Staff, Board, and Advisory Panel
Liz Brownlee, Co-Director
Liz Brownlee serves as PIFF's Co-Director. She has a passion for helping farmers connect and learn from each other. Liz and her husband, Nate, run Nightfall Farm, on her family's land in southeast Indiana. They've converted fifty acres of corn and soybean land to pasture, where they rotationally graze livestock on pasture and sell meat and eggs via their CSA, to restaurants and independent groceries, and farmers markets. Liz helped launch the Hoosier Young Farmers Coalition, and is eager to bring that sense of camaraderie and connection to PIFF.
Whitney Buccicone, Co-Director
Whitney Buccicone serves as one of the Co-Directors at PIFF. Her background is in libraries where she developed skills to help organizations evolve to their full potential. After a few years away, she is beyond thrilled to return to Indiana and transition to the world of supporting farmers and farming. Her goals in this role are to do all she can to make PIFF as sustainable as possible and ensure all of our farmers are set up for success and sustainability themselves.
Board of Directors
Cesar Gellido, Treasurer
Cesar Gellido started a community grassroots fire mitigation program in Colorado, called Saws and Slaws, that won the 2015 Innovation award, from the USDA forest service and International association of Fire Chiefs. Looking back, it was the best "Master Class," on how to incorporate his personal dreams while listening to communities’ desires, in order to establish systems like local fire departments and municipalities. It all boiled down to the art of building strong meaningful relationships. When he moved to Indiana, he knew he wanted to continue this relationship-based work.
Cesar is currently starting a mushroom business so he can relate to the challenges of a new farmer. As an architect, he has been trained to break things down into systems. When he understands systems, he knows he can work towards an elegant solution. The ability to connect typically unrelated dots is one of the superpowers he is bringing to PIFF.
Danielle Guerin, Member-At-Large
Danielle founded Soul Food Project Indy, a nonprofit farm that’s growing food, feeding neighbors, and training youth. She brings experience with all things farming nonprofit, from how to file for nonprofit status to recruiting board members and writing grants. Danielle’s background is in business. She has been involved in the farming world since 2013 and has been the lead farmer since starting Soul Food Project Indy in 2017. She is passionate about building a just and equitable food system. As a black female farmer, Danielle is aware of the struggles that many in her community face. Danielle is eager to help PIFF understand BIPOC farmers’ needs and hear their honest feedback.
Michael O'Donnell, Member-At-Large
Michael O’Donnell is passionate about working towards the more beautiful agriculture that our hearts know is possible, holding several roles in service to Indiana agriculture. He is the Farm Certification Manager at Living Prairie Family Farms in Wolcott, Indiana, a large-scale diversified organic grain farming operation. He is the Regenerative Agriculture Coordinator for the Diverse Corn Belt project in the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Purdue University, a USDA-NIFA-funded multidisciplinary project to bring together agricultural stakeholders (in Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa) to explore how a more diversified agricultural system in the Midwest could be more resilient and sustainable than the current corn-soybean dominated system. He is also the owner of Recovery Agriculture LLC, which offers agricultural consulting services to farmers and organizations seeking to transition to regenerative and organic farming systems.
Ann Radtke, President
Ann has been involved in the agricultural community since 2015 when she ran and operated a small market farm from her home in Greenwood, Indiana selling cut flower arrangements at 4 markets throughout Indianapolis. From 2018 to 2023, Ann worked full time as the Program Coordinator for Society of St. Andrew, working statewide connecting farmers with local volunteers to glean surplus produce for donation to hunger relief agencies.
Ann currently resides in Indianapolis, Indiana in the Twin Aire community on the Southeast side, with her 18 year old kiddo and 3 year old German Shepherd.
Kathy Yearwood, Treasurer
Kathy Yearwood is a retired accountant turned ultra-small-scale cut-flower, culinary herb and seasonal vegetable farmer. Operating as a solo-entrepreneur, her focus is incorporating sustainable practices to enhance the health of the soil and the plants that are grown.
Kathy's passions include promoting locally grown in her community, educating others on the benefits of improving their soil’s health, and motivating everyone to provide habitat for native pollinators.
I recently graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor's in Environmental and Ecological Engineering. I am currently a Masters' student at Notre Dame, studying environmental engineering. I have also been working with Society of St. Andrew for about a year.
I own and run a small organic vegetable farm together with my son in Randolph County Indiana (Christopher Farm). I have been farming there since 1997.
I am President & CEO of Second Harvest Food Bank located in Muncie, IN and serving eight East Central Indiana Counties with food and other non-food resources. I have been working in the non-profit areas of poverty and food insecurity for many years and in several different states. My passion is working toward equitable food access and food distribution for all Hoosiers.
Kris Klueg Heeter
I am a biologist at Indiana University and I currently serve as President of the North American Fruit Explorers (NAFEX), on the Board of Directors of the Northern Nut Growers Association (NNGA) and Indiana Nut and Fruit Growers Association (INFGA). My husband (Brian) and I have a small orchard and classified forest on a 100-acre place in Solsberry, IN, where we house Indiana's first fruit and nut tree repository with INFGA to preserve as many cultivars as possible.