanie Wilkins-Singleton, Program Coordinator, The Department of Environmental Health Food and Housing Division

Stephanie Wilkins-Singleton is a Program Coordinator, working for The Department of Environmental Health Food and Housing Division. Her career in the field of Environmental Health has spanned Twenty-six years, starting with Los Angeles County Department of Environmental Health as a trainee, where she learned the importance of food safety and security. During her tenure with LA County, she worked her way up the ladder to become a lead inspector in their vehicle inspection program, conducting compliance inspections of mobile food vending vehicles. After nine years with Los Angeles County, Stephanie and her military family relocated to Fresno, where she also worked in the field of Environmental Health. Fifteen year ago, Stephanie and her family landed in San Diego County. These day she helps to train and mentor new EHS staff, ensuring they conduct comprehensive field inspections of permitted facilities to verify the sites they inspect are following health and safety principle and practices with the objective of preventing food borne outbreaks and keeping the general public safe from risk of illness in our county.