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Our Team

Our team works together in support of our mission to Help Other People Eat.

Julie Brunson

Executive Director

Kathy Bego

Garden Educator

Sarah Samosiuk

Garden Manager / Educator

Andrea Shingledecker

Garden Educator

Holly Smith

Lead Teacher

Debi Whelan

Program Manager

Joshua Usadel

Garden Tech/Assistant

Angie Bruder

Garden Tech/Assistant

Sean Ferguson

Fund Development Coordinator

Angela Violet

Accounting/Human Resources

Join Our Team

Meet Our Founders

The mission to help other people eat is personal for H.O.P.E. Gardens Founders Rich and Julie Brunson, who each experienced food insecurity problems early in their lives.

In 2014, gardening became a more prominent part of the couple’s life. While he was recovering from a concussion, Rich found solace and comfort in their backyard garden. Around the same time, the couple learned about regenerative gardening. Though they had always tended a garden, it wasn’t very successful — until they tried the regenerative approach.

As a result of these experiences, Rich and Julie felt compelled to offer hope to people struggling to get enough food and teach them a sustainable way to feed themselves.

There is a great opportunity to bring beauty and change into our local communities, and it can be realized in something as small as a seed in the hand of a child.- Julie Brunson- Executive Director

The couple established H.O.P.E. Gardens in 2015.

Meet Our Board

Our board of directors are supportive community advocates that represent a variety of professions and are committed to helping children and community members grow their own food.

If you would like to contribute your time and talents to the H.O.P.E. Gardens Board of Directors, we would love to hear from you!

Regan Gibson

Sarah Chatterly

Rich Brunson

Julie Brunson

Amiya Haywood

Ken Kolker

Jeannette Pollatz

Renee TerBeek

Kerri Zeiler

Sandy Bergh