Robert Pekin, Director and Chair
Robert is a former 4th generation organic dairy farmer and over the last 17 years has been innovating the concept of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) in Australia.
In 2004 he founded Food Connect, a dynamic multi-farmer food distribution enterprise with an innovative community-based distribution system. In 2009, the Food Connect Foundation was launched to increase the scope of the fair food movement internationally and across Australia. Under the Food Connect Foundation, Think Food was initiated, a consultancy specialising in food systems research. Think Food assists clients to design visionary solutions for food and agriculture that can be implemented at any scale.
Robert is a member of the national board of Australian Social Enterprise Advisory Group, co-founder of the Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance, and a member on the Boards of The Open Food Web and the Australian Food Hubs Network.
Emma-Kate Rose, Director and Secretary
Emma-Kate has extensive skills in applied research, sessional lecturing, project management, event management and start-up enterprise development. She joined Food Connect as General Happiness Manager in 2011, coordinating a significant internal restructure, improving financial accountability and getting ‘investment-ready’ to scale impact.
The enterprise has led the way in transforming the local food system through paying farmers a fair price, employing marginalised people, and engaging over 60 volunteers around Brisbane to act as pick up points for customers. Focusing on ecological agriculture, family farms and strong local communities, Food Connect has developed its model over the last decade and open-sourced it's model with replications in cities and regions across Australia and New Zealand.
In May 2013, Emma-Kate became a Fellow of the Australian School for Social Entrepreneurs.
Steve Williams, Director
Steve is Queensland Social Innovation Manager at Marist180, where he is developing a suite of innovation and entrepreneurship programs aimed at enabling Queenslanders experiencing disadvantage to take part in the exciting innovation and start-up space.
In his previous role as Social Enterprise Director at Sandbag Inc Steve led SEED PPM to be awarded small Australian Social Enterprise of the Year 2014.