Faculty Inspiration

Below are two faculty members from the Program in Nutrition at Teachers College Columbia University who have inspired and supported the Center for Food & Environment.


Eating Locally and Sustainably
As early as 1972, when Dr. Joan Dye Gussow began teaching a course called Nutrition Ecology that she has taught every year through 2010, she pioneered the call for food systems to be local and sustainable. This was followed with the publication of her landmark book, The Feeding Web: Issues in Nutritional Ecology in 1980. She served two terms on the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine, beginning in 1984, and the Organics Standards Board from 1995-1999. These early activities inspired the work of the Center for Food and Environment. Dr. Gussow continues this focus on changing policies and food systems through her teaching, board memberships, presentations at conferences, and books.


Procuring Local Food for our Nation’s Schools
In the 1990s, Dr. Toni Liquori created the CookShop™, a now beloved preK-grade 2 food education program in New York City. It is run out of the FoodBank of New York City. Her current project, School Food FOCUS (transforming Food Options for Children in Urban Schools), is a national initiative that supports large school districts (those with 40,000 or more students) in their efforts to redirect food purchasing toward healthy, local, and sustainable vendors. procure more healthful, more sustainably produced, and regionally sourced food. According to the W.K. Kellog foundation that supports FOCUS, “School Food FOCUS is a national initiative designed to enable meal programs in large, urban school districts to redirect food purchasing toward healthy, local and sustainable vendors. It addresses a critical need to surround children where they learn and play with the food they need to thrive, while playing a pivotal role in anchoring regional food systems.”