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Who we are


Hugh Acheson

Hugh Acheson is the chef/partner of the Athens, Ga restaurants; 5&10, The National, the Atlanta restaurant Empire State South, and the Atlanta coffee shop Spiller Park Coffee. Born and raised in Ottawa, Canada, he started cooking at a young age and decided to make it his career after taking a very long time to realize that academics weren’t his thing. At 15, he began working in restaurants after school. Acheson's experience includes working under Chef Rob MacDonald at the renowned Henri Burger restaurant in Ottawa, and in San Francisco as the chef de cuisine with Chef Mike Fennelly at Mecca, and later as opening sous chef with famed Chef Gary Danko at his namesake restaurant, where he found a love of the simple, pure and disciplined.

Almeta Tulloss

Almeta Tulloss studied design and communications at Georgia State University, performing in Atlanta and New York and utilizing Shakespeare to teach literacy in Atlanta public schools. She briefly managed Cafe Campesino's organic coffee bar in the Sweet Aurburn Curb Market before leaving Atlanta to work on sustainable small farms in rural north Georgia. While earning her B.S.C.F.S in Family and Consumer Sciences at the University of Georgia, she worked for the Athens Land Trust as the Local Food Coordinator doing farmer outreach in rural Georgia communities, and promoting farm to school education. Nutritious food and education are two of her greatest passions, and she someday hopes to be a lunch lady. 

Philip D. Lanoue

Philip D. Lanoue sat as superintendent of the Clarke County School District in Athens, Georgia from 2009-2016. He was the 2015 AASA National Superintendent of the Year, and the 2015 GSBA/GSSA Georgia Superintendent of the Year. His leadership experience transcended geographical regions and has included rural, suburban and urban settings. Under his leadership, the Clarke County School District was honored as a Title I Distinguished District for being Georgia’s #1 large district for closing the achievement gap between economically disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged students. In addition, all elementary and middle schools made 2010 Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP), the state’s measure of achievement under No Child Left Behind. Both Cedar Shoals High School and Clarke Central High School are Advanced Placement (AP) Honor Schools for the state of Georgia.

Curricula Writers

Lauren Healey

For more than 16 years, Lauren Healey has worked in the field of leadership development.  She has extensive experience in curriculum development, program design and delivery, and evaluation of both youth and adult programs for diverse audiences.  She also provides technical assistance to communities to help them in meeting their leadership goals. With her successful background in the management of and collaboration with community agencies, advisory groups, and volunteers she provides valuable technical assistance to community groups to help them in meeting their leadership goals.   Prior to joining J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development, she worked as a 4-H youth development agent in both rural and urban counties.  In this position, she was responsible for planning, implementing, and evaluating educational programs for youth ages 9-19.  She holds a MS Degree in Human Development and Family Studies from Auburn University; and a BS in Psychology from the University of Georgia.

Amanda Kapousouz

Amanda Kapousouz lives in Athens, Ga with her husband and two children. She is a fiddler, knitter, seamstress, bow repairer, teacher, and mother. Many creative pursuits have manifested into some pretty exciting careers! From professionally busking in the heart of New York City's subway system to teaching children on films, tv, and even a circus tour, she is always drawn to 'off the beaten path' work.

Amanda relocated from NYC to Athens, Ga to spend a few years performing, recording, and touring as “Tin Cup Prophette.” Over the last few years, however, she has had children and has rekindled her love for fiber and textiles.

Drawn to the idea of connection, Amanda seeks work that embodies this concept. From the individual (and literal) connection of stitch to stitch in knitting to the more abstract connection presented in her bow work, she loves discovering relationships. The bow work has provided a connection to all of her favorite things: music, art, science, math, history, and her appreciation for meticulous and precise hand work.

Carmen Pedersen

Carmen Pedersen, M.Ed., CFCS is a third-year doctoral student and graduate part-time instructor in Family and Consumer Sciences Education at Texas Tech University. She obtained her undergraduate degree in Family and Consumer Sciences Education from the University of Georgia and her master’s in Curriculum and Instruction at Valdosta State University; she has previously taught for 5 ½ years at the secondary level and 1 ½ years at the post-secondary level. Carmen is currently working on her dissertation and hopes to graduate in May 2018.

Rachelle A. Reed, Ph.D

Rachelle Reed holds a PhD in Exercise Physiology and is currently on faculty at the University of Georgia in the Health Promotion and Behavior. Her areas of interest include childhood obesity, weight management across the lifespan, and helping people move more often. She also is the lead teacher at the local Pure Barre studio, where she is able to share her passion of exercise with the Greater Athens community. When she's not at work, you can find her with her husband and their 2 dogs!

Lori Tiller

Lori Tiller is a public service faculty member at the J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development a unit of the Office of Public Service and Outreach at the University of Georgia, with a focus on leadership capacity building for nonprofit, youth, and community organizations, leadership development for underrepresented populations, and technical skills in evaluation design and group facilitation. She is the self-evaluation coach for the Georgia Youth Opportunities Initiative, she collaborates with many on-campus departments including the Peabody Awards to aid in their planning and implementation processes, and she works with a variety of nonprofit and community based organizations building not only their leadership capacity, but their governance processes, strategic planning, and volunteer management skills. Lori specializes in using technology along with traditional facilitation techniques to help groups process their strategic initiatives, come to consensus, and prioritize their goals moving forward. Lori currently facilitates Embark Georgia, a statewide network of higher education institutions supporting young people experiencing foster care or homelessness in their academic endeavors. Lori earned her master’s degree in nonprofit management from the University of Georgia’s Nonprofit Institute in 2007, and her bachelor’s degree in music education from UGA in 2001. She is a current Ph.D. student at the Institute of Higher Education at UGA.

Kasey Wood, M.Ed.

After completing her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Washington, Kasey served as Program Coordinator for UGA Extension and the National Center for Home Food Preservation (NCHFP). Supported by a grant from USDA-NIFA, Kasey's primary project was to put together a free publication,‘Put It Up! Food Preservation for Youth’. She then had the pleasure of co-creating a for-sale publication called ‘Preserve It and Serve It’ that is available from UGA Extension.

Kasey realized her passion for food while earning a B.S. in Health and Wellness Promotion from the University of North Carolina at Asheville. She took that passion with her to IslandWood where she delighted in teaching students about growing gardens, eating wild plants, and cooking in cob ovens while earning a Graduate Certificate in Education, Environment, and Community.

In 2015, Kasey joined the Georgia Leadership Institute of School Improvement (GLISI) staff as Project Manager.

Hope Zimmerman

Hope Zimmerman holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Work from Millersville University and a Master of Arts in Teaching Family and Consumer Sciences Education from the University of Georgia. She worked as an EFL teacher in Seoul, South Korea for three years. She will be entering her fourth year of teaching Family and Consumer Sciences at Clarke Middle School in Athens, GA.

“I love food. Food is culture, tradition, history, nourishment, and love. I teach because I want to help students learn to appreciate how wonderful it can be to know where food comes from, how to use it, and what it can do for our bodies.”

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