Susannah FotopulosFounder, Director
Susannah Fotopulos is the founder and director of Plant the Seed. She sees sowing, preparing and sharing food as a powerful tool for starting cross-cultural conversations and growing together in community. Susannah grew up on a 72-acre farm in rural Tennessee, where her family raised a 3-acre vegetable garden and shared bountiful harvests with neighbors, learning early the important role fresh food plays in building community. She entered the nonprofit world as an AmeriCorps member and started an award-winning service-learning program for children ages 4-12 at Hands On Nashville. She believes everyone has a right to fresh, affordable, culturally-relevant foods and that young people are capable of effecting meaningful change in their diet, their lives and their communities.
Sarah VoterOperations Manager
Sarah has lived in the 12 South neighborhood for nearly twenty years. Growing up in a rural area, she had the opportunity to learn about growing her own food from an early age. She has owned several businesses in the food industry over the years, in addition to her work for local and corporate natural foods stores. She has also served as the Operations Manager for a number of local businesses. Sarah’s guiding passion in her work is to bring safe, sustainable, natural foods to her local communities. Her favorite thing about working with Plant the Seed is the opportunity to help children connect to their food and its origins.
Morgan FlorsheimGarden Education Facilitator at Ross Early Learning Center
Originally from Milwaukee, WI, Morgan is passionate about connecting students to the land and to their food. Prior to joining Plant the Seed, she studied Environmental Science at Brown University and then spent a year serving as an AmeriCorps member with the Cumberland River Compact. Morgan loves that as a Garden Education Facilitator at Ross Early Learning Center, she gets to help grow the next generation of environmental stewards. She hopes the students are learning as much from her as she is from them! When not in the garden she enjoys writing, running, and rock climbing.
Kim NewbouldGarden Education Facilitator at Rosebank Elementary School
Kim received her Bachelors of Science degree in Integrated Studies with concentrations in both Agribusiness and Administration. In joining Plant the Seed, she is committed to finding ways that will help people in need within her community, and to do what is within my reach to make things better in the world around us. Kim has worked various seasonal gardening jobs over the years, and has always had a passion for plants, including having her own personal gardens and greenhouse at home. She has been teaching her young son how to garden since he was a baby.
Hannah Fletcher-PageGarden Education Facilitator at Cambridge Early Learning Center
Hannah Fletcher-Page comes to Plant the Seed with a lifelong love of growing and creating collaboratively. With a background in Theatre and youth development, she believes in sharing and creating a better collective narrative in our schools, homes and communities. When we can work to teach children how to grow things and care for themselves and others we are building that better story together. Hannah grew up gardening and farming with her parents and grandparents. When she got the chance to start growing a garden with her own daughter she renewed that connection to her heritage and the soil. Hannah wants to help ensure that future generations will have this access to ancestral knowledge to build healthier and more connected communities. She is excited to be facilitating at Cambridge Early Learning Center in the richly diverse Antioch area.
Dargan EleyGarden Education Facilitator at Davis Early Learning Center
Dargan Eley joins our team with over ten years of teaching experience in elementary and middle school Spanish. She grew up in Golden, Colorado, where she became interested in cultivating a lifelong appreciation for nature and the outdoors. She enjoys the numerous and tangible benefits that come from a "rain or shine" attitude towards being outside. Part of this love is experienced through travel, and enjoying new foods from beautiful cultures. In the last five years Dargan has merged her passions and has gained a new hobby in gardening. She has an appreciation for the entire process; from learning about what grows well to sowing the seed to harvesting the ingredients for a meal shared with friends and family. She is excited to share that enthusiasm with her students.
Brenda HuffProgram Manager
Brenda grew up surrounded by apple orchards in the Finger Lakes region of New York. A love of nature and outdoor activities are passions she’s carried along with her through her career in education for 34 years. Having worked as a classroom teacher, administrator, and service-learning director, Brenda’s role as Program Coordinator combines her interests and experience as an educational leader. Plant the Seed’s mission resonates with her love of experiential learning, as well as her commitments to cultivating caring community and practicing environmental sustainability. She brings a joy - and finds joy - in being on the PtS team cultivating wonder!
Avi KatzmanProgram Manager
Avi found her way to Nashville after living on the east coast for many years where she honed her skills as an artist, farmer, and experiential educator. Her background in the visual arts led her to a love of working with plants and helping others connect to themselves, their community, and the earth. She worked for many years as lead farmer and program director at the first Jewish farm-to-table summer camp located in upstate New York. It was there she got to dive deep into her roles as steward, facilitator, and space holder. She truly believes that all people can benefit from the power of learning through play and exploring and nurturing their own unique creativity.
Melia ArnoldPartner-Facilitator at Explore! Community School
Melia has been an advocate and supporter of Plant the Seed since it’s seedling days, serving on the founding board through 2018. Melia has a long history as a trainer and facilitator, as well as extensive experience in program development and management with non-profit and national service organizations. Her work with diverse teams of youth and adults in service-learning and leadership development led her back to this hands on role in the garden. Melia believes that when kids are encouraged to dig in the dirt, experience the natural magic of growing a plant by hand and nurturing it into an edible product ensures their connection to the land and their learning, while better connecting them with one another. She is reminded daily, of the joys and wonders of the outdoor world through the eyes and hands of her 5 and 7 year old.