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Philosophy & Religion | Eating Green Panel & Keynote Speakers


Philosophy / Religion
Fax: 202-885-1094
Battelle Tompkins, Room 120

De Saint Felix, Chase
Senior Administrative Assistant

Philosophy / Religion
4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20016-8056

Panel: A Conversation about Food,
Consumption and Sustainability

10:00-11:30, SIS Founder’s Room

We welcome you to join us in listening to a diverse panel of food ethics enthusiasts whose interests cover issues like labor practices, local DC activism, health and marketing, energy politics, organic and local foods, identity politics, and ecological and social justice. It is our hope that this event will take shape as a conversation. Come prepared to have a dialogue, ask questions that are important to you, and consider how your relationship with food can be a catalyst for self-reflection.

Cameron Pedersen

Owner, Bending Bridge Farm

Cameron Pedersen owns and operates Bending Bridge Farm, a 100 acre USDA certified organic farm located in Hustontown, PA, together with his wife Audrey Fisher-Pedersen. Cameron and Audrey strive to fulfill what in their words is a "simple" mission: "we want to grow great produce, connect the community to our farm, and inspire healthy delicious meals."


Carina Gervacio

Program Coordinator, Brainfood

Carina Gervacio graduated from the University of Virginia in 2005 with a BA in Comparative Literature and Environmental Thought and Practice. Prior to joining Brainfood, Carina worked with several environmental non-profit organizations, including the Southern Environmental Law Center and, most recently, the League of Conservation Voters. Carina first gained experience with youth development as a volunteer for Migrant Aid, an English tutoring program for migrant youth and adults in central Virginia. Brainfood brings together two of her favorite things: food and working with high school youth.

Sonya Grier

Associate Professor, Marketing, American University

Professor Grier conducts interdisciplinary research on topics related to target marketing, race in the marketplace, the social impact of commercial marketing, and social marketing. Her current research investigates the relationship between marketing activities, and consumer health, with a focus on obesity. She has published her research in leading marketing, psychology and health journals. Professor Grier has policy experience based on two years at the Federal Trade Commission, and also has practical industry experience in Market Research, Brand Management and Marketing consulting. She serves on the Editorial Board for the Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, and the Advisory Boards for Transformative Consumer Research and the Villanova Center for Marketing and Public Policy. She also serves as a member of the Board of Scientific Counselors for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Center for Health Marketing.

Degrees: She received her PhD in Marketing, with a minor in Social Psychology, from Northwestern University and also has an MBA from Northwestern University, with an emphasis on marketing, non-profit mgmt and international business.


Kathy Mulvey

Policy Director, Community Food Security Coalition

Kathy Mulvey joined the Community Food Security Coalition (CFSC) as Policy Director in November 2010. CFSC is a national, non-profit coalition of diverse people and organizations working from the local to international levels to build community food security. CFSC is dedicated to catalyzing food systems that are healthy, sustainable, just and democratic by building community voice and capacity for change. Prior to joining CFSC, Mulvey served for more than two decades on the staff of Corporate Accountability International (formerly Infact), guiding dramatic growth in programs, budget and staffing during her 11-year tenure as executive director. She led the organization’s work in the United Nations system, much of it focused on the World Health Organization (WHO). Under her leadership, Corporate Accountability International’s campaign challenging Big Tobacco contributed to the adoption of WHO’s groundbreaking global tobacco treaty. Mulvey also lobbied in support of a WHO initiative promoting healthy diets and sustainable food security.


Simon Nicholson

Assistant Professor, School of International Service, American University

Dr. Simon Nicholson is a member of the global environmental politics faculty. His research and teaching focus on the politics of food and agriculture, global environmental and energy politics, and issues to do with emerging technologies. Dr. Nicholson also serves as a non-resident senior fellow at the Centro de Estudios Estratégicos Latinoamericanos (CEELAT) in Bogotá, Colombia, and speaks regularly in the United States and abroad about environmental action and the global food system.

Degrees: He received a PhD in International Relations from American University, and a LLM from the University of Waikato (New Zealand).


Keynote: Pleasure Once Removed: Eating, Suffering and Violence

11:45-1:15, SIS Founder’s Room

Lisa Heldke

Professor of Philosophy, Gustavus Adolphus College

Dr. Heldke’s expertise is in American philosophy, philosophy of food, feminist philosophy, and race theory. Her interests include thinking of food as a place where culture can be examined more generally, which aligns with the message of the ‘Eating Green’ Conference.

Dr. Heldke is committed to exploring the philosophical significance of food, a topic about which philosophers historically have had very little to say. She has published numerous articles, as well as a book, Exotic Appetites: Ruminations of a Food Adventurer. She has also coedited two books in this area: Cooking, Eating, Thinking: Transformative Philosophies of Food (Deane Curtin, coeditor) and The Atkins Diet and Philosophy, part of a series of books that explores popular culture using philosophy. Her current projects include an examination of the dichotomy between cosmopolitanism, on the one hand, and localism on the other, using the lens of “local food” as her focusing device; and an exploration of the question of how this liberal arts college can use food as a vehicle with which to realize its mission statement.

Degrees: She received her MA and PhD from Northwestern University.