Francesca began her relationship with Foodshed Capital as a board member in November 2020, where she served as Secretary. She joined our staff in November 2021 as Program Manager, overseeing our contributions to the Common Wealth Partnership, which is focused on developing a regenerative meat value chain in the Mid-Atlantic. Before joining us full-time, she worked as Community Innovation Advisor for Virginia Community Capital.
Francesca combines business acumen with extensive public and nonprofit experience in developing social mission policy and programs in food and agriculture, innovation, and financial inclusion, with a special interest in sustainability, soil health, agriculture’s role as a climate change solution, and local food systems to revitalize underserved communities. She has also worked for international and domestic agricultural development and food assistance programs with the United Nations and US Department of Agriculture (USDA). At USDA, she was principal advisor on food security policy. At US Department of Energy, she promoted international cooperation and technical assistance on clean energy and climate change mitigation. Francesca served on the board of a Quaker micro-finance organization to support marginalized women in establishing small businesses in India, Kenya, and Sierra Leone, and in the Peace Corps in Honduras.
Francesca has an MA and BA from Stanford University in economics and international agricultural development, and an MBA from the College of William and Mary. Francesca is currently working on a degree in horticultural technology and sustainable agriculture, including land management practices that improve soil health. She is leading a grassroots effort to advocate for new programs to support local food systems and soil health in VA. Francesca has grown children, and lives in Richmond with three beautiful Barred Plymouth Rock chickens.