Aleen Carey, Board Chair, has spent a decade as a Spanish teacher in the public school system, spending six years in northern Virginia, and four years at Monticello High School in Albemarle County. She is motivated as an educator and as a board member by seeing what can happen when a young person takes what she has learned in the classroom and applies it to her own life. As a former educator, she is excited about sharing her professional experience with that of farmers, gardeners, restauranteurs, and community members to build something that positively informs the lives of Charlottesville youth. Aleen is a graduate of Albemarle County Schools and James Madison University.

William Lanzana, Board Treasurer, is originally from NY and has lived in Charlottesville since 2011. He has 20 years of progressive financial, accounting and related systems experience and works for a consulting firm designing software implementations. He is currently involved with the Future Fund, The Boy & Girls Club and Sojourners church and can be found cooking at various fund raising events around Cville.

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 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 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.

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.

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.

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.


Meet our City Schoolyard Garden Staff