Experts

Our staff is made up of experienced nonprofit leaders, campaign strategists, chefs, Registered Dietitians and nutrition educators, public health professionals and other experts in their field.

To contact one of the experts below, please email us at cookingmatters@strength.org.


Chef Megan Bradley, RD
Metro Program Manager, Cooking Matters Colorado

Expertise: culinary, nutrition, sustainable food, community programming

Chef Megan Bradley, RD, is the Metro Program Manager for Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters program in Colorado. Part of the national No Kid Hungry campaign, Cooking Matters empowers low-income families with the skills to shop smart and cook healthy meals. The program has served more than 120,000 participants over 20 years through hands-on education in the kitchen and at the grocery store.

Megan oversees the implementation of Cooking Matters hands-on cooking courses in the metro Denver area and works to expand the quality and reach of the program throughout the area. Previously, as a Cooking Matters coordinator, Megan taught and facilitated 46 courses reaching 574 families in Denver.

Megan is a member of the Denver Sustainable Food Policy Council and helped co-found the Produce for Pantries Collaboration. Before joining Share Our Strength, Megan cooked in restaurants across the U.S.

Megan holds a degree in Culinary Nutrition from Johnson & Wales University and is a Registered Dietitian.  She loves gardening and has a passion for making sure all people know how to cooking healthy delicious food on a budget. She lives in Denver, CO.


Chef Ellen Damaschino
No Kid Hungry Center for Best Practices

Expertise: culinary, volunteerism, national program implemetation

Ellen Damaschino is the National Field Manager for Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters. Part of the national No Kid Hungry campaign, Cooking Matters empowers low-income families with the skills to shop smart and cook healthy meals. The program has served more than 120,000 participants over 20 years through hands-on education in the kitchen and at the grocery store.

Ellen provides direct support, mentorship, technical assistance, resource development and strategic guidance to Cooking Matters course partners that implement the program’s hands-on cooking courses.

A Cooking Matters culinary volunteer before joining Share Our Strength, Ellen was inducted into the Cooking Matters Hall of Fame in 2008, which honors volunteers who have taught 15 or more courses. Ellen also received Share Our Strength’s National Community Leadership award in 2009. Ellen served on the Taste of The Nation Portland volunteer committee for five years and continues to serve her community as a volunteer chef instructor for Cooking Matters. Ellen is a member of Women Chefs and Restaurateurs and the American Culinary Federation and regularly presents at culinary conferences across the country.

Before joining Share Our Strength, Ellen held positions with the Oregon Food Bank, owned the company Neat LLC and has more than 20 years of experience in the restaurant business, including work as a pastry chef in Europe, work in restaurants both on the east and west coast and as chocolatier.

Ellen holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of California, Davis and a Culinary Certificate in Baking and Pastry from Diablo Valley College Culinary Arts Program.

When not traveling, canoeing or volunteering, she enjoys canning the bounty from the small fruit orchard surrounding her farmhouse in Portland, Oregon.


Leigh Ann Edwards, MPH, RD
National Program Operations Director, Cooking Matters

Expertise: nutrition, public health, food security, national program implementation

Leigh Ann Edwards, MPH, RD, is the National Program Operations Director for Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters. Part of the national No Kid Hungry campaign, Cooking Matters empowers low-income families with the skills to shop smart and cook healthy meals. The program has served more than 120,000 participants over 20 years through hands-on education in the kitchen and at the grocery store.

Leigh Ann’s oversees partnerships, training and technical assistance provided to Cooking Matters course partners around the country. In this role, she has more than doubled the number of Cooking Matters course partners.

Leigh Ann was appointed to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Public Health Task Force, and served as a volunteer reviewer for the Academy’s expiring position paper Food Insecurity in the US. She is an invited memberof the committee to develop Standards of Practice and Standards of Professional Practice for Registered Dietitians in Public Health Nutrition. Ms. Edwards received the University of North Carolina’s Gilling School of Public Health Department of Nutrition’s Outstanding Alumnus for 2008 – 2009. She was also selected as the 2010 Emerging Leader for the North Carolina Dietetic Association.

Before joining Share Our Strength, Leigh Ann held positions with the public affairs firm N Chapman Associates, Inc. and the business consulting firm Accenture LLP.

Leigh Ann, a registered dietitian, holds a Master’s in Public Health from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and a Bachelor of Arts in Interpersonal Communications from North Carolina State University. She lives in Charlotte, N.C.


Chef Alicia McCabe
Director, Cooking Matters Massachusetts

Expertise: culinary, food security, social innovation, community programming

Chef Alicia McCabe is the Massachusetts Director for Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters. Part of the national No Kid Hungry campaign, Cooking Matters empowers low-income families with the skills to shop smart and cook healthy meals. The program has served more than 120,000 participants over 20 years through hands-on education in the kitchen and at the grocery store.

In Massachusetts Alicia oversees all aspects of implementing the Cooking Matters program, including fundraising and communications.  Under her leadership for the last six years, the number of families reached has increased 500%, the budget has tripled, and the program has expanded statewide.  In 2012, Alicia was selected by Root Cause’s Social Innovation Forum as a Social Innovator.

Prior to joining Share Our Strength, Alicia cooked at Icarus and Ashmont Grill in Boston, built wooden boats in Maine, cooked at a Benedictine Monastery in California, and ran a Southern California soup kitchen serving over 3,000 meals a week.

Alicia holds a degree in Theology from Loyola College in Baltimore and a culinary certificate from Boston University. She lives in Cambridge, Mass., with her husband and young daughter.

Experts

Our staff is made up of experienced nonprofit leaders, campaign strategists, chefs, Registered Dietitians and nutrition educators, public health professionals and other experts in their field.

To contact one of the experts below, please email us at cookingmatters@strength.org.


Chef Megan Bradley, RD
Metro Program Manager, Cooking Matters Colorado

Expertise: culinary, nutrition, sustainable food, community programming

Chef Megan Bradley, RD, is the Metro Program Manager for Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters program in Colorado. Part of the national No Kid Hungry campaign, Cooking Matters empowers low-income families with the skills to shop smart and cook healthy meals. The program has served more than 120,000 participants over 20 years through hands-on education in the kitchen and at the grocery store.

Megan oversees the implementation of Cooking Matters hands-on cooking courses in the metro Denver area and works to expand the quality and reach of the program throughout the area. Previously, as a Cooking Matters coordinator, Megan taught and facilitated 46 courses reaching 574 families in Denver.

Megan is a member of the Denver Sustainable Food Policy Council and helped co-found the Produce for Pantries Collaboration. Before joining Share Our Strength, Megan cooked in restaurants across the U.S.

Megan holds a degree in Culinary Nutrition from Johnson & Wales University and is a Registered Dietitian.  She loves gardening and has a passion for making sure all people know how to cooking healthy delicious food on a budget. She lives in Denver, CO.


Chef Ellen Damaschino
No Kid Hungry Center for Best Practices

Expertise: culinary, volunteerism, national program implemetation

Ellen Damaschino is the National Field Manager for Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters. Part of the national No Kid Hungry campaign, Cooking Matters empowers low-income families with the skills to shop smart and cook healthy meals. The program has served more than 120,000 participants over 20 years through hands-on education in the kitchen and at the grocery store.

Ellen provides direct support, mentorship, technical assistance, resource development and strategic guidance to Cooking Matters course partners that implement the program’s hands-on cooking courses.

A Cooking Matters culinary volunteer before joining Share Our Strength, Ellen was inducted into the Cooking Matters Hall of Fame in 2008, which honors volunteers who have taught 15 or more courses. Ellen also received Share Our Strength’s National Community Leadership award in 2009. Ellen served on the Taste of The Nation Portland volunteer committee for five years and continues to serve her community as a volunteer chef instructor for Cooking Matters. Ellen is a member of Women Chefs and Restaurateurs and the American Culinary Federation and regularly presents at culinary conferences across the country.

Before joining Share Our Strength, Ellen held positions with the Oregon Food Bank, owned the company Neat LLC and has more than 20 years of experience in the restaurant business, including work as a pastry chef in Europe, work in restaurants both on the east and west coast and as chocolatier.

Ellen holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of California, Davis and a Culinary Certificate in Baking and Pastry from Diablo Valley College Culinary Arts Program.

When not traveling, canoeing or volunteering, she enjoys canning the bounty from the small fruit orchard surrounding her farmhouse in Portland, Oregon.


Leigh Ann Edwards, MPH, RD
National Program Operations Director, Cooking Matters

Expertise: nutrition, public health, food security, national program implementation

Leigh Ann Edwards, MPH, RD, is the National Program Operations Director for Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters. Part of the national No Kid Hungry campaign, Cooking Matters empowers low-income families with the skills to shop smart and cook healthy meals. The program has served more than 120,000 participants over 20 years through hands-on education in the kitchen and at the grocery store.

Leigh Ann’s oversees partnerships, training and technical assistance provided to Cooking Matters course partners around the country. In this role, she has more than doubled the number of Cooking Matters course partners.

Leigh Ann was appointed to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Public Health Task Force, and served as a volunteer reviewer for the Academy’s expiring position paper Food Insecurity in the US. She is an invited memberof the committee to develop Standards of Practice and Standards of Professional Practice for Registered Dietitians in Public Health Nutrition. Ms. Edwards received the University of North Carolina’s Gilling School of Public Health Department of Nutrition’s Outstanding Alumnus for 2008 – 2009. She was also selected as the 2010 Emerging Leader for the North Carolina Dietetic Association.

Before joining Share Our Strength, Leigh Ann held positions with the public affairs firm N Chapman Associates, Inc. and the business consulting firm Accenture LLP.

Leigh Ann, a registered dietitian, holds a Master’s in Public Health from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and a Bachelor of Arts in Interpersonal Communications from North Carolina State University. She lives in Charlotte, N.C.


Chef Alicia McCabe
Director, Cooking Matters Massachusetts

Expertise: culinary, food security, social innovation, community programming

Chef Alicia McCabe is the Massachusetts Director for Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters. Part of the national No Kid Hungry campaign, Cooking Matters empowers low-income families with the skills to shop smart and cook healthy meals. The program has served more than 120,000 participants over 20 years through hands-on education in the kitchen and at the grocery store.

In Massachusetts Alicia oversees all aspects of implementing the Cooking Matters program, including fundraising and communications.  Under her leadership for the last six years, the number of families reached has increased 500%, the budget has tripled, and the program has expanded statewide.  In 2012, Alicia was selected by Root Cause’s Social Innovation Forum as a Social Innovator.

Prior to joining Share Our Strength, Alicia cooked at Icarus and Ashmont Grill in Boston, built wooden boats in Maine, cooked at a Benedictine Monastery in California, and ran a Southern California soup kitchen serving over 3,000 meals a week.

Alicia holds a degree in Theology from Loyola College in Baltimore and a culinary certificate from Boston University. She lives in Cambridge, Mass., with her husband and young daughter.