Strategy Committee

The Strategy Committee reviews progress towards SAFSF’s emerging and longer term strategic goals, provides feedback on evaluation and metrics, and helps project and plan for funding resources necessary to achieve priority strategic goals. 

For information about serving on the Strategy Committee, contact Executive Director Virginia Clarke.

Tim Crosby
Thread Fund

Tim Crosby leads the Thread Fund that focuses on investing multiple forms of capital to generate social and environmental returns alongside financial returns. Tim is Coordinator of the Cascadia Foodshed Financing Project, participant in the Global Alliance for the Future of Food, founding board member Partners for Rural Washington, and a partner with Social Venture Partners. Tim’s previous work includes Co-Chair for the Sustainable Agriculture and Food System Funders, Director of Slow Money Northwest, Board Chair for the Washington Sustainable Food and Farming Network, Board Chair and Interim Executive Director for NW Sustainable Energy for Economic Development, Program Officer and Trustee for the Carolyn Foundation, and fifteen years as a professional photographer and graphic designer. Tim coached club soccer for eleven years and lives in Edmonds with his wife and two daughters. He holds an MBA in Sustainable Business from Pinchot University and a BA in Anthropology from Kenyon College. Tim will talk fly fishing with anyone.

Jonathan Halperin
The Marcus Foundation

JONATHAN J. HALPERIN is founder and president of Designing Sustainability, a strategy consultancy, in addition to serving as the head of external affairs at Greyston, with responsibility for strategy, communications, development and digital assets . He has more than 25 years of experience in nonprofit and commercial organizations such as SustainAbility, Ltd., Resources for the Future, and FYI Resources for a Changing World. He is also a trustee of The Marcus Foundation. In collaboration with international executives, nonprofit leaders, public officials, and creative media producers, he designs and executes projects to drive systemic changes in thinking and behavior. Recent projects include research and design of communications on agricultural risk with The World Bank, creation of with Participant Media to dispel myths about hunger in America, and design of TeachFood! at Mundo Verde PCS – which brings celebrity chefs to an inner-city school in Washington, DC. His strategic communications work includes development of campaign platforms for documentary films, including Hope in a Changing Climate and A Place at the Table.

Janie Simms Hipp
Native American Agriculture Fund (NAAF)

JANIE SIMMS HIPP, J.D., LL.M. is a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma. She serves as the CEO of the Native American Agriculture Fund, the nation’s largest philanthropic fund focusing solely on the needs of Native farmers and ranchers. She also served in an immediate prior position as the founding director of the Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative at the University of Arkansas School of Law. Janie served in the Obama Administration as the senior advisor for Tribal relations to USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, and prior to her appointment within the Office of the Secretary she served in the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA, as the National Program Leader for farm financial management, risk management education, trade adjustment assistance,and the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program. She also served at USDA Risk Management Agency as the Risk Management Education Director. Before her work in Washington, D.C., at the national level, she experienced a domestic and international career spanning more than thirty-five years in the field of agriculture and food law and has worked alongside the Intertribal Agriculture Council for more than twenty years. She has managed more than $500m+ in grant portfolios to date and has been a licensed attorneyin Oklahoma since 1984; she specializes in the intersection of food and agriculture law and Indian law. She has been recognized as distinguished alumni at her LL.M. alma mater, University of Arkansas and as distinguished alumni at her J.D. alma mater, Oklahoma City University; received the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award from former President Barack Obama for her national commitment to volunteer service; and most recently received the National Center for American Indian Economic Development’s 2017 Tim Wapato Public Advocate of the Year Award.

Carol Pickering
Dietel & Partners – Chair

CAROL PICKERING joined Dietel Partners in 2009 after a career path that took her through business and technology journalism and food businesses. Carol is responsible for various client program areas, working most closely with Tory Dietel Hopps and Ren Dietel. Carol started her career as a business reporter at The Writing Company in Portland, Maine in 1995 and later joined the editorial boards of Forbes ASAP and Business 2.0 magazines as staff writer. In 2001, Carol left the world of technology journalism to join a startup food company. After selling the business in 2006, she joined another food business that closed its doors in 2009. During this time, Carol became active in Maine’s value-added food industry, where she helped start the Maine Food Producers Alliance, a nonprofit business association for Maine’s food producers. Carol joined Dietel Partners in 2009 as aprogram assistant, and is currently a program officer in the Maine office. She is a trustee of the Pickering Foundation in Salem, Massachusetts, a foundation dedicated to preserving and promoting the history of the Pickering House and family. Carol is a graduate of the University of Puget Sound and Holderness School. She lives in Portland, Maine with her husband and two children.

Mikki Sager
The Conservation Fund

MIKKI SAGER is vice president of The Conservation Fund, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing environmental stewardship and sustainable economic development. In her work with the Fund’s Resourceful Communities program (RC), Mikki helps communities implement triple bottom line efforts that promote sustainable economic development, social justice and environmental stewardship. Resourceful Communities provides capacity-building assistance and small grants to help communities implement triple bottom line efforts; helps over 550 partner grassroots groups connect with each other across country; and helps communities implement place-based economic development projects, including ecotourism and community forestry, that leverage environmental techniques and resources. Resourceful Communities partners are increasing access to healthy food and active lifestyles for vulnerable populations in the South and Appalachia, and are advancing a national initiative focused on leveraging conservation tools and resources to advance community food sovereignty. RC has distributed over $6 million in small grants and helped partner organizations create over 2,000 jobs in urban and rural communities alike. Sager is a graduate of The Pennsylvania State University with a Bachelors degree in Health and Physical Education.

Mailee Walker
Claneil Foundation

MAILEE WALKER became executive director of the Claneil Foundation in 2007. Prior to joining the Claneil Foundation, she was vice president, communication/program officer of the Wells Fargo Regional Foundation. Mailee serves as a board member of The Philadelphia Award. She serves on the Strategy Committee of the Sustainable Agriculture and Food System Funders (SAFSF) and an advisory board member of The Center for Hunger-Free Communities. She is a member of the Forum of Executive Women, Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy, and Asian Mosaic Fund Giving Circle. Mailee earned a BA in urban studies from Stanford University and an MBA in change management from the Wharton Graduate School of Business. She is an alumna of the Coro Fellows Program, the Center on Philanthropy’s Jane Addams Fellowship, and Leadership Philadelphia.