A Future in Food Panel: How 5 Food Professionals Got Their Dream Jobs
Friday, February 24, 2012
4:15 - 5:15 PM
It’s easy to fantasize about a career in food, but harder to figure out how to get from dreams to reality. To help you sort out fact from fiction, five food professionals are coming down to earth to answer your burning questions. Where did they start? How did they get here? And what advice do they have for you?
Moderator: Dorothy Neagle
Co-Founder, Good Food Jobs
Dorothy was born and raised on a small farm in Kentucky, and was ready to escape the rural life when she was accepted as an Interior Design student at Cornell University. After working with New York City architects for five years, she found herself yearning for more opportunities to work with people and to actively contribute to environmental conservation and sustainability. Now she's returning to her roots as co-Founder of Good Food Jobs, promoting the food industry in all its local, sustainable, small-batch glory, and helping others to find sustainable roles in the food world.
Natural Foods Chef, Author and Television Host
Andrea Beaman is a Natural Foods Chef, thyroid expert, author, and television host dedicated to alternative healing, sustainable eating and living. Andrea was a featured contestant on Bravo’s hit reality TV show, Top Chef (season 1). She is a regularly featured food and health expert on CBS News and is the host of the Award Nominated Fed UP!, a cooking show that educates guests and viewers about how to cook for, and cure, bodily ailments. She is a firm believer that our food is powerful, and our daily choices can create our health or lack of it. She teaches fun cooking classes and health seminars to over 2000 students annually and makes learning about food and positive lifestyle activities a joyful experience for everyone.
CEO / CBO, Harlem Brewing Company
Born in North Carolina, Celeste Beatty traveled the world and studied beer like a scholar before making 5 gallon batches in her studio apartment at Mount Morris Park and 123rd Street. She is the founder of the Harlem Brewing Company and its flagship brand Sugar Hill Golden Ale.
Publisher, Edible Magazine
Brian Halweil is the editor of Edible East End and co-publisher of Edible Brooklyn and Edible Manhattan magazines. He is also a senior fellow at the Worldwatch Institute, where his work has focused on organic farming, biotechnology, hunger, and rural communities. He is the author of Eat Here: Homegrown Pleasures in a Global Supermarket, and he lives in Sag Harbor, New York, where he and his family keep a home garden and orchard, and raise oysters.
Director of Strategic Development, School Food FOCUS
Kathy Lawrence, Director of Strategic Development for School Food FOCUS, a national collaborative that leverages the knowledge and procurement power of large school districts to make school meals across the country more healthful, regionally sourced and sustainably produced. She works to ensure that the FOCUS team has the big-picture perspective, multicultural skills, and allies needed to fulfill their mission. She advocates for school districts using their purchasing power to support of children’s health and a triple bottom line commitment to food systems development. For over 20 years Kathy has been a leader in sustainable agriculture, food justice and non-profit management, founding and directing Just Food in New York City, and serving as executive director of the National Campaign for Sustainable Agriculture executive director. Kathy serves on the boards of Just Food and NESAWG, loves to sing, and is devoted to her perennial flower gardens.
Entrepreneur / Co-Founder, Kopali Organics
Zak is the co-founder and CEO of Kopali Organics, a brand of incredibly luscious, perfectly rich, pure dark chocolate and fruit treats crafted entirely at the point-of-origin of the cacao. Certified organic and fair trade, Kopali’s chocolates are every bit as important as they are delicious. Motivated by a deep purpose and guided by a clear strategy, Kopali’s chocolate sweetness has already managed to reach, delight and inspire millions of fans while helping to support thousands of farmers who in turn care for ecosystems that support all life. This is a dream come true for Zak whose ultimate vision is using the power of enlightened commerce to help create a more just, compassionate, and sustainable world for all.
Raised in Mexico City, Zak’s fascination with philosophy and science led him first to a Cognitive NSF fellowship at UC Berkeley. Zak’s experience with cancer in his mid twenties led him to seek a more purpose-driven and sustainable life. He left academia to start Gravity, a virtual reality software company with clients including IBM, Disney, and Intel. After selling Gravity to Frog Design in 2001, Zak started leading meditation groups in its conference rooms before leading international interfaith delegations to India and the Middle East. Bringing it all back down to earth, Zak then drove a vegetable-oil-powered bus from the Bioneers conference in Richmond, California to the southern Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, promoting sustainability to millions. Zak founded Kopali with his partners while living and farming on their off-the-grid educational farm and sustainability center there in the rainforest, where he also studied permaculture. Zak is also a passionate singer, songwriter, and relentless optimist.