Staff and Board


See our current Board of Directors



In alphabetical order.

Marissa Alexander

Co-Executive director

Marissa is a registered dietitian who is passionate about anti-racism, food security, and equity. Living and working on the traditional and unceded territory of the Lheidli T’enneh, she has had the honour of working alongside 55 First Nations communities in northern BC. She is also privileged to be able to connect with many different peoples and communities through her anti-racism consulting work. In her very little spare time, she is working on her Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on equity and cultural studies. As someone who is thankful to be a part of many, often oppressed, communities she is always looking for opportunities to elevate voices and lived experiences. When she is not focused on social justice work, she likes to spend time with family, friends, and her dog Ru. You can often find her crafting or creating, and she tries to include humour in her work as much as possible.

Susan Alexander

Policy Advisor

Susan Alexander is a policy adviser at Food Secure Canada. As an international communications specialist, she has worked with NGOs, think tanks and news agencies.

Currently putting down roots in the Montreal food movement, Susan volunteers with Santropol Roulant and is a member of a collective garden in her neighborhood.

Afua Asantewaa

communities convenor

Afua Asantewaa is a Food Security Worker and Sustainable Farmer with over 10 years of experience working in under-served communities in Canada and Ghana. In Toronto, she began her work in food security with Afri-Can FoodBasket and eventually worked with FoodShare as the Senior Good Food Program and Community Engagement Coordinator. At FoodShare, Afua implemented Toronto’s pioneer produce Mobile Market and Public Health’s Grab Some Good subway produce markets. 

Ken Bejer

Communications coordinator, Coalition for healthy school food

Ken is the Communications Coordinator for the Coalition for Healthy School Food. Passionate about children’s rights, international relations and politics, he has been coaching badminton to young children at La Voie High School since the age of 17. While working with several students, he learned to adjust and adapt his communication style to guide students and, eventually, discovered a passion for communication.

He completed a bachelor’s degree in political science and a certificate in public relations from the University of Montreal. Before joining the Coalition, he was a public relations coordinator for YPR Canada and Sid Lee Montreal. He also worked as a Communications Assistant for the International Centre for the Prevention of Crime (ICPC) and he was a public relations, communication and social media intern for UNICEF Canada.

When is not working, he loves to play tennis, ride his bicycle and learn new languages.

Juliette Clochard

Communications Assistant

Juliette is the Communications Assistant for Food Secure Canada. Passionate about psychology and, more specifically, child psychology, she has been teaching young children since the age of 15. Over the years, Juliette has learned to adapt her communication style to the different personalities she meets and, in doing so, has discovered a passion for communication and finding ways to make crucial concepts easier to grasp. She completed a major in international business at Concordia University before working for several nonprofits and social impact companies. Juliette's major enabled her to pinpoint the values she seeks to advocate throughout her career. She has since worked and continues to work for organizations directly or indirectly linked to the development of the well-being of current and future generations.

Omar Elsharkawy

Program manager

Omar is a program manager, and focal point for equitable access to healthy, sustainable food at Food Secure Canada. At FSC, he is working on a collective, and participatory process to identify, analyse and document food systems approaches and innovations.

Omar holds a master’s in environmental studies (MES) In food system planning from york university, researching systematic, health and sustainability focused food system interventions. Prior to joining FSC, Omar has worked in both public and non-profit sectors in organizations ranging from local farmers’ markets to international agencies.

Omar is first generation immigrant to Canada. He lives in Toronto on the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat peoples.

Debbie Field

Coalition for Healthy school food coordinator

Debbie has been involved in promoting and improving school food programs for decades, starting when she was a child growing up in New York City where she participated in a free lunch program and loved the mash potatoes and meatloaf but hated the stigma of eating in the “free lunch” cafeteria.  When her children entered grade school she was instrumental as a parent activist in organizing a healthy hot lunch program at her children’s school and then advocating to the city of Toronto to fund student nutrition programs. Over her years as the Executive Director of FoodShare Toronto she and her colleagues were involved in developing innovative and sustainable student nutrition and school food literacy programs and the creation of the Coalition for Healthy School Food.

A social activist and globally recognized leader in the creation of a more socially just and environmentally sustainable food systems, Debbie is currently also a distinguished visiting practitioner with the Centre for Studies in Food Security at the Toronto Metropolitan University. Debbie’s passion for collective action and policy change is informed by her experiences as a community college instructor, union organizer and leadership in a variety of social movements.

Debbie’s accomplishments and influence in Canada's food movement are well known to us at food secure Canada. Her leadership and nurturing of innovative solutions to food systems challenges through community-based approaches are rooted in recognition of progressive policy change.  

Maya Lewis

Research and community convener assistant

Maya is the Research and Communities Convener Assistant at Food Secure Canada. She is currently working to complete her degree in Urban Geography and GIS at McGill University. Since early childhood, she has nurtured a passion for food and an affinity for maps, both of which she is now putting to work at FSC. Her past projects embrace artistic data visualization, including mapping and graphic design. With past experience as a chef and a community cook, she is delighted to make the transition from the kitchen to the office and to bring her commitment to anti-racism and decolonization to the forefront of the work she is doing. 

When she’s not at the office she can probably be found at home trying out a new recipe for her friends, or onstage doing musical theatre or dance.

Danie Martin

Coordinator, collectif québécois, coalition for healthy school food

Danie is the Coordinator of the Collectif Québec for the Coalition for Healthy School Food.

She completed a major in communications at université du québec à Montréal (UQAM) followed by a certificate in community action at Université de Montréal. Since pre-university college, where she was the greenhouse activity leader, Danie has always been a firm believer that food is the center of human interactions. Her work as a community development officer in New-Brunswick ignited her interest for community-based work and citizen initiatives. While at university, she was involved in grassroots student-lead projects around local food and social ecology with the public interest research group, which led her to work as co-coordinator of uqam’s farmers market. 

Fairly new to the food movement across Canada, she has endless appetite to discover more initiatives and projects. Cyclist amateur, Danie is an outdoor lover.

Wade Thorhaug

co-executive director

Having grown up on a farm in southern Saskatchewan, Wade (he/him) has always been passionate about where our food comes from. After graduating from the University of Calgary (BSc Hons) he spent a number of years abroad working in education, and upon returning to Canada he took up residence in Iqaluit, Nunavut. There he gained a newfound appreciation for the diversity of local food systems in Canada, in particular long-standing yet threatened indigenous approaches to land management. As president and later Executive Director, he was instrumental in vastly expanding the activities and impact of Qajuqturvik Community Food Centre. He was also deeply involved in a number of other non-profit and community initiatives, including the creation of the Nunavut Association of Non-Profit Organizations. As an advocate he has made numerous appearances before media and multiple levels of government to push for a more dignified and equitable approach to increasing food security, stronger regional food sovereignty, a dismantling of colonial food systems, and improved health of communities through good food. Newly based in Montreal, Wade is eager to get involved in the urban food movement while working towards change on a national level.