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.
Jessica Murnane, Director of Operations
Jessica has spent the majority of her working career in and around the non-profit sector and has worked with farms and agricultural organizations since 2017. She enjoys bringing her skill set to small organizations and businesses and helping propel them forward in their visions and plans. She lives in Columbus, IN with her husband, two barky beagle dogs, and a nearly invisible black cat. When not working to further the future of farms, she enjoys reading, exploring breweries, and working in her garden.
Board of Directors
Cesar Gellido, PIFF Secretary
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 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, PIFF President
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.
Originally from West Lafayette, IN, he earned B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University and M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. He holds his Certified Crop Adviser license in Indiana.
He is proudly the father of two teenage boys. When he’s not focused on farming and agriculture, or spending time with his sons, he enjoys time in the kitchen, running and other physical activities, reading, and getting out on a trail with his dog, Meara.
Ann Radtke, PIFF Vice 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. Since 2018, Ann has 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 son and 3 year old German Shepherd.
Kathy Yearwood, PIFF Treasurer
Retired accountant turned ultra-small-scale cut-flower, culinary herb and seasonal vegetable farmer. Operating as a solo-entrepreneur, incorporating sustainable practices to enhance the health of the soil and the plants that are grown. Passions include promoting locally grown in my 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.
I am Director of Legacy Taste of the Garden and I married into a multi-generation farming family. My responsibilities include building a sustainable farm structure, marketing and training modules in agriculture for BIPOC, socially disadvantaged farmers, youths and communities. I provide technical and strategic experience in creating the visionary outline, collaborating with individuals and organizations to create a sustainable business in agriculture.
I have been farming full time since 2010 and co-own and operate an organic market farm with my husband Eli (Full Hand Farm). We grow 45 different vegetables throughout the year and sell primarily to Indianapolis farmer's markets and restaurants. We are also raising a couple of great kids and employing up to 8 wonderful staff. Never sure if I'm juggling it all the right away but I sure try.
For over six years, I have worked to fight for food justice in the city of Indianapolis. I am the Founder and Director of the non-profit Community Food Box Project, which refurbishes plastic newspaper distribution boxes and turns them into little free pantries. I have managed multiple urban farms in Indianapolis and have plans to convert an urban plot into a garden within the next year.
Born and raised in Maine. A city kid. Turned farmer and lover of all things related to food, soil, and farming. I get to do farming for a living, what a privilege. (Perkins Family Farm)
I’m a 6th generation Indiana farmer raising a 7th generation. Based in Goshen, Indiana, our family raises transitioning Organic produce, pastured poultry and are adding 100% grassfed lamb. I’m a major advocate for Organic and sustainable agriculture.
I am committed to a lifestyle that fuses ancestral history within a modern context while seeking to hold space for and encourage agroecology and regenerative conservation by mutualistic practices, education and collaborations. Queer farming and land management is essential to our futures paradigm shift, where intersectionality & critical thought bring important clarity to our impact and potential on natural and intentional systems. Raising, growing and sharing plants, food and medicine in the Southern IN, disenfranchised neighborhood I grew up in grounds me in the lived-experience of food and material apartheid and guides me to inclusive solutions and networks of abundance.