Jim Hanna, MA, is Executive Director of the Cumberland County Food Security Council. He lives in Portland which has been his base to do food-system focused work since the early 90s. His children attended Portland Public Schools and he has spent much time working with and coaching students. He has been a Social Justice Influencer since before we named it that.
Kristina Kalolo, MA, is the Farm to School Project Director for the Cumberland County Food Security Council. During Phase I, she organized and oversaw the PPS Food Security Needs Assessment. In Phase II, she helped develop the Toolkit and convenes the Nutrition Education Action Group. Kristina also serves as the Markets Manager for the Somali Bantu Community Association's Liberation Farms where she works with Food Service Director, Jane McLucas to procure local produce from the farmers to create scratch marinara sauce for Portland Public Schools. Kristina is passionate about creating socially just food systems that participate in collective healing for the land and the beings it holds.
Vanessa Berry provides education and resources all over the state as an Environmental Educator for ecomaine. Through her work at ecomaine, she works with schools, businesses, and concerned citizens to help them practice the famous three R’s: Reduce, Reuse, then Recycle! Vanessa started her career in the public school system working in middle school science and special education, overseeing the school’s Green Team, and then transitioned from the classroom to commit a year to serving low-income Mainers through energy efficiency upgrades and education before joining the ecomaine team in 2018. When she is not sorting through garbage bins, Vanessa co-convenes the Sustainable Practices Action Group for Food Fuels Learning and hopes to create more equitable and sustainable systems within Portland Public Schools.
Lauren is deeply passionate about food justice and sustainable food systems. She has been pursuing this passion since high school, when she and a friend led a grassroots Farm to School initiative in her hometown in Connecticut. After high school, she moved to Maine to attend Bowdoin College, where she studied Environmental Studies and Government and Legal Studies with a focus on food systems. During college, she continued exploring food justice from various angles and locales: she worked on a organic farm, interviewed farmers across the state for a summer research project, led a service trip to Aroostook County, worked with migrant agricultural workers in Downeast Maine, and wrote a children's book based on her research with campesino farmers in Bolivia. She is thrilled to join the CCFSC and FFL teams and make connections with food system stakeholders in the Portland area.
Lily Chaleff, MA, first became interested in food activism in Worcester, MA in 2012 when building guerrilla community gardens, volunteering with Food Not Bombs, and dumpster diving with friends. After working as a farmer, restaurant worker, and fishmonger, Lily became a FoodCorps member in Portland, ME working in two elementary schools to connect kids to healthy food. In her current position as Schools & Youth Program Coordinator at Cultivating Community, she is able to direct her experience to the school district level and community wide organizing through Food Fuels Learning to support school gardens, cooking and nutrition education, cafeteria culture, and other food security initiatives. She practices permaculture, herbalism, and dismantling systems of oppression through both at work and in personal life.
Kathryn is executive director of the Locker Project, a Portland-based nonprofit that partners with Good Shepherd Food Bank to operate school-based food programs. Locker Project school pantries stock healthy staples and snacks for students to take home to share with their families. The agency's fresh food program recovers thousands of pounds of produce, bread, and meat every week from local markets -- food that would otherwise go to waste -- for distribution at schools and neighboring sites across Greater Portland. During COVID, the Locker Project has doubled the quantity of food shared with the community by packing thousands of take-home bags of fresh food and staples each month for children and families across Greater Portland.
Kathryn holds a B.A. in economics and religion from Bowdoin College, an M.A. in ethics from the University of Virginia, and a graduate certificate in applied research and evaluation methods from the Muskie School of Public Service, University of Southern Maine.
Jane is the Food Service Director for the Portland Public Schools. She has been in her position since Fall of 2015. Prior to her current position she was the Food Service Director in Norwood, MA for 15 Years. “Feeding children continues to be a passion, that I work hard at each day.” She is an active member of the Maine School Nutrition Association, holds her School Nutrition Specialist Certification from SNA, and her B.S from Johnson and Wales University in Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management. Jane loves to go to the beach, camp and check out the State and National Parks during her time away from work.
Anna works as a Garden Educator at Talbot Community School in Portland and is a board member of the Cumberland County Food Security Council. Anna found a passion for food justice work while studying Sociology at Bates College and interning at the St. Mary's Nutrition Center in Lewiston, Maine. Since graduating, Anna has worked with food systems in a variety of capacities, notably as the Food Fuels Learning Coordinator VISTA. Anna sees food as the solution to many of the most pressing issues our communities face and believes that when we collectively embrace nurturing ourselves and those around us our communities are strengthened. Anna is looking forward to bringing her excitement about education, experience farming and love for the outdoors to the Food Fuels Learning Leadership Team.
Alison is our new Food Fuels Learning VISTA Coordinator. She is excited to continue Grace Montgomery’s work on Phase 2 and to support development in new directions. Alison recently graduated from the University of Maine at Farmington with a degree in Community Health Education and minors in Nutrition Education and Childhood and Adolescent Health. Her field of study has only amplified her passion of helping those in need, with a focus on health disparities within a community. Alison is driven to make a difference in the lives of those she will be serving with the goal of improving their overall quality of life.
Colleen Donlan is the Local Foods Coordinator VISTA at the Cumberland County Food Security Council (CCFSC). At CCFSC, she coordinates the Cumberland County Gleaning Initiative, connecting local food and farms to people facing food insecurity. In Phase 2 of Food Fuels Learning, Colleen facilitates the Sustainable Practices Action Group, supporting schools with their waste management and local food procurement practices. She was born and raised in Portland, ME and attended Portland Public Schools.
Laura Robinson, MPH, is a board member of the Cumberland County Food Security Council. She has a background in public health and qualitative research, and is a certified holistic health and wellness coach. Laura recently co-founded a small organic veggie farm in North Yarmouth (Riverside Farm), and through her public health lens, she is also starting a baby food company, uniting her passions to help moms and families live their healthiest lives.
Amanda Hutchins, MS, is the Healthy Eating Active Living Program Coordinator at the City of Portland Public Health Division. Over the years, she has been partnering with Portland Public Schools on several nutrition based initiatives. Amanda is passionate about exposing all children to healthy foods and cultivating healthy habits that last through adulthood. She is truly excited about the innovative approach Food Fuels Learning is taking to tackle food security in the community.
Ailish is a member of the Portland School Food Services team, working as the Cafeteria Team Lead at East End Community School. Her focus at EECSC — beyond serving breakfast and lunch each day — is to create a consistently welcoming cafeteria environment, which supports students in making healthy choices, connects them to our food system at large and improves food accessibility. Ailish studied public health and art, and brings both of these lenses to her work each day. She previously served with FoodCorps in Connecticut, where she helped pilot a Breakfast in the Classroom program, taught Cooking Matters and food system education classes, and helped manage the schools' gardens. She is excited to be a part of this collaborative approach to improving food accessibility within the Portland community.
Our Graphic Designer
Winslow Robinson, PhD is a behavioral designer / researcher, specializing in the science of habit formation to realize design for social good / lifestyle as medicine. In addition, he sits on the board of directors for the Cumberland County Food Security Council, and is involved in state-level advocacy through the Southern Maine chapter of the National Young Farmers Coalition. With his partner, Winslow founded Riverside Farm using organic low/no-till practices with heavy emphasis on hand tools, also leveraging design thinking to improve beekeeping performance on their small apiary.