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, with a goal of making the best possible decisions for the organization as a whole.
Elections for the Board of Directors take place at our spring general membership meeting each year. Each member is elected to serve a two-year term, which commences at the July Board meeting following elections. The Board is composed of anywhere from 9 to 13 positions; up to seven of those positions are up for election in even-numbered years, and up to six are up for election in odd-numbered years.
MEET THE BOARD
Leigh Goldenberg - President (current term ends June 2021)
Originally from the Philadelphia suburbs, Leigh moved to South Philly from New York in 2007. She chaired the Co-op’s Program and Events Committee from 2012-2014, including oversight of two Garden Tours and dozens of other recruitment, fundraising, and engagement events. Outside of the Co-op, Leigh is the Executive Director of Theatre Philadelphia, the region’s marketing and audience development organization for theatres. Previously, she was Director of Marketing for Wash Cycle Laundry, a sustainable laundry service that delivers by bicycle and creates jobs for vulnerable adults. Also in Philadelphia, she has held positions at Arden Theatre Company, Lantern Theater Company, and provided consulting services to a host of mission-driven organizations. Leigh chairs the Friends of Kirkbride Elementary, is in the 2017 Class of Leadership Philadelphia’s Connectors and Keepers, and was a member of the 2016 Class of Philly Girls Do Good, which celebrates women leaders in community development. She holds a degree in Theatre Production and Management from Marymount Manhattan College. Her writing has been featured in Philly Love Notes and Spoke Magazine, and she’s appeared on ABC’s The $100,000 Pyramid and the DIY Network’s Kitchen Impossible. Leigh is the proud owner of a South Philadelphia row home that has a garage filled with bicycles she rides with her husband and daughter.
Jessica Calter - Vice President (current term ends June 2020)
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. 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 has served on the Real Estate and Operations Committees. Professionally, Jessica has over 15 years of experience in nonprofit management with expertise in strategy, fundraising and marketing. She currently oversees strategic communications in economic development as the Vice President 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, daughter, neighbors and friends.
Angel D'Ippolito - Treasurer (current term ends June 2020)
Angel planted her roots with her now-husband in South Philly in 2002. She is a real estate and business attorney licensed in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, currently working in the Law Department at Amtrak. She earned an MBA with a focus on executive management from the Fox School of Business at Temple University in June 2017. Prior to arriving at Amtrak in 2015, Angel was a partner in the boutique law firm of Sherman, Silverstein, Kohl, Rose & Podolsky in Moorestown, NJ. She served as a judicial law clerk in the New Jersey State Judiciary post-graduation from the Dickinson School of Law at Penn State. In South Philly, Angel previously served on the Board of Directors of the Passyunk Square Civic Association, holding the positions of Vice President, Treasurer, and the Chair of the Outreach and Events Committees. She also serves as a volunteer attorney with the Support Center for Child Advocates, where she earned the Distinguished Advocate honor in 2016. Driven by a challenge and a love for the South Philly community, Angel joined the South Philly Food Co-op’s real estate committee in 2012, becoming the co-chair of that committee. She joined the Board of Directors of the Co-op in 2014 and became the Vice President and the Chair of the Facilities Committee in 2016.
Emily Wyner, Secretary (current term ends June 2020)
Emily moved to South Philly in 2014, went to a general membership meeting for the Co-op four days afterward, and hasn't looked back since. She is the founding partner of Humblebee, a consulting shop focused on capacity building, expansion, and sustaining positive work cultures in mission-driven organizations. Emily spent her early professional years in women’s and public health. As the first-ever Business Integration Manager at Public Health Management Corporation (PHMC), she led change initiatives across 200+ community-facing programs and 2,000+ employees with the aim of more effectively wrapping services around each unique client. Emily also served on PHMC’s workplace wellness committee, through which she developed and taught workshops on mindfulness and wellbeing. She holds a master's in organizational development and leadership from Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, a bachelor's in anthropology from Tufts University, and a certificate in applied positive psychology from The Flourishing Center. An improv school graduate, Emily brings a playful approach to the work she takes seriously: creating and sustaining a more just world.
Mita Banerjee, Board Director at Large (current term ends June 2021)
Originally from the Lehigh Valley, Mita has lived in Philadelphia for 7 years, 5 of which have been spent in South Philly. She bought a house two years ago in South Philly, just a few blocks from the Co-op. She has been a member of the South Philly Food Co-op since 2017 which is important to her because it encompasses a community of members who strive to bring fresh, local and sustainable food to our neighborhood. Mita believes that co-ops are essential to providing a cozy neighborhood place where neighbors can get environmentally health conscious products at an affordable price. Mita is a Data Analyst at AmeriHealth Caritas, with a background in biology (Lafayette) and computer science (Rutgers). She has been in the field of software quality assurance for over 20 years with an emphasis on health care analytics. She has two daughters, one soon to be doctor and one who is a middle school teacher. Outside of work she loves to go on long walks with her dog Rocky, and enjoys practicing yoga and playing the piano. She also is an active member of an all women of color book club. Mita likes to be involved in her community by hosting block parties and participating in Philly clean-up days. She will be coordinating tabling initiatives for the South Philly Co-op from now on to help spread the word of the Co-op and its mission. With all this in mind she wants to sustainably contribute to the evolving community of the South Philly Co-op through engagement and inclusiveness.
Jen Herczeg, Board Director at Large (current term ends June 2021)
Jen Herczeg moved to Philadelphia from New York in 2006 and currently resides in Bella Vista with her husband and 2 year old son. She received a BA in Communication from Villanova University and later an MBA in Marketing and International Business from Temple University. She also holds a Baking and Pastry Arts degree from the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City. Jen has worked in the food and beverage industry for over 15 years for some of the world’s top brands - Starbucks Coffee Company, Whole Foods Market, Chipotle Mexican Grill and local foodie icon, Di Bruno Bros. - before founding Philly Food Collaborative, a network of consultants and freelancers to support small and emerging food brands in Philadelphia grow to the next level. She also supports marketing and social media for Edible Philly magazine and enjoys volunteering with several local women’s organizations. Jen has been active with the Co-op on and off for several years and previously served on the Operations and Marketing and Communications Committees and co-chaired the latter for a time. She is eager to contribute to the Co-op and her South Philly community in this new role on the Board.
Chad Hooper, Board Director at Large (current term ends June 2021)
Chad moved to South Philadelphia in 2016 and settled in East Passyunk Crossing after falling in love with the city’s food scene. He is proud to live on the coolest block in South Philly and has a multitude of incredible neighbors. One of them, former board member Carolyn Huckabay, got Chad involved in the Co-op and he came aboard as our 1,000th member-owner in 2018. Chad works for the federal government and leads the Treasury’s quality analysis function. He also instructs transformational leadership courses for new and current managers throughout the nation. Chad is the National Vice President of the Professional Managers Association, an organization which represents federal managers nationwide and works with agencies and the Congress to improve the federal workforce. Prior to joining the civil service, Chad was a program director for a community health center and worked with several nonprofits, shelters, and the local food co-op to organize a comprehensive safety net for 25,000 indigent patients living with chronic or terminal illnesses. After studying at the University of Hawaii, the University of Montana, and New England College, Chad holds a master’s degree in forensic accounting and a bachelor’s degree in economics. Chad splits his free time between baking for his husband, Max, and overparenting their two cats, Derpy and Crinkles.
Eliza Kinsey, Board Director at Large (current term ends June 2021)
Originally from upstate New York, Eliza has lived in the Passyunk Square neighborhood of South Philadelphia since 2014. As a member of the South Philly Food Co-op, she serves on the Food Justice and Equity Committee and joined the Board in July 2019. Eliza is a public health researcher, who has published extensively on food insecurity, nutrition disparities and diet-related chronic disease. She has worked on issues related to local food access and federal nutrition assistance programs for more than 10 years and is passionate about making healthy food available to all. Prior to her research career, Eliza worked on several organic farms, managed an urban farmers’ market and worked on local food policy issues with the Baltimore Food Policy Initiative. Currently she is completing a postdoctoral fellowship at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. She is also a Lecturer at Jefferson University’s College of Population Health. Eliza holds both a PhD in City and Regional Planning and a Master’s in Public Health from Penn. In her free time, Eliza enjoys baking, reading novels and exploring the woods with her husband and their mostly well-behaved dog, Remy.
Anna Kisiel (current term ends June 2020)
Originally from Harrisburg, PA, Anna has lived in Philadelphia for 11 years, over 7 of which have been spent in her Pennsport home that she shares with her boyfriend and two sons. Anna has a bachelor’s degree in business and economics from the University of Pittsburgh and her MBA with a marketing concentration from Drexel University. In her professional career, she has worked in finance, operations and marketing. The majority of her career was spent in the banking industry, which allowed her to work with many for-profit and nonprofit businesses in the greater Philadelphia area, including Weavers Way, which encouraged her to get involved with the South Philly Food Co-op. Before joining the Board in 2015, Anna volunteered on the Operations Committee for several years. Anna is passionate about food, thinks that food helps bring people together, and is excited to strengthen the South Philly community through the Co‑op.
Marquis Tavon Upshur (current term ends June 2021)
Born and raised in South Philadelphia, Marquis currently works as the Vice President of Human Resources for Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC), Philadelphia’s premier economic development agency. As Vice President of Human Resources, Marquis leads efforts to attract, develop and retain the talent needed for PIDC to expand its reach and impact, including all hiring, training, and professional development. He has more than 15 years of experience managing human resource programs support for both for-profit and non-profit employers. Prior to his role with PIDC, Marquis served as the Vice President of Human Resources for Philabundance, where he lead human resources programs and operations planning for the nonprofit food bank. Marquis earned a bachelor’s degree from Albright College, a master’s degree from Duquesne University, and a MBA from the University of Phoenix. He is also a licensed Insurance Producer in the State of Pennsylvania, and spends most of his free time with his partner of 8 years and their puppy, Lilyrose.
FAREWELL AND THANK YOU TO OUTGOING DIRECTORS:
Nathaniel Cauldwell - Secretary (term ended June 2019)
Nat had been a lifetime New Yorker until 2011 when he moved to Philly with his family. He continues to work as the systems administrator/network engineer/web developer for the small manufacturing company on Long Island where he’s been working since 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.
Carolyn Huckabay, At-Large Director (term ended June 2019)
The intersection of food justice, community engagement and the neighborhood she calls home brought Carolyn to the South Philly Co-op community -- first as a volunteer with the Marketing and Communications Committee, then as that committee’s co-chair, and now as a member of the Co-op’s Board of Directors. Originally from Bethesda, MD, Carolyn earned her bachelor’s degree in English from Mary Washington College (now the University of Mary Washington) and has lived in Philadelphia for over a decade, working in journalism and public relations. She currently runs the Communications department at The Food Trust, a Philadelphia-based healthy food access nonprofit organization. She lives in East Passyunk with her husband, daughter and two cats.
Tanya Seaman, At-Large Director (term ended June 2019)
Tanya moved to Philadelphia from San Francisco to get her master's in City Planning at Penn, with an interest to help get people out of their cars and onto public transit and bicycles. Soon after graduating, she created her dream job by co-founding and running PhillyCarShare, which enabled about 50,000 people to give up their cars, including the City of Philadelphia. Tanya launched the effort to create the Grays Ferry Triangles, a highly popular plaza that is now the center of activity in the Graduate Hospital neighborhood. Alongside this, she worked with residents in both Graduate Hospital and Center City to engage with Children’s Hospital to accommodate the neighborhood during its planning phases. While on the Zoning Committee, Tanya started the Economic Development Committee and an interactive website to market the neighborhood to new and expanding businesses, as a way to reduce the propensity to develop corner, mixed-use properties into all-residential buildings. Currently, Tanya has resumed the leadership role of the Safety Committee, in an effort to address street safety for all users. As a consultant, Tanya works with small businesses to create efficient business practices using various technologies. She uses this nerd-dom to write knitwear patterns, to enable other hand-knitters to replicate her unique designs.