Healthy Food Denver's Kids Commission

In the summer of 2019, the Denver Office of Boards and Commissions selected the first members for the Healthy Food for Denver’s Kids Commission (HFDK Commission), following the legal establishment of the initiative and fund. The HFDK Commission was created to advise and review the distribution, effectiveness and impact of tax funds and other funds allocated to the initiative. The HFDK Commission is appointed by the Mayor of Denver through the Denver Office of Boards and Commissions and administered by the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment (DDPHE). Members serve terms of three years.

The HFDK Commission consists of 13 members, including:

  • Three members of the mayor’s cabinet, or staff of city departments, appointed by the mayor
  • Two members of the City Council, approved by the City Council
  • Four residents of the city, appointed by the mayor
  • Four representatives of city-wide organizations or institutions engaged in food related activities, each appointed by the mayor

Members should represent wide systems knowledge in food, gardening, youth development, non-profit administration, public health, grant-making, and business development. Appointed commissioners should reflect the geographic, demographic, socioeconomic, and ethnic diversity of the City and County of Denver. Commissioners must live or work in the City and County of Denver, be willing to disclose any potential conflicts of interest, and serve without compensation.”

Agendas, Presentations, and Minutes

Click here to access and view previous agendas, presentations and minutes.

Commission Members

View the roster(PDF, 111KB) of the current commission members, including term lengths and demographic makeup


Austin Locke Headshot Austin Locke

Austin Locke currently serves as the Donor Relations Manager for Warren Village in Denver, CO. Over the last decade, he has spent a majority of his professional time working with stakeholders to connect them to their passions and to improve the lives of families with a focus in nonprofit and higher education sectors. Austin’s recent work in the food insecurity space and homeless/houselessness initiatives inspired him to become a Commissioner for Healthy Food for Denver's Kids. A graduate with a degree in Political Science with an emphasis in Economics and Public Policy he enjoys staying up to date on current events and policy. In his spare time he can be found reading a good book, connecting with friends, and visiting family.  



Diana Romero HeadshotCouncilwoman Diana Romero Campbell

Diana Romero Campbell is your Denver City Council District 4 representative. Diana grew up in southeast Denver, where her and her husband raised their daughter and son who are now young adults. She is a Denver Public School alum from Jefferson High School, a returned Peace Corps Volunteer, and has spent her career working in the nonprofit sector. Diana’s career has been dedicated to ensuring that all children, youth, and families have access to the same opportunities that she and her family have enjoyed, and thus why she wanted to serve on the HFDK Commission. Her advocacy for early care and education, youth development, and Out-of-School-Time program and family support has anchored her values in community.  Diana understands at her core that change happens when you listen to all voices, treat everyone with respect and dignity, lift up people who have been historically marginalized, and follow the data as well as your heart. One thing Diana enjoys most is hanging out at her mom's house by Bible Park with family or walking the Highline Canal or Cherry Creek trails.

 


Giselle Díaz Campagna headshot Giselle Díaz Campagna

Giselle is the Executive Director at The GrowHaus, a Denver nonprofit dedicated to cultivating community-driven food justice through education and food access. She is a veteran nonprofit leader, multicultural social equity promoter, fundraiser and social justice program developer. She has held executive management appointments at various local and national non-profit, media, healthcare and higher education organizations. Giselle’s lifelong passion for food justice and children’s causes fuels her volunteerism and work with local organizations to promote sustainable food systems programs for youth. When she is not out tending to her vegetable garden, Giselle explores life as a yoga teacher, creative writer, art student and social activist.    

 



LacyLavonMcDonaldIII.jpg Lacy Lavon McDonald III

SSG Lacy McDonald served honorably with the United States Army for 13 years with 2 deployments to Afghanistan. Currently, he volunteers full-time at Lake Middle School as a fitness coach and garden lead, providing weekly lessons to Lake’s center-based students. Additionally, he created a nonprofit organization called Outer Haven that provides outdoor urban education through fitness, camping, gardening, and archery. Lacy was a highly decorated Soldier being awarded the Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, Combat Action Badge, Army Commendation Medal with Valor, and nominated Soldier of the year in 2014 by the Chamber of Commerce of Aurora. Lacy has an extensive background mentoring and guiding the youth over the last 8 years. It is Lacy's goal to provide wisdom, character building, social-emotional support, and leadership skills for the youth today to become the leaders of tomorrow. Lacy demonstrated policy leadership in the development of the Big Green DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization) as an experiment in democratizing and decentralizing our grant making when it comes to Food Justice. Lacy enjoys spending time with his family and youth from his community that he serves.

 


linh-tran.jpgLinh Tran
Linh Tran brings a passion for sustainability, food, and collaboration to Healthy Food for Denver Kids Commission. She is committed to building sustainable water and food systems that ensure equitable access to healthy food.

Linh is currently the Rural Democracy Initiative Deputy Director, a philanthropic collaborative focused on civic infrastructure in rural areas in service of a stronger democracy and shared prosperity. Previously, she advanced cross-sector sustainability solutions as the Collaboration & Strategy Officer for the Water Funder Initiative and as the California Energy Service Corps Coordinator for the California Conservation Corps. She has also served as an Obama Organizing Fellow, Tom Ford Fellow for Philanthropy at the Compton Foundation, Environmental Defense Fund Climate Corps Fellow with Guitar Center, and sustainability consultant to Ares Management.

Linh holds a BA in Human Biology with a concentration in conservation and sustainable development from Stanford University, and a MA in Environmental Management from Yale University.

When relaxing, Linh can be found hiking the mountains of Colorado, tending to indoor plants and a backyard garden, and cooking elaborate community meals. 

 


Lisa Piscopo Headshot.jpg Lisa Piscopo, Ph.D.

Dr. Lisa Piscopo is the Executive Strategist for the Denver Department of Human Services advising the Executive Management Team, staff, and other city directors on the use of data to make informed decisions for policy, programs, services, and investments in Denver neighborhoods. She has over 11 years of experience with the city and more than 20 years of advocating for children and families in the public policy arena. In Denver, she serves on several Mayoral-directed initiatives including the Youth Violence Prevention Executive Committee, the Crime Hotspot Advisory Board, the Denver Preschool Program Evaluation Committee, and the formed Public Health Harms workgroup. She continually creates innovative data tools to effectively communicate and reach across bureaucratic silos to advocate for efficient and targeted investments to ensure all Denver residents have an equal opportunity for success. 

 


Maggie Brown.png Maggie Brown

As the CEO of Bondadosa, Maggie proudly leads the organization to and through innovative solutions to strengthen the regional food ecosystem so that it is more kind and sustainable for generations to come. Bondadosa is a social impact company that provides tech, logistics, and transportation services to support government agencies, small businesses, and nonprofit programs, all with the goal of improving access to nutrient-dense food. Her personal commitment to creating meaningful change in the systems of food access and health equity stems from being raised on WIC, SNAP, FRL & other assistance programs. Maggie holds a Bachelor of Science in Human Nutrition-Dietetics and a diverse set of skills and experience in business management. Since 2012, she has worked in community health and logistics, always supporting local businesses and access to food. When she's not doing this passion-work, you can find Maggie enjoying books, TED talks or not taking herself too seriously in activities like yoga, tai chi, or weight training.

 


IMG-6297 - Megan Tracz.jpg Meg Tracz

Meg is a senior social impact and public policy leader with 15 years of experience driving advocacy initiatives, building cross-sector partnerships, developing the capacity of nonprofit leaders, and investing in strategic initiatives. She has held leadership roles in social innovation and public policy with the United Way network, driving national campaigns to increase food security, build financial stability, and expand access to healthcare.  Meg consults for social impact organizations seeking to drive systems-change through public policy and advocacy, optimal program design and delivery, and grant fundraising and investing. She volunteers as a grant reviewer with Serve Colorado, is an AmeriCorps*VISTA alumna, and received her BS from Cornell University and her MPA at the George Washington University. 

Through her career, Meg has advocated to increase access to food (SNAP, summer meals, last mile food delivery) and she’s thrilled to bring her skills and passion to the Commission. In her free time, you’ll find Meg cooking, hiking, and exploring Denver’s amazing culinary scene.

 


 Melinda Day.crop lq - Melinda Day.jpgMelinda Day, PhD, MPH

Melinda Day has over 20 years of experience in organizational development and nonprofit leadership. She's been an entrepreneur in higher education and educational technology, focused on workforce development, and led organizations in transforming employer-based training into apprenticeship-based degrees.

Dr. Day serves as the Chief Impact Officer at Food Bank of the Rockies. In this role, she steers organizational strategy, developing benchmarks and key performance indicators to measure impact. Committed to the organization's values — service, integrity, diversity, equity, inclusion, collaboration, and innovation — she ensures these principles integrate throughout the strategy, public policy, and operations. Dr. Day received her BA in Child Development from Tufts University and her Master's in Public Health focused on Maternal and Child Health from the University of Illinois-Chicago. She completed her Ph.D. in Child and Family Studies at Syracuse University. Her dissertation focused on race and ethnic stereotype formation and teacher training. 

 


MelissaJaniszewski.jpg

 Melissa Janiszewski 

Melissa serves as the Executive Director for the Denver Mayor’s Office of Children’s Affairs. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations and Middle Eastern Politics and has a Master’s Degree from the University of Denver for Sustainable Development and Global Practice in Social Work. Melissa has over 16 years of experience in health policy and community development both in the U.S. and abroad. As the Senior Strategy and Policy Advisor, Melissa works closely with city and state agencies and program staff to lead and set the priorities for successful initiatives that improve outcomes for families and children. In her spare time, Melissa is devoted to building connection, community and shared experience through food and enjoys seeing her 3 dogs take full advantage of what Colorado nature has to offer. 

 


paul_kashmann_Chamber_8x10 - Claire Kelly.jpg Councilman Paul Kashmann

Paul is a New Jersey native and moved to Colorado in 1971. A long time resident of the Virginia Village neighborhood, he has made his home in District 6 for some 40 years.

Paul has always been invested in community, having run The Washington Park Profile newspaper for 36 years. Wanting to continue his love for people and passion for community service, Paul successfully ran for City Council in 2015. Paul is currently serving his third and final term on council, where he is focusing his policy on the environment and children.

The proud parent of a blended group of five wonderful children and six grandchildren, outside of work Paul enjoys running, golf, hiking, reading, live music and live theater. Paul and his guitar are in great demand for bedtime lullabies and campfire singalongs. He is renowned among his circle of friends for his skill at three-ball juggling.

 


SandraStenmark.jpg Sandra Stenmark
Sandra Stenmark is a Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at University of Colorado School of Medicine. The HFDK Commission goals of improving access to nutritious food and nutrition education align with her work as a pediatrician of 40 years. She directed the Kaiser Permanente Pediatric Obesity Prevention and Treatment program, which linked pregnant women and families to both nutritional education and nutrition resources, including federal nutrition assistance programs.  Other relevant clinical work was improving food security through the lifespan. Sandra has presented at state and national conferences on the role of health systems in improving nutritious food access, diet quality and food systems. In addition to clinical interventions, Sandra has advocated and testified for state and national policies which promote nutritious food access and health equity. Sandra considers it an honor to work with other Commission and community members on advancing the goals of the HFDK initiative.

Duties of the Commission

The HFDK Commission meets regularly to set funding priority areas, advise how to use the funds through a public application process, including creating criteria for the selection of organizations to receive HFDK funds, issue funds for healthy food and related education, and ensure the funds are best used for their intended purposes. The Commission recommends procedures for the funding application, consideration and selection of grantees that are then carried out by DDPHE staff. The HFDK Commission meets according to public meeting rules and is required to report annually on the funds distributed to the City Council and Mayor.

  • Commission Term: Three years. The terms shall be staggered so that at least three (3) of the commissioners shall be appointed each year. No commissioner shall serve more than two terms.
  • Compensation: None
  • Confirmation: No
  • Function:  Determine the allocation of funding derived from Healthy Food for Kids Sales Tax. The Commission consists of 11 members appointed by the Mayor and 2 members appointed by City Council.
  • Qualifications: Must be a member of the Denver community.
  • Enabling Authorization: Ordinance #302 

More details about requirements and qualifications for the Commission are available on the Board and Commission website

Committee Information

 

It is expected that commission members will actively participate in committee(s) outside monthly commission meetings based on their interest, skill set and availability. Some commissioners opt to participate in multiple committees, while others have chosen to participate in one or two committees more deeply, especially taking on the role of chairs.

Committee logistics (meeting scheduling, note-taking, etc.) are supported by HFDK staff, whereas committee chairs help steer the direction and content of the meetings, including setting agendas and facilitating meetings. Note that most committees will have standing monthly meetings held, and if they don’t need to meet in a given month, we will cancel.

Committees & Goals:

Equity- The goal of the Equity Committee is to ensure that the principles of justice, equity, diversity, and inclusivity guide, direct, and center HFDK work, grants, and outreach. We aim to understand and continually learn about the racial, cultural, institutional, and systemic influences that facilitate or impede children and youth’s access to and/or availability of healthy food. The Committee is responsible for driving systemic and institutional change towards more equitable outcomes in the Commission’s work. This includes bringing an equity lens to policies, processes, decision making, funding, capacity building, evaluation, community engagement, and membership, through liaising with staff, chairs, and the other committees. The Committee may also propose equity-related learning opportunities for the Commission and grantees.

Evaluation- The goal of the evaluation committee is to help ensure that HFDK funds are being used in the most impactful, effective, and equitable ways. The HFDK Evaluation Committee is responsible for being a thought partner of the staff and contractor on the evaluation, including providing high level input to evaluation activities, data, processes, and overall approaches. The Committee meets regularly with staff and the contractor outside monthly Commission meetings to advance the work. The Committee may review and approve evaluation-related RFPs and recommend/help select contractors to support the evaluation.

Funding- Establish and propose grant-making, funding priority areas, Request for Proposals, and other strategies to accomplish HFDK’s vision that “All Denver kids have reliable access to nutritious and culturally diverse food and food education that helps them  grow, learn, and thrive for life.” Key areas of focus include, but are not limited to, developing RFP schedules, scopes of work, scoring criteria, and requirements, and advising on budget and other grant-making strategies. Note that all non-City Council commissioners are required to review grant applications annually (though all are encouraged).

Governance- This committee is responsible for supporting and overseeing changes to HFDK governance documents, including proposing and reviewing changes to the commission bylaws and Denver Revised Municipal Code (DRMC)/HFDK ordinance. The committee can propose revisions for the full Commission to vote to approve.

Membership-

     Members: The Membership Committee is composed of at least three Commission members. HFDK staff also serve as members who review & score applications.

     Duties/Functions: The membership committee supports membership & leadership development, including refining the application process, assisting with new member outreach, reviewing written applications, interviewing candidates, selecting new commission members, and reviewing renewal requests to continue to serve on the HFDK Commission.

     Timeline: Seasonal (spring-summer)

Technical Assistance, Capacity Building and Strategic Partnerships- Build capacity of grantees and systems, provide technical assistance, and facilitate partnerships that will advance the Theory of Change strategies to accomplish HFDK’s vision that “All Denver kids have reliable access to nutritious and culturally diverse food and food education that helps them  grow, learn, and thrive for life.” Key areas of focus for providing TA, strategic partnerships, and building capacity are to increase enrollment in federal nutrition assistance programs (SNAP, WIC, SFSP, CACFP) and advance the HFDK nutrition goals.

 

Ordinance 302

For the full original language establishing the Healthy Food for Denver’s Kids initiative and Commission as it is outlined in Ordinance 302, refer to the Denver Revised Municipal Code.