February 16, 2018 (ATLANTA) – Food Well Alliance - an organization that connects people, ideas, leadership and capital to grow healthier communities that value locally grown food - is excited to announce that Kim Karris has been named the new executive director.
Karris joined Food Well Alliance in 2015 as a member of its founding team. During her three years as the Grants and Community Capital Manager, she led the development of the organization’s grantmaking and capacity building program to scale Atlanta’s local food leadership. In this role, Karris managed the investment of more than $2 million and has built a diverse network of more than 100 grantee-partners that are making systemic impacts across economic development, health and nutrition, community vitality and environmental stewardship.
“I am deeply honored to have the opportunity to continue to build an inclusive network of leaders in Atlanta that is connected, collaborative, and united around transforming how our city eats,” Karris said. “Moving forward this will require Food Well Alliance to be more than just a grantmaker, but also a partner to organizations that use sustainable, locally-grown food as a tool to build more equitable health, wealth, and capacity in their communities. I am excited to lead this next phase of our collective work and help shape the future of our city.”
During her time at Food Well Alliance, Karris has spearheaded capacity building and professional development opportunities for Local Food Grant recipients and built and nurtured relationships with local food entrepreneurs, urban growers, garden-based educators, and community leaders in the wider local food movement.
Prior to Food Well Alliance, Karris spent five years launching the first U.S office of global NGO HelpAge International, developing start-up operations and implementing strategic fundraising and digital marketing strategies to support interventions to address old age poverty in developing countries, including older farmers affected by climate change. She has lived, farmed, and worked directly with agricultural communities in Hawaii, Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, and Nicaragua through Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WWOOF) and Project Bona Fide educational farm. Since 2006, Karris has served Atlanta-based environmental justice organization Women’s Action for New Directions (WAND), first as their Program Manager and later as Fundraising Chair on the Board of Directors. Karris is a graduate of Agnes Scott College and received a Masters Degree in Sustainable Food Systems from the United Nations University for Peace in Costa Rica, where she received a full fellowship.
Karris was selected by Food Well Alliance’s Board of Directors following a nationwide search.
Bill Bolling, Food Well Alliance Board Chairman and Senior Advisor said: “Kim is passionate about helping Atlanta’s local food movement access resources to build healthier communities. As executive director, we are confident she will continue to realize Food Well Alliance’s mission to foster meaningful collaboration, education and community based engagement.”
To learn more about Food Well Alliance visit foodwellalliance.org.