Regina joined as the Executive Director in 2015 and is responsible for setting the vision, strategy and fundraising efforts for Food Recovery Network. Regina works with the amazing team at national headquarters, stakeholders and partners around the country to achieve ambitious goals. Overall, FRN's goal is to support the higher education to be the first sector where food recovery is the norm and not the exception. But Regina won't stop there. Businesses, events, public institutions also have a role in reducing food waste at the source. They also have a role to recover their surplus food and Regina wants to ensure they are integrated within the vibrant FRN network to make that happen. Most recently, Regina is tasked with implementing the three-year strategic plan for FRN and cannot wait to talk to all of YOU about how you can support FRN's goals.
For over a decade, Regina has worked in the nonprofit sector, committed to social justice issues because she believes it is in this sector that she can make the biggest difference and that people are the engines of positive change. At the Coro Center for Civic Leadership in Pittsburgh, she worked with employers in all sectors to establish internship programs and to match talented individuals with those opportunities. At Independent Sector and LIFT in Washington, DC, Regina worked to raise awareness of the nonprofit sector's abilities to solve our society's most complex issues. Regina received her MA in Literary and Cultural Studies from Carnegie Mellon University, and her BA in English Literature from the University of Maine at Augusta. Regina loves to garden, hike, travel and cook meals with friends. she also loves to collaborate to make big ideas a reality!
Katie moved to Maryland from South Florida to join the FRN team in 2018, and is excited to merge her love of all things food-related with her work at FRN. As FRN’s Operations Coordinator, Katie keeps FRN’s national office running smoothly. She is working to strengthen and streamline FRN’s practices and create new strategies for supporting the organization’s mission to fight waste and feed people. Katie loves to engage with food and environmental justice initiatives and connect with people through food. When she’s not at work, Katie can be found experimenting in the kitchen (with various success), working her way through her movie watchlist, daydreaming about her next adventure, and soaking up the sun any way she can. Katie believes access to healthy, delicious food is a basic human right, and she’s excited to work with FRN to create a more just, sustainable food system!
Hannah Cather is the Program Manager at FRN, where she works with students and fellows to expand the breadth and capacity of the network. hc (as the team calls her) earned a journalism degree with a focus in print & photography from the University of Tennessee, which is in her home state. hc was involved with the FRN Chapter at UTK, and since graduating, she has served as an FRN Member Support Fellow and Program Associate before stepping into the manager role. She keeps herself busy through organizing various community activities, like FemEx and DC Zinefest. hc is quick to start conversations with those around her, be they strangers or not, and often invites friends to commune over food.
Manager of External Partnerships
Cassie Olovsson joined the FRN team in 2018 as Manager of External Partnerships to expand FRN’s network in communities across the U.S. Now living on the East Coast, Cassie dreams of the familiar West Coast beaches of Hawaii and Southern California but is excited to explore the green, rich urban area of the DMV. Cassie earned her Bachelor’s in Sociology with minors in Psychology and Economics at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. During her time at school, Cassie’s passion for environmental sustainability and education flourished in her experience teaching environmental science to elementary students. With a background in event planning and program management, Cassie strongly believes in creating and building relationships with community partners. She is excited to root her passion for relationship building into growing various programs at FRN. As her mom likes to say, she is the perfect blend of head in the clouds and firmly planted feet on the ground. In her spare time, Cassie enjoys day-dreaming, thrifting, attempting DIY projects, and working her hardest to not let her houseplants die.
fellows & VISTAs
Research & Outreach VISTA
Heather Banikas is working to expand FRN’s presence through research and outreach to four specific regions in order to support the organization’s larger goal of feeding more food-insecure individuals and families, while also reducing food waste. She first became interested in the food cycle during her undergraduate career at the University of Mary Washington. While studying global development, she became aware of food issues around the world. She focused her capstone research paper on a zero-waste agroecology center in Guatemala that provides organic fruits and vegetables to surrounding villages. In her free time, Heather relishes in the simple things in life: time with family, knitting scarves, and taking a couple of deep breaths at the end of a long day. Her dream is to design and build a tiny home from scratch.
Program & Special Events Fellow
Sydney is the Program and Special Events Fellow at FRN, supporting the planning and execution of various FRN events. Sydney earned a degree Food Science and Human Nutrition from Clemson University, where she discovered her passion for fighting food waste and insecurity. Before starting her journey with FRN as the National Food Recovery Dialogue Intern in June 2019, Sydney served as an AmeriCorps VISTA, managing a community-lead gleaning program in Kaua'i, HI. In her free time, you'll find Sydney learning to play the ukulele, hiking, or traveling for food. Her current expedition is to eat at every bakery in D.C.
Development and Special Events Fellow
Cate is working to ensure FRN reaches its financial goals to support the growth of the food recovery movement. A Michigan native, Cate graduated in 2014 from Michigan State University with a degree in Social Relations and Policy, focusing on social justice issues like food access and housing insecurity. Prior to coming to FRN, Cate worked for migration and refugee services, connecting new immigrants to social services across the country. Outside of work, Cate enjoys trying new foods, thrift shopping, and exploring the Botanic Garden in Washington, DC.
Program Evaluation VISTA
Chrycka Harper joined the team to assist in the data collection process and enhance the resources offered to chapters. She recently graduated from Howard University with an undergraduate degree in Psychology and a Master’s of Social Work, concentrating in Community, Administration, and Policy Practice with a focus in Mental Health. During her last year in the graduate program, Chrycka created a food justice internship to explore her interests in the relationship among food insecurity, nutrition, sustainable agriculture and mental health. She hopes to inform the food system from the perspective of mental health empowerment through programs, policy, and community development. In her free time, Chrycka enjoys growing in her Christian faith, managing her website, Rycka’s Kitchen, undertaking culinary or foodie adventures, and dancing with the latest moves.
Program and Outreach Fellow
Dominique McMillan is a Connecticut native that found herself all over the eastern seaboard. After establishing an FRN chapter at her alma mater, Barry University, she set out to work for the groundbreaking organization. Dominique has a passion for history and plans to write books that will be taught in university and college settings. In her free time, you can find her binging on the latest show on Netflix, or heading into Washington, D.C. for mass at St. Dominic's Church. Her favorite quote is, “Be who God meant you to be, and you’ll set the world on fire” by Saint Catherine of Siena.
Program & Special Events AmeriCorps VISTA
Julia supports the Program Team and helps plan and manage FRN events. A recent graduate of Dickinson College, Julia received her degree in American Studies with a concentration in Indigenous Studies, choosing to invest her final year researching and writing about food insecurity facing Indigenous peoples within the United States. She hopes to continue educating herself and those around her about sustainable and accessible foodways through her work at Food Recovery Network. As a native Californian, Julia misses the redwoods and mountains of her home state, but is excited to explore the bustling city of DC. In her free time, you can find Julia hiking, reading, pondering her next travel adventure, cooking, and eating. She hopes to take advantage of all the wondrous food options DC has to offer.
Alumni Programs VISTA
Neal Montoya is working towards engaging FRN alumni through regular communications and connecting with those currently not involved. She studied English with a minor in History at the University of Maryland, College Park. Although she wasn’t involved with FRN at UMD, Neal is excited to learn more about the food recovery process as well as hear stories from alumni. When she is not working, Neal can be found with her nose in a book, watching a movie, or taking a nap.
Food Recovery Verified Fellow
Erin Price is a Virginia native, currently residing in Washington, DC. She discovered her passion for food policy and food justice issues while earning her Master’s degree in Public Administration from American University. A firm believer in the power of public-private partnerships to create social good, Erin is excited to apply her background in nonprofit management and resource development to promote a more sustainable and equitable food system with FRN. In her role as the Food Recovery Verified Fellow, Erin is working to strengthen existing relationships and develop new partnerships with food businesses across the country in an effort to recover more food and reduce hunger. In her free time, Erin enjoys wandering through the farmer’s market, experimenting with vegetable-inspired recipes in her kitchen, and traveling - especially to explore our National Parks!
Food Recovery Verified VISTA
Sean is working to support and expand the Food Recovery Verified program by continuing to grow the number of FRV accounts while also expanding its tracking and outreach capabilities. Before joining the team, Sean worked in the food service business and saw how detrimental food waste could be for the environment and the millions of people who go hungry every day. Sean graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park with a B.A. in Government and Politics.He has always had a passion for public policy and for working to solve or alleviate world issues such as climate change, poverty, and lack of healthcare. While attending UMD, he worked with several student-led organizations to raise awareness for global poverty, environmental issues, and the world refugee crisis. Working with these organizations enhanced his understanding of how urgent world hunger and environmental degradation truly are. Sean is excited to join the nonprofit world of food hunger and sustainability to help alleviate these problems. In his free time, he enjoys reading the Song of Ice & Fire Series, hiking in the mountains and the forests, and discovering new music.
Board of Directors
Perteet is an accomplished food industry professional, bringing years of sales and marketing experience and a passion for making an impact on food waste to her role on FRN's Board of Directors. In her role as Principal, Brand Growth Solutions, Perteet supports SPINS’ corporate mission of increasing the presence and accessibility of natural and organic products by developing winning brand renovation and innovation strategies across a wide range of clients. Prior to joining SPINS, Perteet held leadership roles at LEGO and General Mills. Perteet holds a Master’s of Business Administration from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management.
Nosheen is currently managing FHI 360’s Nigeria portfolio, valued over $400 million. She is involved with projects addressing HIV, Malaria, and Education and most recently provided programmatic and management support to the END in Africa Project, which works towards the elimination of neglected tropical diseases in West Africa. Nosheen has over 7 years of experience with non-profit management, focusing on capacity building, budgeting, working with diverse donors, and developing the strategic direction of programs. Nosheen holds a Masters in International Development from the University of Pittsburgh. She is excited to support Food Recovery Network and join the movement against hunger and food waste.
Pete is a VP, Sales, P&C Insurance for EXL Service, a global provider of digital transformation, data and analytics and business outsourcing. Pete has spent his entire career in the Information Technology space, in varying roles from system engineer to COO, but always with a focus on business development. Over the years, he has also been involved in a number of initiatives. He founded the Columbia Insurance Technology Consortium to attract professional talent in the Insurance Technology field to the Columbia area, work with local universities and trade schools to develop curricula tailored to the field, and mount marketing campaigns to attract other complementary companies to the area. He also served as the Chairman of the Advisory Board for the Midlands Technical College Business School in South Carolina.
Catherine "Katie" Crombez is a Madonna University graduate with a B.S. in Biochemistry, and is currently pursuing a Bachelor's of Music in Piano Performance, also from Madonna University. She founded the FRN chapter at Madonna in 2015 and "has been dedicated to the mission ever since!"
According to Katie, free time is a miracle for her, but enjoys spending it at the Detroit Opera, riding her unicycle, and going on spontaneous adventures with friends. She is honored to be a part of the first Student & Alumni Advisory Board and is "excited to continue to work with FRN to strengthen this movement across the country!"
Student activist turned garbage guru, Claire Cummings is the first-ever Waste Programs Manager for Bon Appétit Management Company Foundation, the nonprofit arm of the food service pioneer that operates more than 650-plus cafés in 33 states for universities, corporations, and museums. Claire has doubled Bon Appétit’s food-recovery programs, developed implementation guides for launching reusable to-go container initiatives, supported the development of a new kitchen-waste-tracking system, and helped launch Imperfectly Delicious Produce, a program that has rescued over half a million pounds of produce from going to waste. Claire is one of Food Tank’s 30 Women Under 30 Changing Food, she recently received Saveur’s “Activist” Good Taste Award, and her work has been featured in Bloomberg News, Sunset Magazine, and The New York Times. Claire’s passion for sustainable waste management began when she was a student dining at Bon Appétit's café at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR.
Jessica Felix Romero, PhD., is communications director for Jobs With Justice, a leading national network organization that brings together diverse voices at the local, national and global levels, to win improvements in working people's lives and shape the public discourse on workers’ rights, jobs, and the economy. She has over 14 years’ experience in social justice advocacy and communications. She has served as a communications expert on a variety of issues including labor rights, health, environment, corporate social responsibility, peacebuilding, and agriculture. During her recent tenure with Sojourners, she helped set the national strategy around faith-oriented narrative change. Previously, she was with Farmworker Justice working to empower migrant and seasonal farmworkers in the U.S. to improve their living and working conditions and access to justice. She was an active participant in the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s Truth, Racial Health, and Transformation enterprise as a framework contributor, panelist, facilitator, and author of a paper titled “Rooted Racism: Racial Hierarchy Legacies and Farmworker Communities.”
With a doctorate in conflict analysis and resolution, she integrates holistic system analysis and transformative narrative change design to help nonprofits advance social change. Her pioneering doctoral research combined sustainable agriculture and peacebuilding theory by investigating how the methodologies people use to grow their food can impact the way communities resolve conflicts, particularly in post-war contexts. Her field research in El Salvador documents the transformational possibilities of conflict-resolution oriented food systems that feed people and nurture peace.
Growing up in a rural, agricultural community in central Wisconsin, Tina saw firsthand that food waste was avoidable. From professional farmers to backyard gardeners, people in the community planted, grew, harvested and consumed what they needed, with minimal waste. It was farm-to-table as a way of life. After relocating to Atlanta, Tina observed frequent food waste in commercial venues with an abundance of food, often adjacent to a population that experiences food insecurity and hunger on a daily basis. This experience was a call to action and to service. Tina is honored to be part of the Food Recovery Network and its mission to fight food waste and hunger. Tina is located in Atlanta, Georgia and works as a privacy attorney for AT&T.
Tim Kunin is a social entrepreneur and the CEO of GreaterGood, which operates www.TheHungerSite.com; the first “Click-to-Give” website. GreaterGood has over 40 million Facebook fans, and has contributed over $30 million in cash to charity partners since 1999. Among other things, GreaterGood is focused on impacting intergenerational poverty by increasing the income and education of women in the developing world; and is one of the United States’ largest importers and resellers of artisan products made by rural women.
Tim has traveled to over 40 countries as part of his work, and enjoys wilderness canoeing and backpacking with his wife Sue Guzmich and their two grown children Mara and Daniel.
Bill McConagha is a partner in the Food and Drug practice at Sidley Austin LLP. He is a nationally-recognized lawyer in Food and Drug law who has a unique combination of experience with regulatory, enforcement, and legislative matters. He worked for more than 17 years at the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) in a variety of capacities including as an Assistant Commissioner, a Senior Attorney in the Office of Chief Counsel, and a Health Policy Advisor to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP). While at HELP, Bill helped negotiate the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011 (FSMA), which modernized federal regulation of the nation’s food supply. Before joining FDA, Bill worked as a criminal defense attorney at the Office of the Public Defender for the State of Maryland. He is a graduate of Carleton College and the Georgetown University Law Center.
Ernie Minor is Vice President for Business Development, Education Division AVI Foodsystems Inc. Previously he was Senior Vice President, Operations for Higher Education in the mid-Atlantic states. Ernie has been involved with Stop Hunger efforts through Sodexo Foundation for several years, and previously served on a VA Governors’ Task Force for eliminating childhood hunger. Ernie brings more than 30 years’ experience in collegiate dining services, and is especially excited about FRN’s model that connects the dots – making sure food does not go to waste but is picked up and delivered to agencies that can serve to those in need.
Ted Monk is the Vice President of Corporate Responsibility for Sodexo North America, and oversees the Better Tomorrow 2025 commitments around health and wellness, sustainable sourcing, and water, waste and energy management, as well as sponsoring Sodexo’s initiative PRIDE (People Respecting Individuality, Diversity and Equality). Ted has a background in operations with more than 25 years of experience in Corporate Services, Health Care and Schools, both in the US and in the UK. He earned his degree in hospitality from Strathclyde University in Glasgow, Scotland and attended graduate classes at Cranfield Business School. Born in the UK, Ted moved to the US in 1995 and lives in the San Francisco Bay area with his wife Jacqueline.
Jennifer Schmitt is the program director and lead scientist for the NorthStar Initiative for Sustainable Enterprise at the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment. Jennifer’s research focuses on tracing environmental impacts through supply chains, circulating byproducts back into production systems, sustainable agriculture and conservation outcomes in Tanzania. As part of this research, Jennifer studies the environmental impacts of food waste, using food waste for animal feed as well as the social and environmental intersection of food waste. She has also been engaged in local food waste awareness events, including www.OpenFeasts.org. Jennifer has an M.S. in applied economics and Ph.D. in conservation biology from the University of Minnesota and a B.S. in biology and international relations from Beloit College.
Student and Alumni Advisory Board
The Student and Alumni Board (SAAB) is a group of thirteen passionate and dedicated student and alumni leaders lending the perspective of students on the ground to the overall mission and direction of Food Recovery Network. Follow the link to learn more.