Voices from the Grassroots

A platform for organizers and organizations in the good food movement to share their work—both triumph and failure.

The Voices series seeks to tell it like it is—the challenges of food systems work as well as the opportunities, best practices, innovative strategies, collaborations, and raw inspiration. In doing so, we also aim to shed light on those stories not typically heard in scholarly narratives, particularly from disenfranchised groups and more isolated communities.

Most Voices blogs are cross-published as articles in the Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development (JAFSCD—a sister program of NAFSN).

Phoebe Stephens is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Waterloo in Canada, working under the supervision of Dr. Jennifer Clapp. Her research focuses on impact investing for sustainable food systems and is funded by the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Phoebe has published articles in Globalizations Journal, the Canadian Journal of Food Studies, and a number of book chapters on alternative financing and sustainability in the food system.

Amy Halloran wrote The New Bread Basket, a record of and template for the revival of regional grain production. Her activism for specialty grains and for changing emergency feeding programs shares a common thread: of restoring human values to the work of farming and the acts of feeding ourselves and each other. Amy can be contacted at 221 Tenth Street, Troy, NY 12180 USA, or halloran15@gmail.com.

Rafael Alvarez has been a working writer since he joined the city desk of the Baltimore Sun as a college student during the Carter Administration. He spent 20 years covering neighbor­hoods, crime, and blues music for the Sun before working on merchant ships and writing for the HBO drama, “The Wire.” His many books include the short story collection Tales from the Holy Land and First and Forever: A History of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. He can be contacted at P.O. Box 432, Linthicum, MD 21090 USA or orlo.leini@gmail.com. More about his writing is at https://patreon.com/rafaelalvarezbaltimore.

Dr. Kathleen Liang received her MS and PhD in Agricultural Economics from Purdue University. Dr. Liang is the founder of Dollar Enterprise experiential learning in entrepreneurship, and an award-winning scholar of interdisciplinary research, teaching, and outreach focusing on entrepreneurship and innovation, food systems, multifunctional agriculture, and sustainable community development.