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Healthy local farmland is an essential ingredient in providing healthy local food to health care institutions, strengthening the local economy, and enhancing communities.  Learn how health care professionals and food service providers can support farm-to-table initiatives and maintain efficient, resilient, and reliable links between farmers, distributors, institutions, and consumers.


  • Educate the audience about the threats to local food production and farmland loss   
  • Inform the audience about the importance of a local food economy to the hospital and the surrounding community 
  • Provide innovative ideas to incorporate locally grown foods into hospitals through their General Purchasing Organizations
  • Propose creative solutions to expanding the local food economy in the hospital setting


Kathryn Gardow, Gardow Consulting  / Land Matters Food Matters
Kathryn Gardow is the founder and Principal of Gardow Consulting—Land Matters Food Matters. She has worked for over 30 years on land issues, facilitating projects and developing solutions while addressing environmental concerns. Kathryn advocates integrating food production lands, farmlands, and community gardens into our communities, so our families can connect again with their sustenance. Kathryn is passionate about the preservation of our country’s food production lands, which are diminishing as a result of suburban sprawl, aging farmers, policy decisions, and the general lack of public awareness about where our food comes from.  

Pam Thieman, Manager of Food Operations and Retail Nutrition Services, Multicare Health System
Pam Thieman is the Manager of Food Operations and Retail Nutritional Services at Multicare Health Systems, Tacoma General Hospital in Tacoma, Washington.  Pam's interest in food began in fourth grade when her 4-H menus received blue ribbons at the state fair.  She has over 30 years of experience in HealthCare foodservice beginning as a dishwasher in a 20-bed hospital.  She has gained other experience in nursing homes, other hospitals, and has been in her current position for 5 years.  Her new pursuit is to start a bachelor's degree in Marketing.  For Pam, it has been an exciting time to be at MultiCare as the entire foodservice program has switched to whole, fresh and locally purchased foods, which is supported by the hospital's administration.

Lucy Norris, Director of Marketing,  Northwest Agricultural Business Center & Project Manager, Puget Sound Food Network
Lucy Norris is the Director of Marketing at the Northwest Agricultural Business Center (NABC) and also manages the Puget Sound Food Network (PSFN), a project of NABC. Lucy has over 12 years of food industry experience, having worked with some of the largest companies in the world helping them to understand consumer insights in food and beverage trends, including health and wellness, sustainability and organics. As Oregon State University faculty, Lucy managed a shared-use commercial kitchen at the Food Innovation Center and worked with Ecotrust's Food and Farms team as an interim editor of “The Guide to Local Seasonal Products for Oregon and Washington 2006.” She gathered qualitative data for an economic impact study for Portland's 6th Annual Farmer Chef Connection, and worked with the Oregon Department of Agriculture to develop products for commodity export showcase events.

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