Thomas Fox is a full-time writer, part-time gardener, and sometime urban farmer. He is the author of Urban Farming: Sustainable City Living in Your Backyard, in Your Community, and in the World, which Pattie Baker of foodshedplanet.com says "looks like a textbook and reads like a novel." A nonpracticing attorney and former research editor at Reader’s Digest, Mr. Fox resides in New Jersey.
Camilla Hammer is the farm manager of Battery Urban Farm, an educational project started by the Battery Conservancy in 2011 to provide a space for the downtown community to learn about the values and practice of sustainable agriculture. Camilla took time off from her study of Environmental Philosophy at NYU to work as a farmer in rural India, and since that day has explored a variety of agricultural methods and models in order to understand how she could contribute to the sustainable agriculture community. After spending three years working on farms around the world, she returned to New York City in 2011 and was hired by the Battery Conservancy to start the Battery Urban Farm.
Erika Brenner is one of the trainers for Food 360 helping empower young people to become instruments of change with their career decisions. As an urban farmer Erika strives to create a collaborative resource for other members of the agricultural community to meet, share their experience and expertise, and inspire others to make healthy descisions in their everyday lives. She would like to see the creation of a regional sustainable food system where urban folks interact with rural farmers, rural farmers are BFFs with community gardeners, and everyone sits down to dinner.
Annie Novak is the head farmer and co-founder of Eagle Street Rooftop Farm in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Since 2005, she has worked with the Children's Gardening Program at The New York Botanical Garden. Annie has worked with GrowNYC and the New York City Greenmarket, Slow Food and Just Food. Her work in farming, food and education has been featured on Martha Stewart, National Public Radio, and CNN, among other publications.
A lifelong vegetarian, Annie spends several months of the year traveling and investigating different ways people grow and eat their food around the world. She's followed blueberries and cows through New Zealand, sheep and hops through Argentina, quinoa and llamas through Peru, cassava and fish through Fiji and the Cook Islands, and chocolate through Ghana. Her current interest is to visit all the countries in the world in which one can harvest salt and grow pepper.
Phyllis Odessey attended the University of Wisconsin for her undergraduate degree and New York Studio School for graduate school. She began her career as a painter in New York . Her work was shown at First Street Gallery in Soho. She went back to school for graphic design at Parsons School of Design and spent over 15 years in the corporate world at Time Warner as a Creative Director. After leaving Time Warner, Phyllis attended the New York Botanical Garden School of Continuing Education and received a certificate in the garden and landscape design. She has had a residential garden design business for 15 years. She came to Randall’s Island Park as Assistant Garden Manager 6 years ago. She is now Director of Horticulture for the Park and has a crew of 10 people. In 2007 Phyllis and Eunyoung Sebazco were awarded the Honor Award for the Water’s Edge Garden on Randall’s Island by the Perennial Plant Association. Phyllis was awarded the Royal Oak Foundation Fellowship in Sustainable Gardening in 2010 and The Chanticleer Scholarship in Professional Development in 2011.
EunYoung Sebazco is an award-winning, multi-cultural and multi-linguial , licensed landscape architect, who has managed and developed public, private and commercial gardens in Korea, Japan and the United States. She graduated top of her class from the New York Botanical Garden’s School of Professional Horticulture, where she was awarded the 2006 Developing Horticulture Skills Achievement Award. She was awarded the Perennial Plant Association Landscape Design Award in 2007. She earned a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture, from Tokyo Agriculture University in 2002 as well as a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from Shin Gu University in Korea in 1988. Her interest in creating urban spaces brought her to New York City. Gaining education and experiences in horticulture have allowed her to combine both science and design in her work. EunYoung currently works at Randall’s Island Park as Horticulture Manager.
Britta Riley is a social entrepreneur, technology designer, and artist. Britta started Windowfarms after reading Michael Pollan’s “Why Bother?” article in the New York Times Magazine, where he argued that one of the best things you could do as an individual to “go green” is to grow some of your own food. Britta faced particular challenges as a urban dweller who wanted to grow food, however, such as living in a 5-story walk-up in Brooklyn where rooftop gardening was problematic and space was too limited for dirt growing. The solution? To design and develop a vertical hydroponic system optimized for window installation that utilized natural light and benefited from year-round indoor climate control. Since founding Windowfarms in 2009, it has grown as a public mass collaboration and resulted in breakthrough technology for urban food growing and a virtual green product development lab of volunteer user testers and developers worldwide.
Zachary Pickens is an urban gardener, farmer, seed saver, Master Composter, and a full-time Farm Manager at the Riverpark Farm at Alexandria Center. Zach has worked on an urban farm and managed youth-run farmers' markets throughout Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx. He helped PS20 in Brooklyn design and implement a curriculum for a greenhouse education program and the eventual construction of a rooftop farm. Zach is a certified Master Composter and has also started Rooftop Ready Seeds, focusing on the development of a stock of vegetable seeds that are tailored to the unique climate of the city of New York.riverparkfarm.com