Jeff Allen is the former brewmaster of Stone City Brewing Company, late of Solon, Iowa, where he still resides with his wife, Sal. Tim Rask was one of the first regular patrons at the brewery, and served as unofficial activities director. Jeff and Tim hope to turn the story of Stone City Brewing into a book someday.
Renee Brincks (reneebrincks.com) is a Decorah native and freelance journalist who covers food, travel and lifestyle topics. A former Des Moines Register reporter, she has also written for The Iowan, ReadyMade, Carmel Magazine and additional publications nationwide. Renee splits her time between Northeast Iowa and San Francisco, where she grows green peas in window boxes.
Stephanie Catlett lives, eats, drinks, sleeps, thinks, creates, and dreams in Iowa City. In her free time, she enjoys reading, staring at trees, whispering hopeful words to her plants, and playing her guitar.
Rob Cline is the marketing director for The University of Iowa’s Hancher Auditorium. He is also the founding president of the Iowa Cultural Corridor Alliance and an active freelance writer. He lives in Cedar Rapids with his wife Jenny and his children, Bryan, Jessica and Emily.
Fifth-generation Iowan Susan Futrell comes from a family with roots in farming, and has lived in Iowa City since she was old enough to vote. She spent 25+ years in marketing and sales with a locally-based organic foods distributor, and is now a freelance writer and sole proprietor of One Backyard, providing writing, marketing and research on sustainable food systems. She also works part-time for Red Tomato, a Boston-area nonprofit supporting small fruit and vegetable farmers. She has an MFA in nonfiction writing from UI, and her current ambition is to someday bake a perfect apple pie.
Eugenia E. Gratto lives and writes in Iowa City. She moved to Iowa in September 2005 from the Washington D.C. area, where she sang in a rock band, divided her loyalties between the Washington Nationals and the Baltimore Orioles, and once paid $18 for six heirloom tomatoes at a farmer’s market. Shortly after she arrived in the Midwest, she decided it was high time she learned how to grow her own tomatoes. She chronicles her adventure in gardening, cooking, and living in Iowa on her blog, The Inadvertent Gardener, which can be found at TheInadvertentGardener.com
Jennifer Hemmingsen planted her first garden when she was four years old and even though they’re not glamorous, johnny jump ups are still her favorite flower. When not digging in the dirt, she’s a freelance writer in Iowa City.
Brandi Janssen – Brandi Janssen left her family’s farm in the Missouri Ozarks for Grinnell College, and has considered Iowa home ever since. Currently working on a PhD in Anthropology, she studies the ways local food producers in Iowa find and apply the many sources of knowledge available to them. Her previous research examined how the engagement of media and non-profit organizations in local food efforts affects Community Supported Agriculture producers. She resides, eats, and enjoys life in Iowa City with her husband, Marc, and daughters, Maia and Lucy.
Brian Morelli is a journalist who covers university news for the Iowa City Press-Citizen. A recent University of Iowa graduate, Morelli has a major in journalism and minor in political science. Prior to writing, Morelli traveled for several years primarily in the U.S. and Canada, and he cooked professionally at several restaurants across the country, most recently at Devotay. He currently resides in Iowa City with his wife and two children.
Criss Roberts, a Chicago native, married into an Iowa farm family. She lives in Burlington, where she is feature editor of the Hawk Eye, and writes for other publications and websites. She is also a contributor to EssentialIowa.com
Mallory Smith is a native of Iowa City. She has a BA in Home Economics from the University of Iowa and an MBA from Western Illinois University. Her interest in food and business has led to a variety of noteworthy jobs including Peace Corps Volunteer, Guest Services Director for the Kellogg Center for Rural Development in Honduras and Deli Manager at New Pioneer Co-op. Smith owns and manages M Smith Agency, a business that helps clients such as Practical Farmers of Iowa-Buy Fresh, Buy Local, Eulenspiegel Puppets and Midwest Community Development Institute to develop and market their services. Smith lives in West Liberty with her husband Jose and three sons: Erik, Tony and Diego.
Leah Wilson is the Coordinator for the Johnson County Local Food Alliance ( JCLFA), a new organization fostering a more sustainable food system in Johnson and surrounding counties. JCLFA brings the Buy Fresh Buy Local campaign to Johnson County and coordinates Field to Family. (jclfa.org) Leah is currently working on her master’s thesis in Geography at the University of Iowa, focused on the sustainability of the University of Iowa food system. At home, Leah engages in freestyle, haphazard, micro-scale farming adventures. When not interrogating mystery plants in her garden, she can probably be spotted out in the pasture, cavorting and carrying on with her 3 dairy goats, heritage poultry and 2 organic, free-range children.