Executive Director – Ian Lai
Ian Lai from the Richmond Schoolyard Society has joined forces with the Richmond Food Security Society. Ian brings with him 14 years of environmental education and programming experience. Ian will work with Richmond’s children, youth, and wonderfully diverse community, collaborating to bring joy and meaning to food.
Ian is a chef educator, beekeeper, yogi and rock climber. He lives in Richmond with his wife and daughter.
Urban Agriculture Program Manager – Grace Augustinowicz
Grace joins us from working with KPU.
Education Program Coordinator – Alicia Gowan
Alicia is the lead facilitator of our Kids in the Garden Program in Richmond’s Elementary Schools. She recently completed her Master’s in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science from Lund University in Sweden. While overseas, she dedicated her free time to two community-based non-profit organizations which focused on sustainable food systems and sharing economies. She has spent her upbringing gardening alongside her father and has volunteered on a Regenerative Farm.
Alicia is a lifelong learner and loves working with communities. She is enthusiastic about sharing her knowledge and experiences with Richmond residents to build community resilience through the love of food! In this role, she hopes to help youth create a deeper connection with nature and gain an understanding of the processes behind the food on our dinner plates.
In her free time, you might find her running in the city or hiking in the mountains.
Education Programmer – Ann Metcalfe
Ann’s love of gardening and teaching has found a perfect match teaching students to find the joy of growing healthy food. She learned so much during her ten years with the Richmond Schoolyard Society and looks forward to continuing her love of gardening and connecting with those gifts of the Earth in the veggie patch with the Richmond Food Security Society.
Ann also teaches in the Surrey School District as a Kindergarten-Grade 7 substitute teacher.
Office Coordinator – Geethu Kurian
Geethu was born in Kochi, a small and very beautiful seaside city of Kerala which is the southernmost state of India. She is a Graduate in Commerce and Tourism and holds a Master’s in International Business from Leeds Metropolitan University, UK. She has a passion for numbers, which is why she chose accounting as her career.
She has worked with Ernst & Young in the UK. She was also a TV host for a popular Indian Channel, Kairali and a Weddings and Events Planner. Geethu’s professional background is a mix of accounting, guest relations, and hospitality and thus she has developed a diverse skill set. Her other interests include cooking, driving, and painting. She is now a proud member of RFSS.