A Focus on Food

Sheila Mahoney and Gordon Douglas '55

Gordon Douglas ’55 and Sheila Mahoney are committed to communicating and helping to find solutions to the perils of industrial food production. They approached the Princeton AlumniCorps Board with a plan to help increase the number of fellowship placements focused on this important public health issue. Here is an update from Gordon and Sheila on their work to bring attention and expertise to this issue through our fellowship program:

Our idea for food fellowships was presented to the Board of Directors of AlumniCorps on September 25, 2010. The problem addressed in the proposal is modern industrial food production (“factory farming”) and its devastating effects on human health, the environment, and on animal welfare. The marked rise in obesity and Type II diabetes plus sustained high rates of cancer and heart disease are directly attributable to modern food production.

With the goal of creating fellowships in this very important area we have been approaching nonprofit organizations that are working on making the facts clear, increasing public awareness of the issues and promoting sustainable alternatives. Fellowships may be focused in a variety of areas including public policy, science, public health, alternative agriculture initiatives, and advocacy.

Some of the most active organizations with whom we are in contact are Pew Charitable Trusts, Union of Concerned Scientists, Center for a Liveable Future at Johns Hopkins, Center for Science in the Public Interest and the Humane Society of the United States. They have all been very enthusiastic about the program. Additional organizations that have indicated interest include universities, health departments, foundations, state and community food programs, and more. One of the officers at the Pew Charitable Trusts called this the “new environmental movement.”

We plan to continue to email you with updates and we welcome your involvement.

Gordon Douglas ‘55
Sheila Mahoney

For more information, email project55@alumnicorps.org

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