Board of Advisors
Jonathan Bloom is a journalist, consultant and thought leader on the topic of food waste. Jonathan wrote the book American Wasteland and created the web site Wasted Food. He has spoken on food waste from Santiago to San Francisco to Singapore and consulted with the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, Harvard Law School, Natural Resources Defense Council and General Mills. In 2013-2014, he was the O.V.W. Hawkins Expert-in-Residence at Bucknell University. A Boston native, Jonathan now lives Durham, NC, with his wife, two sons and many, many containers for leftovers.
Andy Burness is the founder and president of Burness, a mission-driven global communications firm supporting nonprofits and the people they serve. Founded in 1986, the company has served over 400 non-profit organizations around the world and has been cited four times by Washington-area media as on the region’s “great places to work.” Andy is regularly sought after for counsel on strategies to increase the impact and amplify the voices of those committed to improving quality of life for people who are poor or vulnerable.
Nicole Civita directs the Food Recovery Project, a special initiative of the University of Arkansas’s Agricultural and Food Law LL.M. program. The Food Recovery Project aims to reduce food waste by producing informational resources regarding the legal aspects of food recovery. She also on the faculty of Sterling College, where she serves as the Assistant Director of the Rian Fried Center for Sustainable Agriculture & Food Systems. Professor Civita’s scholarship focuses on alternative, sustainable, and place-based agri-food systems, food conservation, and food justice.
Robert Egger is the Founder of L.A. Kitchen, a social enterprise driven nonprofit that recycles fruits and produce, trains people for jobs and produces healthy meals. Prior to this, Robert founded and led the DC Central Kitchen, which provides meals from donated food and job training programs for the unemployed. Since opening in 1989, the Kitchen has given 1,500 individuals full time employment and produced more than 30 million meals. Egger also founded the Campus Kitchens Project, which is the only other national program doing student-led food recovery on college campuses.
Rob Greenfield is an adventurer and activist on a mission to inspire more happiness, health, and freedom in the world. He’s dove into over 1,000 dumpsters across America to bring attention to food waste and hunger and hosts demonstrations for the media and public to educate and create action.
Dana Gunders is a Staff Scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and author of the Waste Free Kitchen Handbook. She leads NRDC’s food waste team and was one of the first to bring to light just how much food is wasted across the country through her 2012 report Wasted: How America is Losing Up to 40% of Its Food from Farm to Fork to Landfill. Dana also co-authored the 2013 report The Dating Game, which revealed how confusing expiration date labels lead to food waste in America. Her work to reduce food waste has been covered on CNN, NBC, The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, NPR, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver and many other outlets.
Jim Larson is the Program Development Director at the Food Donation Connection, one of the largest and oldest food recovery programs in America. Annually, the Food Donation Connection coordinates the donation of over 40 million pounds of surplus prepared food, providing meals to those in need while benefiting donors through tax return savings.
Jerry leads General Mills sustainability efforts globally. Lynch began his career at General Mills in 1995 and has served in various general management and marketing roles across the company globally. In addition to his day job, Lynch volunteers his time on the Advisory Board of the Raptor Center of Minnesota, Food Recovery Network and the Board of Trustees of the Keystone Center. Lynch earned his Bachelor’s degree from Wheaton College in 1984 and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in 1995.
Gina is the Founder and CEO of Mrs. Green’s World. She is the host of the international radio show Mrs. Green’s World and is a trusted voice in the green movement among experts and mainstream Americans. Mrs. Green’s World is helping to create a global community of people who care about the planet.
Gary Oppenheimer is a CNN Hero, World Food Prize Nominee and the Founder and Executive Director of AmpleHarvest.org, which helps 42 million home/community gardeners reduce food waste by connecting them with more than 7,500 food pantries in all 50 states, making them for the first time, capable of receiving the growers excess bounty.
Evan Ponchick is the founder of the Alpha Phi Omega Food Recovery and Donation Program at the University of Maryland (2010). He led the first ever food recovery on a college campus at the University of Maryland and then helped spread the idea to other college campuses while teaming up with other interested students to found the Food Recovery Network as we know it today! Evan currently works at Dropbox as an Engineering, Product, and Design Program Manager (internal operations). Previously, Evan worked in education reform and education technology at General Assembly, and KIPPDC.
Stephanie Nagy Shewmon is an Account Supervisor at Edelman Public Relations. Edelman PR helps companies redefine their social purpose and business relations. Shewmon also helps lead the Washington D.C. Taste of the Nation, sponsored by Share Our Strength, which raises thousands of dollars for hunger-fighting nonprofits.
Brian Turner is the Regional Director of Safety Support for Sodexo covering North America. Brian has over 28 years of experience in food safety, public health and food security. This includes management experience in regulatory, grocery, food service and food processing as well as time with the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation.
Angel Veza is COO of First Line, which aims to create both healthy individuals and communities, by transforming commonly wasted produce into the healthiest whole-food products. Originally, Angel worked in the education field teaching underserved communities. After working with students for 7 years, Angel received her Grade Diplome at the French Culinary Institute and worked through New York City’s top restaurants including Morimoto and two-Michelin starred Atera and with foodservice companies like Compass Group. During that time, she witnessed the significant amount of food being wasted and then decided to work with ReFED, a noprofit dedicated to reducing food waste through Economics and Data. As an expansion of that, she also worked in supply chain and led strategic sourcing and procurement at Manhatta Restaurant, part of Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group.
Colleen Wright-Riva is the Director of Dining Services at the University of Maryland, College Park, which is the oldest and largest food donor to Food Recovery Network. At UMD, Colleen has championed the launch of Terp Farm and The Campus Pantry. These initiatives increase sustainable food options on campus and help alleviate food insecurity for members of the campus community. Colleen was honored as a 2015 recipient of the University System of Maryland Board of Regents’ Staff Award for her exceptional work contributions. Prior to her work at UMD, Wright-Riva started several innovative programs during her time as Director of Dining and Retail Services for Cornell University.