Team Lovin’ recently added a Development Director, Corporate & Foundation Relations to our team. Get to know Christine Becker in this Q&A.
How did you arrive at Lovin’ Spoonfuls?
Upon the advent of COVID-19, my husband and I decided to uproot from Atlanta and move to Boston. I worked for Wholesome Wave Georgia, a nonprofit focusing on food access through Food is Medicine and SNAP matches, so I immediately began searching for companies who did similar things. I came across the Boston Food Access Council (where I’m now a voting member!) and Lovin’ Spoonfuls, where I was immediately struck by the innovative approach of bridging the gap between two complex problems: food waste and food insecurity. I applied for my current job, and the rest is history.
Tell us about your background! How did you become interested in food rescue?
While volunteering for a 5-acre urban farm in Atlanta and observing the gap between the surplus from harvest and underserved communities facing hunger, I began questioning why these problems existed. I spoke with farmers, attended food policy symposiums, and conducted food system maps to try and understand why the supply was not meeting the demand. This process birthed my belief that food rescue is the solution. Also, on a very micro and personal level, I shared produce from my backyard with neighbors in the community – peaches from my peach tree, blackberries, lettuces, and herbs. I also invested in a vermicomposting system, so I’d have thousands of worms decomposing our kitchen scraps versus sending them to landfills.
What passions do you bring to the job?
Fresh, healthy food is one of the greatest pleasures we as human beings can experience – it connects us, nourishes our bodies, and empowers us to be our best selves. I desire this for every single person, so I work with the conviction that if I can make that possible through food rescue in my new hometown of Boston, then that is what I’m here to do. I’m also highly relational, so I’m looking forward to cultivating partnerships with a diverse pool of individuals. For me, it’s all about people. Lastly, I believe that clear direction provides secure pathways for success; therefore, I enjoy strategizing programs using evaluative quantitative and qualitative data sets (I’m a stats nerd!).
Do your friends/family consider you a good cook? Any signature recipes?
Gosh, I sure hope so. It’d be a pity to have spent as much time and money as I have at the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts and not produce good food. But on a serious note, I do love to cook. My triple dark chocolate dairy-free cake has been a show stopper for years. And I also enjoy steaming local mussels, pairing them with a homemade baguette to soak up the wine and garlicky goodness.
What would we find in your fridge now?
At the moment, you would find the following: guava-infused kombucha, several bags of arugula (my husband eats an arugula salad every day for lunch), oat milk for my coffee (I’m lactose-intolerant), an entire container of garlic (like ten bulbs of garlic at any point of the week), and dark chocolate-covered pretzels.
What’s your favorite childhood food memory?
As a young girl, visiting the outdoor farmers market with my parents and picking out the plumpest, juiciest peaches one could imagine. It was bliss!
Who are your heroes?
I’d say I have two heroes. The first is my grandmother Rosa. Growing up on a farm in SC during the Great Depression, she embodied strength and resiliency. She was also half-Cherokee Indian and taught me a lot about my Native American heritage. My grandma always emphasized the importance of family, was committed to her community and would be the first to break out in dance and song at family parties. She also made the best homemade biscuits and blackberry jam. My second hero is my husband, Keith. Keith has selflessly supported the pursuit of so many of my dreams while always cheering me on. I think he’s the best gift I’ve ever received.