Amanda Bradshaw-Burks, Movement Manager
Amanda transplanted to Evansville from northern Minnesota in 2009. She currently resides on the west side with her husband, three children, and a menagerie of rescued pets. Previous to her move she completed a bachelors of science at the University of Wisconsin – Stevens point, majoring in forest management and minoring in soil science. Decades spent working in the natural resources field helped to shape her view on the importance of food as a way to not only keep our bodies healthy but also our environment. With the addition of children to her family, one with extensive food allergies, the importance of the access to abundant, nourishing food really came into focus for her. She became aware of the barriers that can be present in the pursuit of gathering nutritious food and started doing what she could to help break those down. Amanda is very excited to be on the Urban Seeds team and to serve the community in a much deeper and meaningful way. Please do not hesitate to contact her if she can assist you in any way at firstname.lastname@example.org or 812-213-7241.
Robin Mallery, Director
Robin is passionate about food! As a full-time community volunteer, Robin is active in implementing programs that increase access to fresh, nourishing foods to those who are nutrient-insecure, thereby elevating the Food Justice conversation. Robin loves preparing cooked-from-scratch meals, shared with others around her own dining table or in cooking classes! As well, she is committed to supporting locally-grown, clean food as one of the many opportunities to create a vibrant local foods economy. Her professional experience as a cardiovascular and diabetes nurse provides the platform for her teaching a “Food as Medicine” philosophy. Robin is also active with the Healthy Communities Partnership initiative, sponsored by Welborn Baptist Foundation and Purdue Extension.
Tom Zeta, Nourish Coordinator
It is our pleasure to introduce Tom Zeta as the new Coordinator for the Nourish Community Food Buying Club. He grew up in Evansville and has recently returned with his wife after living in Bloomington for many years. He is excited and honored to be a part of the Urban Seeds team and to become more involved with the community.
Tom’s professional background is largely in the retail world, including working as Store Manager of Bloomingfoods Co-op and Deli for 7 years, but he has long desired to serve others in a deeper and more meaningful way. The opportunity as Nourish Coordinator will allow him to do just that while returning home to be closer to family and old friends.
He is a decent cook and due to some recent changes in his health, has become much more aware of the importance of the healing potential of food. He is also an artist (University of Evansville BFA class of 1990) and works in a variety of media, these days focusing primarily on ceramics and drawing.
Tom lives with his wife and, currently, no dog, but he hopes to change that once they become more settled. He looks forward to working with and getting to know Nourish members, local food suppliers, and Urban Seeds’ partner organizations in order to help build the bridge to good nutrition and a sustainable and healthy life for all.
Our Board of Directors
Casey Williams, Board Chair
Casey serves as a Community Wellness Coordinator for the Purdue Extension Nutrition Education Program, working to improve food access for low income families in Vanderburgh and Warrick County, as well as working to create policy, systems, and environmental change in a variety of healthy eating and active living initiatives. Casey previously worked in tobacco prevention and control with the non-profit Smokefree Communities, working to create smoke-free air policies and educating youth on various tobacco related issues. Casey has lived in Evansville for ten years and holds a B.S. degree in Advertising and Public Relations from the University of Southern Indiana and a Masters degree in Public Service Administration from the University of Evansville.
Tommy Housman, Vice-Chair
Tommy is a freelance Visual Communications Specialist and Artist at Tommy Art & Design. He is also an Adjunct Instructor at the University of Evansville. He is passionate about using art and design to make a difference in our community. Evansville has been home his whole life. While attending the University of Evansville he became aware of how serious of an issue access to fresh and healthy food is to some that live in our area. This is also when he discovered the unsustainability of our current food system which inspired him to become vegan in an effort to be more environmentally conscious. Tommy aspires to bring about positive change towards a more sustainable and inclusive food system. “If you want to make difference in the world start with your city, your community, and your neighborhood. My vision is to project balance, inclusion, social responsibility, empathy, and compassion into the world around me.”
Kathy McMurray, Treasurer
Kathy works part-time as an accountant at the Welborn Baptist Foundation. She is also a very active volunteer in the Evansville, Indiana community. She became acquainted with Urban Seeds through her work at Welborn and thoroughly supports its mission. She loves to plant flowers and was a Master Gardener. Kathy has lived in Evansville for 19 years, and resides on the North side with her husband, son, dog and cat. Kathy is excited to work with the Urban Seeds organization.
Blythe is a lifelong Evansville resident who currently lives with her husband and house full of rescued dogs and cats. Blythe is a freelance digital storyteller, assisting local businesses and nonprofits in creating their voice through social media, videos, and print graphics. Blythe’s interest in Urban Seeds evolved from her experiences living below the poverty line with a disability; and her calling to turn her past into a way of helping others in similar circumstances.
Serah is an Associate Professor of Nutrition in the Food and Nutrition Program at University of Southern Indiana. She is a Registered Dietitian and a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. She is also a member of the Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior. Her research focuses on food access, chronic disease, nutrition assessment and interventions among underserved populations.
Lorie Van Hook
Lorie serves as the Executive Director for the Evansville Trails Coalition (ETC) and describes herself as an advocate and life-long volunteer—for the past 7 years, she has worked to increase opportunities for our community to live healthy, active lives. Lorie is a graduate of the University of Evansville (UE), and she has personally adopted UE’s mission as her own, “to think critically, act bravely, serve responsibly, and to live meaningfully in a changing world.” Lorie’s passion is to support the initiatives that facilitate quality of life improvements for everyone. Places for active living and access to healthy, fresh foods provide a great quality of life foundation to individuals, families and people of all ages, young and old. Urban Seeds’ work to increase access to healthy, nourishing food is important to her because she has seen firsthand the challenges of family members and individuals in our community circles that experience the lack of opportunities and challenges of access to nourishing food sources. Through interrelations, partnerships and collaborations, Lorie believes that together we will have a profound positive impact in our facilitating a healthy, happy community.
Ashley serves as the Market Manager for Market on Main EVV, helping to connect our local growers and producers to the larger community of Vanderburgh Co. Ashley also serves as the lead instructor and owner of Wild Thing Yoga & Boutique, where she teaches that the most subtle of movements can create the biggest impact in our bodies and beyond. Most of her free time is spent in her kitchen creating nourishing meals, learning about herbal medicine, meditating, and growing an array of vegetables, flowers, and herbs. Her life’s focus is on educating others on how to be fully in-tune with their bodies and how to heal themselves through movement and food.
Bryan became acquainted with Urban Seeds volunteer opportunities through participating in a cooking class with friends at Thyme in the Kitchen. He supports Human Resources initiatives at OneMain Financial and in his spare time, enjoys the benefit of volunteering for an organization, like Urban Seeds, that promotes a wide array of nutritional programs to the community. As a vegetarian, he loves researching recipes and converting them into tasty and nutritious plant-based meals. Bryan holds a Master of Science from the University of Evansville in Public Service Administration and a Bachelor of Science from the University of Southern Indiana in Advertising and Public Relations. He has served on the Mayor of Evansville’s Substance Use Task Force and is a member of the Evansville-Area Human Resource Association. Bryan also has worked closely with organizations like Actors Theatre of Louisville and the Whole Plant Foundation through Whole Foods Market.
Lori was born and raised in Evansville, IN. She is passionate about quality of food, and health and wellness, believing that being in control of one’s health is achieved by being in control of the type and quality of the food we eat. Lori is dedicated to educating the community about food, nutrition, health and wellness, and she is just as passionate about feeding people as she is about education — a goal she successfully accomplished as the Family & Community Outreach Coordinator at Lincoln School until May, 2021. Lori is currently the Administrative Assistant at the Evansville African American Museum. As an avid gardener, she enjoys cooking and sharing her harvest with family and neighbors.