Lenora is a native of St. Louis and she received her BS in Sociology & Minor in Criminology from The University of Missouri St. Louis. She is an alumni of FOCUS St. Louis (FOCUS Fellows Class 2020-2021) and served as a member of the Supply Chain and Analytics Advisory Board for the University of Missouri – Saint Louis. Her career in hunger relief began at The St. Louis Area Foodbank in 1996 and she spent 26 years gaining a wealth of experience within food banking and the issues surrounding hunger and food insecurity. In 2021, she decided to change environments and went on to join another food bank in the area, Operation Food Search, where she spent almost a year before joining her current employer, Umoja Supply Chain Solutions. Her passion for providing food to help communities thrive is the main objective of her current position in hunger relief as she serves on the Procurement team at Umoja, purchasing food items for food boxes that are designed for food banks. Full circle! Lenora feels this is a great time to serve on the Board of The Rustic Roots Sanctuary! “It is a great fit, I’m passionate about fresh produce and providing that option to communities and Rustic Roots Sanctuary is a great organization doing great work!” In her spare time, she loves to cook, travel, enjoy great music, enjoy family and relax with her husband of 8 eight years/best friend of 18 years, Reginald Gooden. Janice has extensive experience in Customer Service Management and Municipal Government where she prides herself on extensive rapport building and work tirelessly bringing services and resources to our communities. Currently serves on the Spanish Lake Association Executive Board as appointed Secretary and Angelic Healthcare Services Community Outreach Program Board as Vice Chair. Both organizations focus on community building, health and wellness. Being a previous restaurant owner, she has grown my own food and loves to cook and as a current Travel Agent, loves to travel to the Caribbean and Mexico islands.
Janett LewisFounder/Executive Director
Holds an Early Childhood Education degree and has been a licensed holistic health provider for over twenty years. Lewis began her twenty plus year holistic health care career while obtaining an Associates Degree in Real Estate. Lewis has twelve years experience as a RE professional and investor and two years experience marketing for small businesses. Lewis has served her communities in many ways including two years as a board director of the Clairemont Town Council (CA), two years serving on the board of the Spanish Lake CDC, one year as the Board Chair of the Spanish Lake CDC, and is a St. Louis Neighborhood Leadership Fellow. Lewis is passionate about fighting for food equity, teaching people to grow food, the importance of nutrition, and how to live more sustainable lives. Having a background in Waldorf education, holistic health care, and business prepared Lewis to launch Rustic Roots Sanctuary Co.a culmination of her life's greatest works.
Started his working career in Operation and Facility Management and progressed to international business. After over twenty five years in this line of work he decided to make a change and left the corporate world to open STL RE Investments LLC. which Serves Habitat for Humanity, Veterans, and seniors in the Missouri area. While Scott began working towards giving veterans and socioeconomically disenfranchised individuals an opportunity to own a home, his work with Habitat for Humanity spurred an interest in building green spaces. This in turn led him to begin working with Janett Lewis to start GROW Spanish Lake Community Garden. Scott has been instrumental in every step of RRSC. He envisions wellness retreats, animal husbandry, bee keeping, and more and as the VP of Facilities, Scott will lead the construction build out and structure requirements for our expansion.
Dorlita Adams is currently the principal of Barbara C. Jordan Elementary School. Dorlita Adams is a native of St. Louis, MO and grew up on the west side of the city. She is a graduate of Mulberry Grove High School, in Illinois, and has an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and Behavior Disorders from Harris-Stowe State University. Dorlita earned a Master's of Arts in Educational Administration from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and completed her Education Specialist Degree in Educational Leadership at Missouri Baptist University. Dorlita and her husband (a preschool teacher) are residents of Unincorporated St. Louis County. Dorlita Adams vast work experience includes: the Ritenour School District for seventeen years; Director of Alternative Education in the Ritenour School District; Principal of Kratz Elementary School for eleven years; Reading specialist and an Assistant Principal at Hoech Middle school; Principal at Kratz Elementary School; Assistant Principal at Adams Elementary School; Ferguson Florissant School District for seven years. Her extensive roles included one year as a Reading Specialist and six years as a Reading Recovery Teacher. Mrs. Adams started her illustrious career as a fourth-grade teacher in the St. Louis Public School District. She was a teacher leader there for four years. Throughout her career, Mrs. Adams has been active within the community and is a member of community service organizations that provide support to children and their families. She is also one of the founding Chief Executive Officers of “Passion 4 Pink Change,” a non-for profit organization established to help individuals who have been diagnosed with breast cancer and their families. Mrs. Adams’ multifaceted leadership abilities include strong interpersonal skills; extensive management experience; a phenomenal educational foundation; a solid work ethic; excellent communication skills; and enhanced decision-making skills.
Elizabeth FieldsOperation and Program Development
Earned her BA and MFA in English Literature, African American Studies, and Creative Writing from the University of Georgia. Fields is an incoming online MSW winter 2021 candidate at Florida State University and plans to focus on trauma counseling, social work policy, and community mediation. Fields has extensive academic relationships through working at the University of Georgia, University of North Georgia, Athens Technical College, Liaocheng University in China, and as a Cave Canem fellow. Her interdisciplinary work has long focused on bridging the gap between academia and the community and she is passionate about social justice causes such as mental health and domestic violence awareness, prison reform, and holistic food justice. Fields has developed sustainable programs for UGA’s African American Studies Institute, The Center for Global Exchange, and has written award winning curriculum proposals while working at UNG. Fields is an avid vegan/vegetarian cook and has studied holistic health care for the past twenty years. She is excited to use her expertise to help develop sustainable and holistic health education programs to youths and seniors in Spanish Lake, Missouri.
Connie RisbyBoard of Directors
Has a background in marketing and sales and is a long time Spanish Lake resident. A seasoned business and marketing professional with forty years of experience, Connie Risby’s experience crosses several industries, including: Retail, Fast Food/Quick Casual/Full-Service Restaurants, Heating and Air Conditioning (HVAC), Employment Recruitment Marketing, Government/Military and Financial Services/Banking. Connie has expertise in identifying problems area(s) and developing key objectives, strategies, and tactics at every level including, budgeting, branding/creative, consumer/trade media (online and offline), sales projections, product mix analysis, promotion evaluations, competitive analysis and measurement.
Katherine Moore-Freeman (Kate)Board of Directors
A passion for plants and environmental stewardship has served Kate well over the last twenty years of her career in the Missouri Botanical Garden’s Horticulture Department. A reverence for ancient artistic techniques and a veneration of common ‘one-time-use’ materials has motivated Kate as an artist and as a supporter of local arts, Kate has served her community as the newspaper editor for the St. Louis Chapter of the Women’s Caucus for the Arts and as the exhibits chair for The Northern Arts Council. As a long time Spanish Lake resident and as a mother, Kate hopes that her commitment to creating a legacy of lasting value for future generations will guide her well in her collaboration with Rustic Roots Sanctuary’s Board and volunteers.
Jeremiah SampoBoard of Directors
Jeremiah grew up in a small north woods town in the state of Wisconsin, spent almost 2 years in Minneapolis where he attended North Central University. He has worked with an organization that reached out to the homeless and runaway youth with the purpose of helping them turn their lives around. He was an assistant leader at the Joshua House that provided a stable environment for young men so they could transition out on their own. He moved to St. Louis, MO in 2003 and has fallen in love with the area and the wide variety of businesses and entertainment it offers. He has held many positions in the workforce from general laborer, and small business owner, to department manager. In 2015 he earned his B.S. in Business Administration from UMSL. In August 2020 he accepted a position as a Receiving Coordinator at the St. Louis Area Food Bank. It has been his desire to work with organizations that support the community. He brings a strong work ethic, organizational skills, and critical thinking. He looks forward to building relationships, and learning new skills. He sees challenges as building blocks to a strong mind and body.
Donna Rae JonesBoard of Directors
Donna Rae is a Yoga and Mindfulness Teacher and Coach working with adults and children since 2015. Her passion for community, connection, and mindfulness is evident as the founder of Black Women Hike Sundays and co-founder of Mindfulness with People of Color.
Cheyanne LovelletteBoard of Directors
Cheyanne has a background in Education and Non-Profit Management as well as a lifelong passion for environmental stewardship and growing things to delight and nourish her community. She believes that having a connection to the land and the food we eat should be accessible to all and that by fostering these connections we build a better world together. When she’s not working you can find her in her city garden (probably with an open St. Louis Public Library book and a microscope nearby) learning about the plants, insects, and wildlife who share our green spaces. She hopes that her professional talents and passion for food equity will be an asset to the future success of Rustic Roots Sanctuary.
Eric StevensFarm Manager
Eric has been involved with growing local produce for over eighteen years. Eric and his wife, Crystal, co-founded FLOURISH along the bluffs of the Mississippi River which encompasses a farm, a plant nursery, and an apothecary. Additionally, Eric has extensive knowledge in edible and ecological landscapes. Eric has been the Farm Manager for various organic farms around St. Louis such as Confluence Farm, EarthDance Organic Farm School and La Vista CSA Farm. He has also been a consultant for other small farms in the area. In 2016, he was selected as a US Delegate by Slow Food St. Louis at Terra Madre, an international food conference in Turin, Italy. Eric is also a fine artist with an emphasis on printmaking and woodblock prints and hand painted house portraits. He is a carpenter, woodworker and land steward.
Kari ShoneFarm Assistant
Since returning to Missouri 19 year ago, Kari has discovered her passion for sustainable agriculture and volunteered at an organic CSA, elementary school gardens, an urban farm, grown a backyard garden, and spearheaded a collectively-worked neighborhood garden. She continues to raise her three boys and work at a family-owned skating rink. She is thrilled at the opportunity to join the Rustic Roots Sanctuary team and is most excited about getting to know the people who are a part of the farm and community!
Erin Renée RobertsFarm Assistant/Movement Therapist
Erin Renée Roberts is a multi-faceted performance art maker, a healer/movement therapist and an environmentalist. She obtained her BFA in Theater-Acting from Seattle’s Cornish College of the Arts. Alongside her work as a performer, Erin is a licensed massage therapist and advocate for alternative healing, stress-reduction and relaxation techniques for artists and creatives through her private practice Creative Healing Arts Therapy Tent, LLC. She completed the Earthdance Organic Farm School Apprenticeship in 2020 and has accumulated most of her farm experience as a volunteer on farms through the Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WWOOF) since 2016. She helps us steward the land part time and is excited to share her healing with the Rustic Roots Sanctuary community through her pop-up holistic healing services by appointment Wednesdays through November. She can also be seen and experienced on Sundays at EarthDance Farm (between 11am-3pm). Contact her to book a healing session on her site: www.creativeinhabitor.com
Nicole AlbertSocial Media Intern
Nicole will be helping Rustic Roots Sanctuary as a social media intern this season. She was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri until 2015 when she she joined the United States Air Force. She is currently living in the Panhandle of Florida. Since separating from the Air Force, she has focused her time on being a full time student at Florida State University. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her husband and dog as well as spending time outside and trying out new food joints. She looks forward to being a part of the Rustic Roots Sanctuary team and promoting the mission at hand.
Margaret WilliamsFarm Assistant (Student Intern)
M.J. is our 18 year old student intern. She is a Spanish Lake resident and helps with planting, mulching and animal care. She's an animal lover and an outdoor enthusiast!