John Lyons is a film producer who resides in New York City. As an independent producer, he has worked on many successful films, including BOOGIE NIGHTS, PIECES OF APRIL, AUSTIN POWERS, and SISTERS. From 2003 to 2011, he was the President of Production at Focus Features, overseeing all aspects of production and marketing of popular and award-winning films. Among the films he produced, twelve won Academy Awards and fifty-five received Oscar nominations.
Brett Williams is the Senior Vice President of Public Affairs at CreativeFuture, a nonprofit coalition of over 450 companies and organizations and tens of thousands of individual members who advocate for the value of creativity in the digital age. Brett began his career in New York, and spent over a decade in independent film production. Brett has a lifelong passion for food, cooking, and education. He grew up in Texas and Singapore, and currently lives in Los Angeles with his partner and two pugs, Beverly and Carol.
Eden Werring is a seasoned executive with eighteen years of experience in nonprofit and philanthropic management and strategy. After serving as Executive Director of various nonprofits and foundations, Eden joined Arabella Advisors as Senior Advisor in 2015. Eden is also a writer, currently pursuing her MFA in Creative Nonfiction at Sarah Lawrence College, and is at work on her first book, a memoir. She lives in Connecticut with her husband and two children, one dog, six chickens, and a vegetable garden.
Mary Bernard is an accomplished lawyer whose more than 20 year career focused on corporate finance and investment banking. From 2004 through 2008, Mary served as Global General Counsel – Investment Banking at Credit Suisse, where she had responsibility for the Bank’s corporate finance, debt finance, mergers & acquisitions, and private equity businesses globally. She also sat on the Bank’s operating committee and global commitment committees. Mary began her legal career in 1988 at King & Spalding in Atlanta. She became a partner in 1996 and moved to New York City to help build and lead the New York corporate finance practice until 2004. Since retiring in 2008, Mary has run Willmar Holdings LLC, a family investment and real estate office. Mary’s charitable activities focus on children and education. In addition to serving on our Board, she is a former director of Student Sponsor Partners and has sponsored high school students through the SSP program for more than 15 years. Mary joined our Board in 2017 and is a regular volunteer at P.S. 7 in East Harlem. She splits her time between New York City and Telluride, Colorado.
In January 2012, Alison Cayne opened Haven’s Kitchen, a cooking school with café and private event space in New York City. Committed to promoting good food policy and community activism, Alison is a guest lecturer at The Institute of Culinary Education and New York University Food Studies Program. A born-and-raised New Yorker, Ali lives in the West Village with her five children and their dog Ivy.
David Chang is the chef and founder of Momofuku, which includes restaurants in New York City, Washington DC, Sydney, Toronto, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles, and a bakery (Milk Bar) established by award-winning pastry chef Christina Tosi with multiple locations.
Jim Head is a Partner at BDT & Company, a merchant banking firm. He has 30 years of strategic and financial advisory experience, including 21 years at Morgan Stanley, where he was the co-Head of M&A for the Americas. Jim received a BS in Finance from Indiana University and an MBA from UCLA’s Anderson School.
Anjali Kumar is an idea acupuncturist, lawyer, traveler, and explorer. She’s held legal positions at Google and Acumen Fund, and most recently she was the founding General Counsel and Head of Social Innovation at Warby Parker. Anjali is also a designer (her handbag line was featured in Vogue) and a writer, with an inaugural book and a comedy series in the works. She lives in New York City and Hudson, NY with her husband, Atul, and daughter, Zia.
Elizabeth Leeds has worked as a consultant for nonprofits, served as Director of Development of Common Good, worked in Mozambique on a transfrontier wildlife conservation and ecotourism project, and also found herself serving as COO of an underwater treasure recovery enterprise. She is the mother of a two-year-old daughter and lives in Manhattan with her husband, Jeffrey.
David Maupin was born in California and studied art history at the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Pennsylvania. He started his professional career abroad in Italy, where he met Lehmann Maupin Gallery co-founder Rachel Lehmann in 1991. For nearly two decades, Lehmann Maupin has fostered the careers of a diverse group of internationally renowned artists, both emerging and established, working in multiple disciplines and across varied media.
Christine Muhlke is the founder of Bureau X, a food and lifestyle consultancy. After years as the executive editor at Bon Appétit, she is now editor at large. She has written cookbooks with Eric Ripert of Le Bernardin, David Kinch of Manresa, and Eric Werner of Hartwood, and contributes frequently to the New York Times, Lucky Peach, Cherry Bombe, and other publications. She lives in New York City and gardens on weekends in Woodstock.
Fernanda Niven is a native New Yorker with a passion for health, wellness, education, and food. Her background is at the intersection of fashion, business, and wellness, and she has held executive roles at Parasol and Vera Wang. She joined the Board of Edible Schoolyard NYC in 2010.
Mark Ramadan is the Co-Founder and CEO of Sir Kensington’s, creators of non-GMO, globally-inspired condiments. Prior to Sir Kensington’s, Mark worked as a consultant at McKinsey & Company in New York City, specializing in the consumer goods and travel industries. He graduated in 2008 from Brown with a BA in Economics and International Relations.
Jacco Reijtenbagh was born and raised in the Netherlands and graduated from Erasmus University Rotterdam with a Masters in Finance. He is the Managing Director at Plaza Management, a family office, advising on investment decisions. Raising three kids of his own in New York City, Jacco feels passionate about improving food education in schools and beyond.
Lela Rose is a widely recognized fashion designer known for her unique aesthetic of juxtaposing refined elegance with modern whimsy. Born and raised in Texas and having attended school in Colorado, she is inspired by the color palette of the lush outdoors, as well as her passion for food and entertaining. Lela graduated from Parson’s School of Design in 1993, and since then, has established a fresh point of view in American fashion, continuing to redefine a sophisticated, yet modern lifestyle.