Our Team

Board and Staff

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Sarah Carden

Senior Policy Advocate

Sarah Carden joined Farm Action to raise awareness and advocate for policies that meaningfully reform the nation’s food and agriculture system.

Sarah holds a B.A. in Evolutionary Biology from Harvard University. She has been working on food system reforms for over a decade and brings expertise in local food systems and distribution networks, agriculture, non-profit development, and food entrepreneurship. Sarah has also worked as an organizer on two presidential campaigns and one congressional campaign.

Sarah lives with her husband and their two young children on their organic vegetable farm.

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Jessica Cusworth

Communications Manager

As Communications Manager, Jessica focuses on furthering engagement with the organization’s work to create a fair and sustainable food and agriculture system.

Jessica holds a B.A. in Global Environmental Studies and an M.S. in Environmental Science and Policy from Clark University. She brings a wide range of experience from her past work in land conservation, where she focused on wildlife habitat restoration, environmental monitoring, volunteer management, and engaging communities in land stewardship. She’s cultivated skills in digital communications, program development, and creative storytelling through her experience working in the nonprofit world.

Jessica spends her free time tending to her urban vegetable garden, cooking new recipes, and working on her photography skills.

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Webster Davis

Senior Policy Advisor

Webster Davis is owner of Triple D Produce, located two miles west of Auxvasse, Missouri. He has worked with various FFA groups to secure vegetable starts and encourage youth to pursue food production as an occupation. He worked with Lincoln University as a mentor for the Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences (MANRRS). He hosted an intern through Lincoln University and has served on the planning committees for Minority and Limited Resources Farmers and Ranchers Conferences.

Webster is a proud Ambassador for the Missouri AgrAbility program which is dedicated to helping farmers and ranchers return to their passions and livelihoods after an accident. 

Webster is a veteran having turned 18 years old in U.S. Marine Corps boot camp and serving almost 23 years in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve and Missouri Army National Guard; he is now a member of the Farmer Veteran Coalition. He conceived and is Chairman of the State of Missouri NAACP Agriculture Committee, whose goal is to increase awareness of agriculture issues and opportunities.

Webster is the treasurer of the Union Local where he works at the Callaway Nuclear Plant, and is proudly serving as the Secretary for the State of Missouri NAACP Conferences. In this role he is fulfilling the important work of ensuring that books and papers are ready for the next generation.

Angela Huffman

President, Board of Directors and Staff

Angela Huffman is a co-founder of Farm Action. She provides strategic thought and direction for the organization’s efforts to integrate research, communications, and advocacy toward successful policy reforms.

Previously, as communications and research director for the Organization for Competitive Markets, she helped lead the regional organization to become a national voice on anti-monopoly issues in agriculture and food. In prior work, Angela led numerous institutions, retailers, and other food buyers to shift their purchasing toward farms that meet the highest standards for fairness and sustainability. Angela has also held marketing and consulting positions for farms, regional dairy and meat processors, distributors, and restaurants.

Angela’s work has been profiled by The Hill, NPR and Fox News, and she has been cited by The New York Times, Forbes, The Washington Post, Politico, and others. She holds an M.A. in Public Policy and Management from the Ohio State University.

Angela is renewing her family’s 200-year tradition by becoming the sixth generation to live and farm on their Northwest Ohio homestead.

Dee Laninga

Senior Writer and Content Creator

Dee joined the Farm Action team to raise awareness about the organization’s core issues and drive engagement toward equitable, sustainable, and family farm-centered solutions.

Dee draws from her background in strategic communications, creative writing, and design to craft resonant narratives and compelling graphics to advance an array of advocacy initiatives. Her past work in such diverse sectors as clean energy, antihunger, and agriculture inform her broad perspective.

A full-time digital nomad since 2019, Dee spends her spare time hiking in the phenomenal state and national parks this country has to offer. She holds a BA from Grand Valley State University and an MFA from Washington University in St Louis.

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Christian Lovell

Senior Director of Programs

Christian Lovell draws on his deep experience in production agriculture and food policy as Farm Action’s Senior Director of Programs. In this role, he provides leadership and direction for the organization’s growing program portfolio to advance a more just food system.
Previously, Christian spent nearly a decade working on federal agricultural policy in Washington, DC, and served as Legislative Director to U.S. Representative Rosa DeLauro during her time as Chair of the House Committee on Appropriations. He also held other roles at the National Governors Association, The World Bank, and Informa Economics Group. 
Christian is a native of West Central Illinois where he now resides and manages his family’s Registered Hereford cattle herd. He passionately advocates for regenerative grazing and is actively involved in the Illinois Grazing Lands Coalition.
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Joe Maxwell

Chief Strategy Officer, Staff

Secretary and Treasurer, Board of Directors

Joe Maxwell is a co-founder of Farm Action. He focuses his work on a vision of an inclusive U.S. economy that works for all people, providing them an equitable opportunity to share in the prosperity they help build, rather than an economy that works for just a handful of individuals and multi-national corporations.

Joe has held key positions in both political and initiative petition campaigns. During the last election cycle, he assisted Presidential, U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives candidates in developing their antitrust, agriculture, and food policy positions.

Joe holds degrees in agriculture economics and law from the University of Missouri. He served as a Missouri state legislator, as Missouri’s Lieutenant Governor, and is retired from the Army National Guard, where he served as a First Sergeant in the Field Artillery.

Joe’s work has been profiled by The Hill, Huffington Post, Mother Jones, Politico, and The Nation. He has been cited by CNN, The New York Times, NPR, USA Today, and the Washington Post, among others.

Joe and his brother, Steve, are Missouri family farmers.

Anim Steel

Vice President, Board of Directors

Anim Steel is a co-founder and past executive director of the Real Food Generation, which harnesses the power of youth and universities to build a fair and sustainable food system (programs include the Real Food Challenge, the Real Meals Campaign, and Uprooted & Rising).

Prior to Real Food Generation, Anim led national initiatives at The Food Project in Boston, consulted with Economic Development Assistance Consortium, and developed employment training programs at the Bowery Residents Committee. 

Anim holds a B.A. in Astrophysics and History from Williams College and a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.  

He is the recipient of a James Beard Leadership Award and received an Echoing Green award for social entrepreneurship. Born in Ghana, Anim grew up in West Africa and Washington, D.C.

Joe Van Wye

Policy and Outreach Director

Joe Van Wye is the Policy and Outreach Director at Farm Action, where he works to implement policies that will support farmers, food producers, and American consumers.
He spent seven years working in the House of Representatives, both for the personal office of Congressman David N. Cicilline and, most recently, for the House Judiciary’s Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial, and Administrative law. In Congress, Joe developed expertise in antitrust and regulatory issues, as well as a passion for fighting concentrated power wherever it appears in the economy. He has also worked on a number of political campaigns at the local, state, and national levels.
Joe holds a B.A. in Political Science from Brown University, and is based out of Washington, D.C. When he is not working to build a fair food system for all, Joe spends his time running a long standing Dungeons & Dragons game and sampling the excellent craft breweries and farm-to-table restaurants in the D.C. area.