Many thanks to the following individuals, who make up your first official Board of Directors. If you have ideas or concerns, feel free to contact any of your board members at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kathy Carlson Nash grew up in a home where food was always a centerpiece. Her family grew much of their own food in their home garden when she was younger. Although always aware of food issues, she became much more concerned and conscious about her food choices after the birth of her children. To that end, her family participates in meat, vegetable, and fruit CSA programs, as well as receiving egg and milk delivery from local farms. She also works with “Eat Local DuPage” to participate in and coordinate group food purchases from area farmers. Aside from her involvement with the Prairie Food Co-op, Kathy is a Systems Engineer at the University of Illinois, where she has worked for the past 11 years. Kathy is serving a 3-year term.
Jeremy Nash lives in Lombard, where he is a stay-at-home parent and community organizer. He, along with many other dedicated community members, is currently is in the process of opening up Prairie Food Co-op, a community owned grocery store in the DuPage County area that will focus on selling local, sustainable, and minimally processed foods. To this endeavor Jeremy brings over 20 years of experience in the food industry working mostly in restaurants as a chef, server, and front of house manager, and in a natural food grocery store as a bakery manager and consultant. Jeremy is a passionate advocate for the local/slow food movement as well as general foodie and personal chef for his family. When Jeremy is not busy with the Prairie Food Co-op or wrangling his adorable but goonish boys, he spends those ten minutes playing guitar, swimming, or high fiving random strangers. Jerry is serving a 3-year term.
Stephanie has had a lifelong interest in health and nutrition. After nursing school she started a degree in holistic nutrition and when children entered the picture, was determined to healthily feed her growing family. This passion, combined with an increased understanding of environmental concerns, led her to search out local farmers to meet their family’s needs. For the past 7 years she’s actively organized cooperative purchases with friends, enjoyed the bounty of CSAs, gardened, preserved, and drove all over Chicagoland sourcing dairy, eggs & meat. Shortly before moving to Lombard in 2012, she learned about the Prairie Food Co-op initiative and immediately volunteered in hopes of making this dream a reality. Stephanie is serving a 3-year term.
Julie A. Neubauer, is a third generation Lombardian, having been born into her paternal grandparents home. Although she moved away with her family as a young child, she now calls Lombard home once again. Julie is an attorney by day and a food and cooking hobbyist on her off time, feeding friends and family good eats at every opportunity. Energized by good flavor and outraged by the poisons now commonly found in conventional grocery items, quality and safe fresh food has become her passion. Julie is also driven by a sense of community investment and is inspired by opportunities for revitalizing the heart of Lombard, making her dedication to bringing a successful cooperative grocery store to western suburbs a perfect fit! Julie is serving a 2-year term.
Russ gained a heightened interest in the content of foods after being diagnosed with celiac disease a number of years ago. Reading labels to spot hidden ingredients containing gluten increased his awareness of what is really in our foods. This awareness led to frequent visits to farmers markets and choosing organic products at grocery stores. Getting involved in The Prairie Food Co-op is a natural outgrowth of a healthier lifestyle. Russ brings to the Co-op over 30 years of business experience in sales and management roles in both large and small companies. Russ is serving a 2-year term.
Penny Riding, interim Co-Treasurer
Penny is a lifelong resident of Lombard, Illinois and wants to be part of the solution to ensure that local, sustainable food is available to the community at large. My family and I are focused on achieving a healthy lifestyle for our overall quality of life and to have healthier choices available for us in the community. Penny’s professional background is in a healthcare setting as a business analyst where she researches quality and safety improvement issues throughout the healthcare system. Penny is serving a 1-year term.