About Greater KC Food Policy Coalition


To advocate for the greater Kansas City food system and promote food policies which positively impact the nutritional, economic, social and environmental health of the community.


All people in greater Kansas City will have access to healthy affordable food that nourishes individuals, communities, the local economy and the environment

Core Values

  • Cooperation: Building cooperation and unity among all components of the food system is beneficial.
  • Food Security: All people have the right and should have the ability to easily obtain healthy, safe and affordable food.
  • Local and Sustainable Solutions: Our community should support a local and regional food system that is economically and ecologically sound.
  • Health: Our food system should promote optimal health for all.
  • Education: Knowledge empowers individuals and communities.


  1. To increase institutional purchasing of locally grown food, thereby encouraging greater production of fresh, nutritious local foods and enhancing economic vitality of our region.
  2. To increase the availability and accessibility of retailers offering healthy, safe and affordable food, especially in underserved communities.

The Greater Kansas City Food Policy Coalition is an alliance of individuals, government representatives, businesses, and organizations representing all critical components of our local food system, including healthcare, agriculture, education, social services, food distribution, government, private business, nonprofit agencies, and others.

The Greater Kansas City Food Policy Coalition:

Beth Low-Smith, Director
Andrea Clark, Policy & Planning Associate

Steering Committee
The Steering Committee shares their expertise, skills and time to further advance the goals of the coalition. Many of the members are involved in initiatives of the Greater Kansas City Food Policy Coalition, including the Food Access Work Group and the Urban Farms Zoning and Planning Task Force. Their contributions are invaluable in the coalition’s success.

Randall Burdge
Shawnee Mission Unitarian Universalist Church, Community Garden Leader

Matthew Chrisman
University of Missouri-Kansas City, Assistant Professor of Public Health

Karen Clawson
Mid-America Regional Council, Principal Planner

Nick Conforti
C&C Produce, Vice President

Crystal Futrell
K-State Research & Extension – Johnson County, Health & Food Safety Extension Agent

Mark Gawron
Cultivate KC, Metro Farms & Food Systems Coordinator

Kate Giessel, Secretary
Attorney and Nonprofit Consultant

Jeff Henkle
Nature’s Own, Owner

Charlie Hopper
Hardesty Renaissance EDC, Director

Jerry Jones
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City, Director of Community Health

Emily Lecuyer, Past Chairperson
Equity Squared, Managing Director

Claudia Martin-Ayoade
Johnson County Community College, Registered Dietitian

Bridget Moss
Kansas City Area Transportation Authority, Digital Content Editor

Eleni Pliakoni
K-State University – Olathe, Associate Professor of Urban Food Production & Postharvest Handling

Rob Reiman
The Giving Grove, Executive Director

Cary Rivard, Treasurer
K-State University – Olathe, Associate Professor of Horticulture & Natural Sciences
K-State Research & Extension Center – Olathe, Director & Extension Specialist

Danielle Robins-Gregory, Ex Officio
KC Healthy Kids, President

Stu Shafer
Johnson County Community College, Professor of Sociology and Sustainable Agriculture

Karen Siebert, Chairperson
Harvesters, Advocacy & Public Policy Adviser

Dre Taylor
Nile Valley Aquaponics, Founder
The KC Urban Farm Coop, Founder

Leigh Wagner, Vice Chairperson
KU Integrative Medicine & KU Medical Center, Registered Dietitian & Adjunct Faculty

Tina Wurth
Lincoln University Cooperative Extension, Regional Educator

Jane Zieha
Blue Bird Bistro, Owner