Staff and Board

Sprout City Farms Staff

meg

Meg Caley, Director of Farming Operations and Education, and Co-Founder

Meg has a passion for bringing people together in the garden and around the table, growing food and community simultaneously. She has been working on a variety of farms since graduating college in 2005, has experience as a classroom and outdoor educator, and loves helping children and adults alike discover their new favorite vegetable. She moved to Colorado in 2008 from a grassfed meat and dairy farm in central New Jersey, where she was the head cheesemaker.  Meg has enjoyed her work in Denver so far on various urban agriculture projects including Produce Denver, an edible landscaping company; DeLaney Community Farm in Aurora, a nonprofit CSA project of Denver Urban Gardens; and her own backyard food forest in the North Park Hill neighborhood. She has also worked as an intern at Berry Patch Farms in Brighton, a pick-your-own fruit and vegetable market farm; as a farmers’ market operator for Haystack Mountain Goat Dairy out of Longmont; and as a cheesemonger and teacher of mozzarella-making classes at The Truffle Cheese Shop. Meg is thrilled to be developing Sprout City Farms to work towards a thriving local food system in the Denver area: sprouting city farms, rooting city farmers, and reconnecting folks to the land and food that sustain them.

As “founder and farmer-in-chief,” Meg manages all aspects of the operations and programs at the Denver Green School Community Farm and oversees staff at the Mountair Park Community Farm and the Dahlia Campus Community Farm. She can be reached at meg@sproutcityfarms.org

 

Katie Huszcza, Mountair Park Community Farm Manager

Katie grew up in Littleton, Colorado where she first discovered her passion for the outdoors. She pursued that passion at James Madison University in Virginia where she received a bachelors degree in environmental biology. After college, Katie moved to a farm and living community, Innisfree Village, that served adults with intellectual disabilities. It was at Innisfree where she found a passion for farming and for cultivating thriving communities. After two years at Innisfree, Katie spent three months WWOOFing in Ecuador where she improved her Spanish and expanded her crop knowledge. When Katie returned to the United States, she moved to Carbondale, Colorado where she worked at the Colorado Rocky Mountain School as the garden assistant. As the garden assistant, Katie helped run the one acre, high production garden that fed the students and staff of the boarding school. She also had the opportunity to work with the students in the garden. In 2014, Katie moved back to Denver to be close to family and for an internship through Denver Botanic Gardens and Craig Hospital. Throughout this internship, Katie got to hone her greenhouse management skills as well as work with patients with spinal cord and traumatic brain injuries. In 2015, Katie ran her own small market garden and sold produce at a local farmers market while managing Blue Truck Farms in Lakewood. Katie is incredibly grateful to work for Sprout City Farms as the Mountair Park Community Farm Manager and for the opportunity to follow her passion by growing food and cultivating community. She can be reached at katie@sproutcityfarms.org

 lauraLaura Lavid, Executive Director  

Laura holds a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology from the University of Kansas and a Master’s degree in Nonprofit Management from Regis University.  After college, Laura served 2 years in AmeriCorps; one with the National Civilian Community Corps in the Southeast Region, and one with Denver Urban Gardens in Denver, Colorado.  Working with community gardens, she realized her passion of connecting food and community.  She went on to work full time for Denver Urban Gardens as their Programs Coordinator.  In 2010, Laura spent the year traveling, learning Spanish and WWOOFing (Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms) throughout South America.  Upon returning to the US, Laura joined the staff of the American Community Gardening Association as their Programs Manager.  Laura worked at Florida Organic Growers as the Education & Outreach Program Director, overseeing their Education & Outreach programs including Fresh Access Bucks, Farmer Workshops, EBT Farmers Market Program, Internships, Development and others.  Additionally, she is a reviewer of Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development and is a Board Member of Resilient Futures International.  Laura is excited to return to Denver to join SCF as their Executive Director and looks forward to developing a thriving, just, sustainable and local food system based in community.  Laura can be contacted at laura@sproutcityfarms.org

 

Sprout City Farms Board of Directors

Jessica George, President

Moving to Colorado in 2007 from San Francisco, Jessica slowly began a switch from her 10-year career as a Technical Writer to local food and farming. She served 4 years as CSA Regional Sales Manager for Grant Family Farms, selling a weekly portion of the farm’s organic harvest to residents throughout Denver and Boulder. Since that time, Jessica has worked for a number of local non-profit and social impact companies, serving as Ambassador of The Local Food Shift, Program Director for Veterans to Farmers, Account Manager for Waste Farmers, and Communication Co-Chair on the Denver Sustainable Food Policy Council. After reaching her 6-year term limit as founding board member for Revision, a non-profit whose mission is to develop resident leaders, cultivate community food systems, and grow self-sufficient economies, she is thrilled to bring her experience and strong community connections to serve Sprout City Farms.

 

 

laurelLaurel Mattrey, Vice President

Laurel Mattrey is a Sustainability Planner with Denver Public Schools. Laurel has worked for over 10 years in the environmental nonprofit and consulting field in environmental planning, program development, grant procurement and administration, community outreach and energy education and training. Her diverse community network and strength in multi-faceted program management are evidenced by her past experiences coordinating federal policy outreach, energy efficiency education programs, community-based Superfund site organizing and county-wide land use planning processes.

 

ryanRyan Kaszycki, Treasurer

Ryan grew up in Denver and is currently a neighbor of the Green School farm. He along with his wife and son have been CSA members since 2012. He has a B.A. in Psychology and was exposed to issues around social and environmental justice through completing the INVST Community Leadership Program at CU Boulder. He is a CFP and works in personal finance with TIAA CREF.  Ryan is excited about the work Sprout City Farms does and is looking forward to helping it grow!

 

Ronda Belen

 

milanMilan Doshi

Milan has always had a passion for food. He graduated from the University of Missouri, and then went abroad for a few years. While in India, he volunteered with Vandana Shiva and her organization Navdanya. The organization focuses on helping farmers make the transition from an unsustainable model of the Green Revolution to the sustainable path of seed sovereignty and organic farming. Upon his return to the US, he headed to NYC for culinary training at the Natural Gourmet Institute of Health & Nutrition. The training educated him on how to take the food he learned to grow and make it into a nourishing meal. Milan then relocated to Denver, and is currently the owner/manager of the Queen Anne Bed and Breakfast. The Queen Anne has actively aimed to become a zero waste property and promotes the concept of community-supported hospitality.

 

Jordan Macknick

Jordan has a long history of working with the agricultural community on multiple angles of sustainability. In the past he worked in the Netherlands to develop joint venture partnerships among sustainable farmers, logistics companies, food processors, and retail establishments. In Minnesota, he worked for Windustry, an organization that facilitates education and discussions for farmers interested in wind energy. In his current role with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, he is working with farmers throughout the country to integrate solar energy into agricultural operations. Jordan has a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Environmental Science from Hamline University and a master’s degree in Environmental Science from Yale University.

 

Neysa Bermingham

Neysa Bermingham joins the Board bringing experience in health care transformation and a passion for the underserved. She spent the first part of her career in nonprofit development. Over the past ten years in her role at Kaiser Permanente, she’s been advocating and challenging the current health care system to provide better population based, public health interventions. Neysa recently served as the leader of the company’s strategy to invest in health care advancement for the underserved.
She is recognized for a number of public health strategic moves on behalf of Kaiser Permanente, including a five-year, investment strategy to address health care workforce shortages in El Paso, Teller, and Pueblo counties and increasing access to health care services for low-income C
oloradans. Neysa enjoys the beautiful splendor of Colorado by chasing after her toddler and two dogs on hiking trails and experiencing the culinary arts created by her husband, a renowned Colorado chef.

 

Rubio-Cortes, GlroiaGloria Rubio-Cortés

National Civic League President Gloria Rubio-Cortés is also the Executive Editor of NCL’s award-winning journal National Civic Review.  Rubio-Cortes has held leadership positions in business, philanthropy, and nonprofits in California and Colorado over the past 35 years and specialized in civic engagement, philanthropy, and civil rights. At philanthropic foundations, she was a senior manager at Levi Strauss Foundation and ZeroDivide.  She is an author and co-author of many articles on civic engagement.  Awards include the Disability Funders Network Bill Diaz Award for grantmaking.  She earned an M.S. in journalism from Columbia University and a B.S. from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

 

joeJoe Sammen

Joe has a passion for working to solve complex public health problems through systemic changes and has a long history of community organizing–both across the nation and around the world. Joe earned bachelor’s degrees in both biology and computer science at the University of Denver and also holds a master’s in public health from the University of Washington. He has experience in organic and urban farming. He currently works as the Director of Community Initiatives for the Colorado Coalition for the Medically Underserved and owns and operates Sunnyside Up Farm with his wife.

 

headshot1Jack Yeh

Jack comes to SCF from the world of global supply chains and restaurants. As a youth he grew up working in his family’s restaurants in the DC area. Much of his professional career has been in Asia working for multi-national companies such as Wal-mart and Groupon. While at these organizations he realized that food and physical products share similar societal challenges. Specifically, he saw that society doesn’t know where food/products come from or where they end up after use. He’s committed to bridging this knowledge gap and helping people make more informed decisions. Jack holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Oberlin College and a master’s degree in environmental management from Yale University.

 

Thank you to past board members and staff!
  • Nick Roberts
  • Annie Huggins
  • Jordan Gorrell (Secretary)
  • Elizabeth Poole
  • Sarah Roth
  • Daisha Versaw
  • Alison Hatch
  • James Hale (Co-Founder)
  • Dan Goldhamer
  • Frank Afflitto
  • Haley Sammen
  • James Dunn
  • Donna Baker-Breningstall
  • Chad Hagedorn (Co-Founder)
  • Sandra Jalufka
  • Elaine Granata
  • Tim Noe
  • Matt de Caussin
  • Jeff Buck
  • Tori Ford
  • Jill Litt
  • Lindsay Smith