About Us

Our Mission

Fresh Food Connect aims to create a more healthy, sustainable, and local food system by creating a market for homegrown food.  

An increasing amount of food is grown in backyards, patios, and community gardens in urban environments across the world, yet there is virtually no market for this food aside from abandoning an overgrown gourd on your neighbor’s front step. Fresh Food Connect seeks to give this food the market it deserves, in turn making our food systems more local and less wasteful. 

Fresh Food Connect licenses its technology to urban agriculture and food rescue organizations who use the mobile-app to coordinate the aggregation of home grown produce to be donated, sold, or used to otherwise create positive change in the local operator's food system. Individual gardeners sign up on the Fresh Food Connect app to donate their backyard grown produce that would perhaps otherwise go to waste. Fresh Food Connect conveniently helps solve “the zucchini problem” by directing surplus produce from garden to hunger relief center, either through a pick-up or drop off model, depending on local operations.

Staff

Helen Katich, CEO

Helen is committed to serious work without taking herself too seriously. She has dedicated her career building organizations and participating in efforts that work towards equity, primarily with a focus on food systems.  Over the last ten years, Helen served as a Co-Founder and Board Member of Boulder Food Rescue, Co-Founder of Seattle Food Rescue, Director of Food Rescue Alliance, Program Manager at Metro Caring, and now has the pleasure of leading Fresh Food Connect.  She is a passionate traveler, with most of her recent months eating her way through Oaxaca, Mexico.

Laura Lavid, Product and Operations Director

Laura has almost 20 years experience in community based food work, including Denver Urban Gardens, American Community Gardening Association, Florida Organic Growers and Sprout City Farms. She recently joined Fresh Food Connect as the Community Engagement and Marketing Director and is excited to provide more opportunities to connect food and community nationwide. Outside of work, you’ll find Laura in the garden or in the kitchen finding new ways to prepare vegetables.

 

Juan Gallegos, FactorX, Marketing Director

Juan works as contract Marketing Director for Fresh Food Connect because he deeply cares about doing work that changes the world. For over ten years, he has worked in social justice communications for non-profit organizations until he launched FactorX in 2020. FactorX is a creative agency that designs and develops materials, websites, art, print media, and communications strategy for projects and campaigns that promote justice and equity.

 

Sarika Nadar, Marketing and Communications Intern

Sarika is a current senior at Boston University studying Business Administration and Management with a concentration in Marketing. When she's not studying, she's eating her way through Boston. She loves to travel and try new food from different cultures. Her latest adventure was to Peru to try their world-famous ceviche.

 

 

Board of Directors

 

Turner Wyatt, President 

Turner is an award-winning social entrepreneur focused on consumer-based solutions to food waste. Turner is co-founder and Board President of Fresh Food Connect. He currently serves as the CEO of the Upcycled Food Association, and was previously the Executive Director of Denver Food Rescue, and member of the Denver Sustainable Food Policy Council.

 

Cindy Chang

Cindy is Groundwork Denver's Executive Director and has been serving Groundwork Denver in various roles since 2010, including as a volunteer, Board, and staff member. Cindy has a background in nonprofit management, philanthropy, and has a deep passion for the environment. She earned a Masters in Business Administration from the Yale School of Management and a Masters in Environmental Management at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. She also has a B.A. from Tufts University.  In her free time, she enjoys yoga, walking, and her two cats.

 

Andrew Conklin

Andrew is an entrepreneurial technologist with over 15 years of systems architecting, data modeling, application engineering, and customer success across startup, nonprofit, and enterprise government sectors. Andrew believes the best way to value life is to be in service to others, and particularly focuses on health and environmental issues. He serves on the Practitioners Board of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM.org), likes to play Squash, and enjoys getting his hands dirty in gardens under the sun.

 

Jack Fritzinger

Jack is an entrepreneur whose passion for business development has taken him around the world. From non-profits in Colombia and South Africa, to telecommunications in Boston and biotechnology in Baltimore, Jack loves building relationships to help high-impact startups grow. Currently, Jack runs Timberline Strategies, a consulting firm aimed at building enterprises at the intersection of economic opportunity and social-environmental good. With its combination of food systems innovation and technology, Fresh Food Connect is a perfect fit, and Jack is enthusiastic about making a difference both with his skill set and the lettuce that he's learning to grow in his garden.

Emily Olsen 

Emily is equally as passionate about finding the best slice of pizza as she is about making sure that it has a positive impact on our environment. Through her work in food access Emily has become increasingly interested in ensuring that our food system promotes the health of people, communities and our planet. With a background in health equity and food justice she has worked with communities across the country to create their own healthier futures. She helped found Fresh Food Connect while working with Denver Food Rescue. Currently she is the Director of Cloud City Conservation Center in Leadville, CO. Ultimately Emily believes that our own individual health is not separate from the health of our communities or our planet. She loves nothing more than a day skiing or running in the mountains followed by pizza topped with veggies from her garden, and making sure that neither her adventures or her food had a negative impact on the environment or the communities connected to it.

 

Why

Technology has turned car owners into cab drivers and homeowners into hospitality managers. Likewise, Fresh Food Connect works to turn gardeners into farmers by creating a market for homegrown food that may otherwise be left to waste. 

Fresh Food Connect is…

  • creating a more localized food system, which reduces food miles, and requires less fossil fuels for distribution. 
  • decreasing hunger and food insecurity by increasing the amount of nutritious available produce for those most in need in the community.
  • reducing food waste, a major global contributor to the greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change. 
  • creating social benefits by increasing access to healthy food and connecting community members.
  • easy to operate on a small budget and is now offering its technology nationally!


Facts about food waste:

 

Where We Work


 

California

Berkeley Food Network
Healthy Day Partners 

 

Colorado

Archway Housing - coming soon!
Boulder Food Rescue
Children's Farms in Action
Community Food Bank of Grand Junction 
Denver Food Rescue
Ekar Farm
Food to Power
Good Food Collective - past operator, not operating in 2020
Groundwork Denver
Kaizen Food Rescue
Longmont Food Rescue
Metro Caring 
Mountain Roots Food Project 
New Roots Colorado 
Project Worthmore
Sustainable Wheat Ridge

Illinois

Lakeview Pantry 

Iowa

Feed Iowa First
Table to Table 

Maryland

Baltimore Office of Sustainability - coming soon!

Minnesota

Loaves and Fishes MN 

Missouri

Harvesters 
Operation Food Search 
Urban Harvest STL - coming soon!

Nebraska

Open Door Mission 

New Hampshire

Grow Nashua 

North Carolina

CORMII Community Development Corporation 

Ohio

La Soupe 

Virginia

Grow a Row FC  

Washington

Food is Free Tacoma 

Wisconsin

Groundwork Milwaukee 
Grow It Forward 

 

 

    Contact Us

    info@freshfoodconnect.org

    Fresh Food Connect
    PO Box 181582
    Denver, CO 80218