Our Board Members are the driving force behind our long-range planning and roots in the community.
Cultivate Charlottesville BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Andrea Ruedy Trimble, Board Secretary is the Sustainability Director at the University of Virginia and has led higher education sustainability initiatives for over a decade. Andrea holds degrees in architecture, historic preservation, and environmental management and prior to joining UVA, managed Harvard University’s sustainable building program, taught courses in design and sustainability, and worked in architecture, historic preservation, and sustainability consulting fields. As a the parent of two young children who are enthusiastic about CSG’s programs, Andrea is excited about becoming increasingly involved and invested in the opportunities that CSG provides, to grow hands-on educational opportunities for the youth of Charlottesville.
Wendy Baucom, Board Co-Chair grew up in Richmond but spent 20 years in North Carolina before moving back to Virginia. While doing a Master’s in Urban Planning at the University of North Carolina, she worked on a project studying farm-to-school opportunities, which sparked her interest in school nutrition. When she moved to Charlottesville, she connected with a few others and started a Facebook group called Parents for Healthier Foods at CCS to promote discussion and share information about school food and wellness in the city schools. As a parent of five kids, she has been involved in a wide variety of school settings and has also worked as a restorative justice volunteer and a teacher at an alternative school. Currently she tutors at the WALK program at Charlottesville High School.
Crystal Beasley, Board Co-Chair joined the Board in the fall of 2017 but her relationship with City Schoolyard Garden far exceeds that through her role as AVID Site Coordinator at Walker Upper Elementary. Crystal has been with the Charlottesville School District for over 20 years and has been engaged with a number of the schools across the district. Although her role throughout the district her passion for teaching has stayed constant. She loves being active; whether out for a hike with her 10 year old German Shepard, Cisco, or going to the gym. She and her family are members of the Antioch Baptist Church.
Rachael Boston joined the board in 2020. A member of the staff at UVA, Rachael is a manager in the Ophthomology Department. She learned about Cultivate from current Board member Kimberlee, and was excited to join the team to move Charlottesville towards being a system of food equity.
Kimberlee Daniels was born and raised in Philadelphia, PA and has spent most of her 24 years as an Administrator in the Health Care field in the Mid-Atlantic Region. Kimberlee relocated to the Charlottesville area in 2017 to work for University of Virginia Medical Center. With a strong desire to immediately connect with the community, Kimberlee saw CSG has the perfect opportunity to marry her love of business and health care with her passion group of young people. CSG provides young people with the ability to become empowered as entrepreneurs as they learn to manage the gardens; learn valuable lessons regarding food equity and justice, as well as become exposed to new fruits and vegetables; improve quality of life by learning techniques to incorporate nutritious foods in the diet; and ultimately reap the health benefits of developing a lifestyle of eating healthy.
Matt Darring, Board Treasurer grew up in Mobile, Alabama. He fell in love with gardening during a high school field trip to Monticello in the early 1990s. A dozen years later he moved to Charlottesville with his wife Jodi. In December 2012 he started as the garden coordinator at Burnley-Moran Elementary (fittingly with a commanding view of Monticello), and continued to develop the garden program there for five years. Environmental stewardship, garden-based education, self-reliance, racial equity, and food justice are deep seeded values and beliefs for Matt, and CSG helps him act on those values and beliefs. CSG is a family affair for Matt. His wife was a Harvest of the Month volunteer for several years at Burnley-Moran Elementary and more recently at Johnson Elementary. His daughter and son have both benefited from garden-based education at Burnley-Moran and Johnson. His daughter was a Garden Aide for the fall semester of 2019 at Buford. Having an organization like CSG in Charlottesville is such a treasure, one that Matt is very thankful for. He and his family are happy to do what they can to give back and help to grow CSG.
Dan Fellows and his wife Katie moved to Charlottesville from Dallas, Texas in April of 1990 to settle down and raise their family. Dan is currently managing partner for The Fellows Group Incorporated, a full service marketing/advertising agency. He has an MBA from George Mason University and 40 years of experience in business, which gives him a strong background in general business management. Dan has been an executive in a large corporate environment, a General Manager of a regional family owned (not his) retail enterprise and owned his own companies. A believer in giving back to the community Dan is past President of the local chapter of the American Marketing Association. Previously, he was the founding board member and pro-bono business manager for Virginia Basketball Academy (VABA) a youth sports non-profit organization that emphasizes character development. A life-long gardener, Dan is excited to support the mission of the CSG.
Paul Freedman (Ph.D. University of Michigan) is Associate Professor in the Department of Politics at the University of Virginia, where he serves as Associate Department Chair. Freedman teaches courses in public opinion, media and politics, voting behavior, research methods and the politics of food. He is a founding member of the UVA Food Collaborative, the recipient of the University of Virginia Alumni Board of Trustees Teaching Award, and served as the first Edward L. Ayers Advising Fellow. Freedman is co-author of Campaign Advertising and American Democracy (Temple University Press). Freedman currently serves as Academic Director of the Morven Summer Institute, sits on the board of the Jefferson Institute, and is a senior scholar at the UVA Center for Politics. Since 2000, Freedman has been an election analyst for ABC News in New York.
Margie Gilbert has lived in Charlottesville for the better part of two decades; She is a restaurant manager, non-profit development professional, and an avid home gardener. Since graduating the University of Virginia, she has worked on the staff of Charlottesville’s Department of Neighborhood Development Services, interned with the UVA Center for Politics and served as Creative Media and Technology Director at Eloise. As Marketing & Development Director of the Firehouse Theatre Project in Richmond, Va., she specialized in community engagement, event planning and fundraising, volunteer coordinating and grant writing. She grew up in the restaurant industry, and is currently the bookkeeper and manager of local eatery Continental Divide. She is excited to fuse her passions for gardens and good food into the development of a stronger, more sustainably-minded community.
Neal Halvorson-Taylor grew up in a rural Minnesota town that was surrounded by small family farms. He remains committed to bringing agriculture into the lives of townies. To that end, he directed the Urban Agriculture Project (now called the Urban Agriculture Collective of Charlottesville). Neal is Senior Advisor for Sustainability at Morven Farm at the University of Virginia and on the programming team that manages the Morven Summer Institute, the Morven Kitchen Garden, and the Young African Leaders Initiative. He is ordained in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and currently serves as vicar of Grace Church, Red Hill, an ecumenical community in the Episcopal tradition.
Audrey Oliver joined the board in 2020. Audrey is a Charlottesville native who came up through the CCS school system. Audrey sits on three boards including: Public Housing Association of Residents, Charlottesville Redevelopment and Housing Authority, and Cultivate Charlottesville. She has children and grandchildren spread throughout Richmond and Charlottesville. She is excited to join the Cultivate team.
Daisa Granger Pascall is a Charlottesville Native, whom graduated from Monticello High School in 2008. In 2012 she returned home from the University of Kentucky, Lexington, with a Bachelors of Art in Studio Art. Daisa was grateful to be part of the amazing team at Clark Elementary as the Afterschool Site Director for the past five years. During that time she designed multiple clubs, utilizing partnerships with several outside organizations. One of these resulted in the Gardening Club, which was supported through CSG. In August of 2019 Daisa started her new career as the second art teacher at Walker Upper Elementary School. Daisa is very passionate about her community and the people who are part of it.
Sober Pierre joined CSG’s Board in July 2015 and is co-owner of Pearl Islands Foods. He attended the Darden School of Business at University of Virginia and specialized in entrepreneurship and general management. Sober is also an engineer and brings many skills to his role on the Board. His Pearl Island Foods catering company was created to promote the Haitian culture through sharing its delicious cuisine and they can be found at the Charlottesville farmers market on Saturdays downtown.
Juandiego Riccardo Wade grew up in Richmond, VA. He spent his early summers with five siblings at their grandparent’s home maintaining a garden. He attended Norfolk State University for undergraduate and the University of Virginia where he got a Masters in Urban and Environmental Planning. He was employed for nearly 20 years as the County of Albemarle Transportation Planner and now is a Career Counselor for the County. He has served on the City of Charlottesville School Board since 2006. He is married to Claudette Grant and they have a daughter at Charlottesville High School.