The Team

Board of Directors

The Chef Ann Foundation (CAF) is a registered, tax-exempt 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, governed by a dedicated Board of Directors who share our mission. Our diverse board supports the growth of our foundation by offering guidance in key areas. Click on each name below to read more about these accomplished individuals.

  • Ann Cooper, President & Founder

    Visit the Chef Ann page to learn about her career, books, consulting work, and upcoming speaking engagements.

  • Bonnie Moore

    Chef Bonnie Moore has over 25 years of experience as a culinary visionary, industry strategist, chef, and educator. As Founder and President of Moore Impact, she works with hospitality leaders to deliver clear strategies, creative solutions, and pathways for growth. Formerly the executive sous chef at the renowned Inn at Little Washington, she continues to consult with the Inn on special projects and business development. As Executive Chef of Global Food & Nutrition, she developed sustainable strategies for integrating U.S. commodities into the diets of developing countries and traveled internationally to conduct food demonstration classes and cooking workshops as part of food aid programs. Bonnie has brought her passion for food, agriculture, and wellness to live audiences around the United States through her classes at Blackberry Farm, L’Academie de Cuisine, Sur la Table, and various speaking engagements at national conferences.

    Bonnie earned degrees in culinary arts from Johnson & Wales University and in pastry arts from L’Academie de Cuisine. As Past President of Women Chefs and Restaurateurs, she is a mentor to women in the restaurant industry and continues to promote women as role models to inspire future generations of culinarians.

  • Patrick O’Kelly, Treasurer

    Since 1981, Pat has been Certified Public Accountant and Principal of Cahill O'Kelly and Associates in Boulder, CO. Pat is one of the owners and participants of the world class Colorado music festival in Telluride, Planet Bluegrass.

  • Karen Trilevsky

    Karen Trilevsky has promoted social responsibility, sustainability, positive impact, and entrepreneurship for more than 20 years. She created FullBloom Baking Company, a fast-growing company with more 250 employees, based on the belief that a business can lead the way to: better communities, harmony with the environment, and a better life for workers. Her delicious, naturally made products and celebrated 95,000 square foot Platinum LEED-certified baking facility helped her partner with well-respected companies including Starbucks, Jamba Juice, Trader Joes, and Whole Foods.  

    In 2012, Karen was recognized as a Champion of Change by President Barack Obama for her work demonstrating that corporate environmental leadership makes sense, both for business and for American communities.

    People Magazine named Karen a “Hero Among Us” for her decade-long innovative Smart Cookie Scholarship program, which prepares first generation Latina and Latino immigrants for educational success by providing scholarships to help students complete Associate, Bachelor’s, and Master’s Degrees. The program also provides mentors, advising, personal development and enrichment activities, networking opportunities, and other scholarship events to ensure students succeed at the university level and beyond. To date, almost 100 students have earned their degrees through this vertically integrated program.  

    In 2012 Karen sold her award-winning company to Swiss food conglomerate Aryzta AG.  

    In addition to CAF, Karen currently sits on the boards of the Smart Cookie Scholarship Fund and GoVoluntr a social network that connects volunteers, nonprofits, and businesses together. A TEDx speaker, she graduated from UCLA's Entrepreneurship Program. 

  • Emily Friedberg

    Emily Friedberg helps organizations leverage their ability to market and to increase brand awareness by harnessing the power of technology. She drives development in the product-marketing arena by utilizing a macro-level systems approach coupled with the ability to translate complex concepts into micro-level details, resulting in sustainable/systemic and effective programs. By building strong partnerships, she continues to refine her expertise in product marketing with an acute focus on data-driven results and efficiencies. Prior to moving her focus to smaller technology start-ups, Emily spent 14 years working in large technology companies. She has been and continues to be dedicated to creating excellent customer experiences and exceeding customers’ expectations.

    Emily holds a BS in Information Systems and a MS in Telecommunications from the University of Colorado, Boulder.

  • Barbara Koch

    Barbara serves as executive  director for the Life Time Foundation, whose mission is to inspire healthy people and a healthy planet by improving children’s nutrition – one school lunch at a time. Life Time Foundation's nutrition philosophy includes encouraging school districts to cook more food from scratch, and eliminate the following 7 ingredients: high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors, artificial sweeteners, artificial preservatives, Trans fats, hormones and antibiotics and bleached flour. Barb believes that by eliminating these ingredients of concern, we will help to reduce the incidence of diabetes and obesity, kids will perform better in school and lead healthier lives. 

    Prior to her work with Life Time, Barbara oversaw development for national non-profits, including the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Starkey Hearing Foundation, and Children’s Cancer Research Fund. Barbara has a degree in Journalism from University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN.

  • Helene Kennan

    Helene serves as Guckenheimer’s Chief Innovations Officer, leading the interdisciplinary Operations Excellence Group, comprised of the Culinary team, the Merchandising & Standards team, the Food Lab, and the Continuous Process Improvement Team. A 25+ year food service industry veteran, Helene is a chef who grew into an operational executive. She is a former President of Women Chefs and Restaurateurs (WCR), a former board member of the Chefs Collaborative and an advisory board member for the Southern California School of the Culinary Arts. She has also been recognized by the Beard Foundation’s Great Regional Chefs series.

    Raised in Philadelphia, Helene’s first job was working in her family’s pizza shops. She attended Penn State for Restaurant and Hotel Management and started her culinary career with high-end convention hotels. Then she moved to San Diego in 1987 as a concept R&D chef in corporate dining and joined Bon Appetit (BA) in 1996, at The Getty in Los Angeles. Just prior to joining Guckenheimer, Helene was serving as BA’s Regional Vice President of Google Global Accounts. 

  • Tom Spier

    Tom Spier is the Founder and Managing Partner of Boulder Food Group. Tom previously co-founded EVOL Foods and was the COO of Bear Naked Granola during its rapid expansion. Under Tom’s management, both EVOL and Bear Naked were successfully sold to public companies. Additionally, Tom proudly serves on two food focused non-profit boards, the Growe Foundation and Organic Voices (Just Label It). The Growe Foundation focuses on experiential learning opportunities for children through Boulder Valley School District. Organic Voices has a dual mandate, specifically 1) to promote the growth of organic food and 2) to work at the federal level to achieve mandatory labeling of genetically engineered foods. Tom was born and raised in Santa Fe, NM. He attended Santa Fe Preparatory School and then Vanderbilt University where he graduated magna cum laude with dual degrees in Economics and Spanish. Tom lives in Boulder, CO with his wife and two sons.

  • Amy Shipley

    With more than 20 years of experience, Amy is a global food-marketing specialist with a flair and passion for developing dynamic communication programs and culinary experiences for some of the nation's most prestigious brands, restaurant chains, and U.S. commodities. She joined Sterling Rice Group in 2015 as a managing director to help further develop the extensive B2C and B2B food practice. Her relationships in the close-knit food community run deep, including media, agricultural and culinary thought leaders, chefs, food scientists, and retailers. Most recently, Amy developed SRG STREETDive, a proprietary culinary immersion and ideation think tank for food professionals and their customers, designed to identify new trends from a street view and stimulate fresh thinking in R&D.

    A strong believer of integrated marketing solutions, Amy has extensive expertise in strategic planning, branding, consumer and trade advertising, public relations, culinary innovation, media planning, event marketing, sales support, trend tracking, and producer-grower communications. Her expertise spans both CPG, foodservice brands and agricultural commodities, and non-food companies.

    Prior to SRG, Amy was a Senior Vice Presidentwith Ketchum/San Francisco, a global communications firm. Amy currently serves on the Women's Council at the Leeds School of Business at University of Colorado, is a fellow at the Culinary Institute of America, and was president of the International Foodservice Editorial Council (IFEC). She has won numerous advertising, public relations, and marketing awards, including PRSA Silver and Bronze Anvils, ADDY Awards, National Agri-Marketing Awards, and Mercury Awards. Amy resides in Boulder, Colorado, named the "foodiest Town in America" by Bon Appetit magazine, with her husband and two children. 

Staff

Our dedicated staff is integral to running the day-to-day operations of CAF and delivering our mission by continuously growing our reach, capabilities, and available resources.

  • Mara Fleishman, Chief Executive Officer

    After becoming involved in school food as a concerned parent, Mara Fleishman served on the CAF board of directors from the very beginning, then transitioned to Executive Director in March of 2013. She is now the Chief Executive Officer of the Foundation. In this role, Mara supervises all CAF staff and is responsible for program development and oversight, national partnerships, strategic planning, and organizational growth. Mara has nearly 20 years of experience working in natural products including 12 years with Whole Foods Market where she served most recently as National Director of Partnerships. She is dedicated to educating people regarding the benefits of healthy food, and has spoken about sustainable business practices on panels at Yale University and at the University of Colorado’s Leeds School of Business where she was a guest lecturer. In addition to CAF, she has held board seats at The Growe Foundation, the Kitchen Community, and Naturally Boulder. Mara’s background in marketing and partnerships, combined with her expertise in natural and organic food and her advocacy efforts to improve school food, uniquely position her to lead CAF through its growth and expansion in the coming years.

    mara@chefannfoundation.org

    Favorite school lunch: Sweet & Sour Chicken

    Favorite way to keep healthy: Mostly eat plant-based foods, lots of rest, regular exercise, and lots of laughing.

  • Emily Gallivan, Programs Manager

    Emily joined the Chef Ann Foundation in February 2016 and assists with grant processing, program management, and keeping things running smoothly in the office. Emily believes that food is a central aspect to everyday life and all children should have access to not just food, but good healthy food and knowledge regarding that food. Emily received her M.A. in Food Studies where she spent time studying food through various disciplines, including business, culture, history, sustainable agriculture, and the journey food takes from production to consumption. She also spent time researching the potential of farm-to-school programs and agritourism connecting local farmers with consumers. She has experience working in a variety of small food businesses that focus on regional ingredients including restaurants, cheese shop, and distillery. 

    emilyg@chefannfoundation.org

    Favorite school lunch: Veggie Burger

    Favorite way to keep healthy: I enjoy playing tennis, swimming, roaming about on long walks, and eating a variety of fruits and vegetables. 

  • Meghan Brenner, Programs Director

    Meghan joined the Chef Ann Foundation in October 2016 and focuses on implementation and management of the School Food Online Learning Program, launching in summer 2017. Meghan is passionate about nutrition and health and believes that broader access to healthy, unprocessed food supports the wellness of both our communities and our planet. Before coming to the Chef Ann Foundation, Meghan worked at the University of Denver -- Colorado Women's College supporting curriculum development and academic services for classroom and online learning. Meghan earned her bachelor's degree in Sociology and Spanish and her master's degree in International Administration, both from the University of Denver. 

    meghan@chefannfoundation.org

    Favorite School Lunch: Chicken Fajita

    Favorite Way to Stay Healthy: I love staying active by hiking, climbing, skiing, snowshoeing, and enjoying the beautiful Colorado outdoors. I also love growing my own vegetables and herbs and trying new healthy recipes with friends and family. 

  • Danielle Staunton, Development Director

    Danielle joined the Chef Ann Foundation as the Director of Development in December 2016 to bolster the organization’s fund raising efforts after a lengthy career in business development. Danielle was inspired by the work of the foundation when she competed in CAF’s first Real School Food Challenge, having to create a school food scratch recipe meeting the strict USDA nutrition requirements and a budget of $1.25. She knew at that moment that she would someday use her talents to make sure kids everywhere know what real food tastes like.

    As a mother, Danielle knows first-hand the challenges of raising children with healthy eating habits and how high sugar, highly processed foods can affect a child’s mental and emotional health. Exposure to a variety of fresh fruits and veggies at an early age is key to creating a healthy palate and lifelong positive relationship with food.

    danielle@chefannfoundation.org

    Favorite school lunch: Pulled pork sandwich

    Favorite way to keep healthy: I love cooking with quinoa, finding interesting substitutions when baking with my son, and spontaneously getting the dance party started no matter where I am.

  • Heidi Kessler, Chief Programs Officer

    Heidi Kessler, Chief Program Officer, is a passionate school food advocate who believes that school meals are essential in raising a healthier generation of children. Heidi provides visionary leadership and strategic management for the development, implementation, and evaluation of all Chef Ann Foundation programming. As a well-known trainer, speaker, and expert in environmental, policy, and systems changes that support healthy eating, Heidi has created innovative models and tools for school nutrition reform that are used across the country. She has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, and NPR, and sat on numerous expert panels for childhood obesity prevention and school food reform. Prior to joining CAF, Heidi was the Executive Director of the Smarter Lunchrooms National Office at Cornell University, and a senior leader of the nationally recognized childhood obesity prevention program, Let’s Go! 5-2-1-0, based at the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital in Portland, Maine. Heidi has a Master of Science in Nutrition from Northeastern University and is a nationally certified School Nutrition Specialist.  

    Favorite school lunch: Zucchini Parmesan

    Favorite ways to stay healthy: I am a gardener, cook, and aspiring herbalist. I also incorporate yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda into my daily life to channel my energy into making the world a better place. 

  • Molly Brown, Administrative & Programs Associate

    Molly joined the Chef Ann Foundation in April 2017 as the Administrative and Programs Associate. As a health and wellness enthusiast, Molly's professional experience has been in the natural products industry and the outdoor industry. She holds a B.S. in Health Care Management from Ithaca College where she took classes on public health, multicultural health issues, and child development. Molly believes that all children deserve access to fresh, nutritious meals, and the best way to guarantee such access is with healthy school food!

    molly@chefannfoundation.org

    Favorite school lunch: Teriyaki tofu bowl

    Favorite way to keep healthy: Waking up at sunrise and going for an early morning run, followed immediately by a fresh smoothie. This combo gives me great energy and a clear mind that I can carry throughout the workday. 

  • Dakota-Rae Westveer, Marketing and Communications Manager

Meet Chef Ann Cooper

Chef Ann Cooper is an internationally recognized author, chef, educator, public speaker, and advocate of healthy food for kids.

From the Blog

Food Family Farming Officially Becomes Chef Ann Foundation

Executive Director, Mara Fleishman, Pays Tribute

Chef Ann changes lives...she changed mine. ​I met Ann Cooper in 2008 when she came to a meeting that I was a part of at the Boulder Valley School District (BVSD). There was a small group of concerned parents and...