The board of directors is responsible for leading the Co-op and guiding the organization. They have been elected by the member-owners to act on their behalf. The board is committed to absorbing the membership’s needs and wants and making the best decisions for the organization as a whole.
The last elections were held at the General Membership Meeting on Wednesday, May 25, 2016. The board currently numbers 13 positions. Seven of those positions are up for election in even-numbered years; the remaining six are up for election in the odd-numbered years. Terms begin at the July board meeting and ends at the June board meeting.
Jessica Calter – President (current term ends June 2018)
Jessica has been a proud resident of South Philadelphia since 2010 when she returned to the neighborhood of her grandparents now called Dickinson Square West. An active member of her South Philadelphia Community, Jessica serves as the Board Treasurer for the Friends of Manton Street Park and Community Garden, and is a member of the Finance Committee of the Dickinson Square West Civic Association. Jessica is also a member of the Board of Directors of Good Company Ventures, a next level social impact accelerator. As a board member of the South Philly Food Co-op Jessica serves on the Real Estate and Operations Committees. Professionally, Jessica has over a decade of experience in non-profit management with expertise in strategy, fundraising, and marketing. She currently oversees strategic communications in economic development as the Director of Marketing Communications for PIDC. Previously as the Director of Institutional Advancement at Arden Theatre Company, Jessica managed the $5.8 million capital campaign and expansion into the new Hamilton Family Arts Center. Jessica holds an MBA from Smeal College of Business at The Pennsylvania State University and a BFA in Drama from Syracuse University. Jessica enjoys having fun in the community with her husband Mike and neighbors and friends.
Angel D'Ippolito, Vice President (current term ends June 2018)
Angel D'Ippolito has called South Philly home since 2002. She grew up in Boyertown, PA and moved to Philadelphia after graduating from the Dickinson School of Law at Penn State University. Angel is a real estate and business attorney, a child advocate, and a lover of plants, music, cake decorating, photography, travel, animals, friends, and family. She is a co-chair of the South Philly Food Co-Op Real Estate Committee. In that role, she has enjoyed the extensive search and challenge of finding the perfect grocery store space. Angel also serves as the Vice President and director for the Passyunk Square Civic Association where she chairs the outreach committee and Neighborhood Ambassador Program. She lives with her wonderful husband, Mike, their dog, Macho, and their cat, Knuckles. Without question, Angel's favorite aspect of living in South Philly is the band of community focused neighbors also living there.
Anna Kisiel – Treasurer (current term ends June 2018)
Anna Kisiel has lived in Philadelphia for a total of 7 years. She originally moved to the city shortly after she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Business and Economics from the University of Pittsburgh. Since then, she moved closer to her family in Harrisburg, PA only to find herself back in Philadelphia in 2009 with an 8-month old son, a new job, and a goal of obtaining her MBA at Drexel University. She moved to South Philly in 2010 when she moved into her row home that, though small, is filled with lots of character. Anna has always been driven to volunteer in the community and immediately felt drawn to help out with the South Philly Food Co-op when she heard about it through Weavers Way which she met through work. Anna works as an Analyst at PNC Bank where she works with numerous commercial clients. She hopes that her finance and business experience will be particularly helpful during the Co-op’s startup phase so that once it opens its doors, it will continue to operate as a lucrative business.
Matt Stern, Secretary (current term ends June 2018)
Originally from the suburbs outside New York City, Matt's first Keystone city was Pittsburgh, where is he attended undergrad. In 2009, he moved from Washington, DC to Philadelphia to attend graduate school in the area. Philly’s strong communities and prideful, honest residents were an immediate relief from DC’s transience and politics. Upon graduation, he chose Philadelphia as his home and South Philly as his neighborhood even though it wasn’t the “default” or “easiest” option. He has not regretted the decision for a moment since. Matt manages a program that improves the energy efficiency and comfort of Philadelphia homes and see his day-job and the Co-op as part of the same effort to make Philly a more resilient and sustainable city -- one household at a time. In his free time Matt enjoys cycling around the city, backpacking in the woods and traveling throughout the world. It is honor for him to represent the South Philly Food Co-op’s members and serve on the board.
Nathaniel Cauldwell (current term ends June 2017)
Nat had been a lifetime New Yorker until 2011 when he moved to Philly with his wife, son, and two cats. After renting for a year in East Passyunk Crossing, his family found a house to buy around the corner from the rental and has since added another son and a dog to the family. Nat continues to work as the systems administrator/network engineer/web developer for the small manufacturing company on Long Island that hired him right out of college, although the commute has become much better since he now works from home. Aside from spending time with his family, Nat enjoys using his talents for the good of the community, which is how he got involved with the South Philly Food Co-op. Answering the call for “Database Dorkery” help, Nat assisted with the migration to the co-op's current CRM system and has since helped reboot the IT committee. Nat also volunteers his technical know-how to the Philly Free School where his eldest son is currently enrolled.
Alison L. Fritz (current term ends June 2018)
Originally from Southampton, NY Alison Fritz moved to Philadelphia in 2002 to join AmeriCorps VISTA for a post at Simon Gratz High School working with inner-city youth. Since then, she has worked for several regional non-profits and moved from education and program development into the fundraising arena, most recently as a grant writer for WHYY then as Associate Director of Donor Relations at Fox Chase Cancer Center and now as the Director of Development at The Philadelphia School. Alison was introduced to the co-op movement during her first years in Philadelphia as a member of Weavers Way. She moved to the Passyunk Square neighborhood with her husband Dan Pohlig in 2008 and was instantly drawn to the community building efforts through her civic association. In April 2010, Alison convened a meeting about establishing a co-op, and together with her new friends and neighbors, helped found the South Philly Food Co-op initiative. Alison served as president of the board from its inception in 2011 until June 2015. She is a member of the Operations and Outreach committees.
Jose Garcia (current term ends June 2017)
Jose grew up in Bensalem and left to attend Philadelphia University (back when it was called Philadelphia College of Textiles and Science), which he graduated with an architecture degree. He finally travelled far enough on I-95 in 2005 when he made his home in South Philly. He makes his living as an architect, and he added his skills to the Coop Real Estate Committee in 2013 shortly after becoming a member-owner with his wife Erin. In addition to tending his verdant potted garden in his "yard," Jose enjoys all Philadelphia sports and playing tennis. Jose is most excited about showing off the Co-op's future bricks-and-mortar to his 1-year-old Susie, who is already a discerning eater of his delicious Filipino home cooking!
Leigh Goldenberg (current term ends June 2017)
Originally from the Philly burbs, Leigh moved to South Philly from New York in 2007 with her husband Aaron. She chaired the Co-op’s Program and Events Committee from 2012-2014, including oversight of two Garden Tours and dozens of other recruitment and engagement events. In her life outside of the Co-op, Leigh is director of marketing for Wash Cycle Laundry, a sustainable laundry service that delivers by bicycle and creates jobs for vulnerable adults. Prior to joining the social enterprise community, she worked in non-profit theatre for a decade, in both New York City and Philadelphia across various offstage roles. Here she eventually found a focus in communications and engagement, most recently at Arden Theatre Company. Leigh is an active volunteer with the Friends of Kirkbride Elementary, the neighborhood school her daughter Tilde will attend starting in 2020. She continues to consult for arts organizations, hold season tickets to the Phillies no matter how terrible the season, and ride a tandem bike with her husband around town.
Carolyn Huckabay (current term ends June 2017)
In 2006, Carolyn picked Philadelphia on a map of the U.S., packed up her belongings and headed north from Virginia to explore a new city and lay down some roots. After a short stint in Fitler Square, Carolyn moved to South Philadelphia in 2008 with her now-husband, Brian Howard, and couldn't be happier to have found such a welcoming, bustling community to call home. When she's not attempting to grow various veggies in her back-patio garden, tending to her lovably dense cats, trying a new East Passyunk restaurant or cooking soup, Carolyn spends her days as the communications manager for The Food Trust, a national nonprofit healthy food access organization based in Philly. Combining her love for creative writing and editing with a passion for food justice is also what makes her fit right in at the South Philly Food Co-op: Carolyn comes to the board after having co-chaired the Co-op's Marketing and Communications committee for two years. In her free time, she likes coming up with clever hashtags, proofreading restaurant menus and hanging out with her neighbors — who have their own block-wide Facebook page — on her South Philly stoop.
Emily Kohlhas (current term ends June 2017)
Produce guru by day, epicurean by night, and anthropologist every minute in between, Emily has many hats, each a different color. Her career has taken her from radio broadcast studios and backstage green rooms to magazine editorial lofts and academic publishing caves to executive board rooms and hiring offices to houses of cheese and bastions of culinary vegan-dom to Michelin-star kitchen gardens and local farms to school cafeterias and international produce hubs with titles as varied as the settings themselves. But no matter where Emily finds herself, she is always driven by one foundational goal: to make people think about what they consume, where it comes from, and who made it possible for them to have it – not to mention explore those questions herself! That’s why when Emily moved to South Philadelphia several years ago, she was thrilled to learn that a group of like-minded individuals had already amassed. Since day one as a South Philly Food Co-op member Emily has been an active member of the Events Committee, organizing educational programs for Co-op and community members. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to lead the Co-op into its next phase of development and cannot wait to sell (and buy!) that first vegetable.
Dana Mitchell (current term ends June 2017)
Dana was born and raised in South Jersey, and always enjoyed visiting Philadelphia for school trips and family adventures. After moving around a bit in the early aughts, Dana finally settled on South St in 2005. From there she continued to move deeper into South Philly, experiencing the charm of the Graduate Hospital, Devils Pocket, Point Breeze, and Girard Estate Neighborhoods, the latter which she now calls home. Dana graduated from Temple University in 2012 with a degree in Environmental Studies. She did her internship with the South Philly Food Co-op, and helped start the Shop South Philly Program. After graduating, Dana became an official member of the Co-op, and continued to volunteer with the Outreach Committee, eventually becoming the Committee Chair in February of 2015. Dana is passionate about all things outdoors and is an avid rock climber, and feels that food is the deepest connection we have to our environment.
Katy Travaline (current term ends June 2018)
Katy and her husband joined the Co-op and started volunteering at tabling events in 2012. Passionate about spreading the word, she has served as the Speakers Bureau Manager since 2012 and on the Outreach/Member Services Committee since 2015. Katy was particularly active in helping to coordinate the Co-op’s 2015 Garden Tour. Katy is deeply committed to, and has years of experience in, community outreach, including partnership building and maintenance; planning and managing events; fundraising; program awareness; and volunteer recruitment efforts. Involved in food and environmental issues in the City of Philadelphia for the last decade, Katy brings a wealth of relevant knowledge and the ability to connect to city residents, government officials, businesses, and non-profit organizations. Having taught college courses, such as 'Sustainable Food Systems' and 'Cities and Sustainability,' Katy has sought out food producers and distributors as well as city officials and brought them to the classroom. Katy enjoys using her skills in research, writing, and community outreach, particularly when it is in the name of food and environmental justice. As a Co-op board member, Katy represents South Philly as a whole, and brings much-needed representation to residents west of Broad Street.
Emily Wyner (current term ends June 2018)
Emily went to her first South Philly Food Co-op general membership meeting four days after moving to the neighborhood. From that point on, she knew this was an organization to which -- and with which -- she was deeply dedicated. Coming to the table (all puns intended!) with passionate experience in food justice organizing, Emily felt energized to join forces with a community of neighbors who share a common vision: to open a member-owned, cooperative grocery store that makes good food available at a fair price to the residents of South Philadelphia. Emily joined the Marketing and Communications Committee in summer 2014 and served co-Chair before joining the board. Outside of the Co-op, Emily works at a large public health institute, where she leads mission-driven business integration initiatives and has honed her skills in strategic, organization-wide thinking and planning.