by Karen Karp
While the lazy days of summer may finally be upon us, KK&P has been especially busy developing, facilitating, and coordinating a variety of food-focused events for our clients and organizations we are committed to through our volunteer work.
Designing and facilitating events has become a core part of our service offerings over the last ten years. Why events? From our clients’ perspectives, it’s the deep and broad scope of knowledge and long history of bringing unlikely people together around a table or into a room that makes them think of us when they want to explore new horizons or dig deep into a topic core to their mission.
Sometimes the events are public (like the 2015 City Harvest Leadership Summit and nine James Beard Foundation Food Summits) and some are by invitation only, such as the Learning Journey we produced for impact investors at Paicines Ranch this March or the events this month with PepsiCo’s North America Nutrition executives that are part of their food entrepreneurship learning tour (to see more about our Learning Journey and Salon offerings, click here). Other engagements are carefully designed programs that assist our clients to work through either tough issues or innovations. These have recently included our Hiring for Success workshops delivered by Dick Batten for his clients such as Open Door Family Medical Center and The New Museum, an internal design-thinking workshop for our clients Friends of the High Line, where we are in a two year process of redesigning their food program. Additionally, Shayna Cohen and Christophe Hille designed and facilitated a series of meetings that brought together horticulture and landscape businesses of a range of scales and with diverse areas of focus to design a registered apprenticeship program that could serve them all.
Last month, we also produced our first event with The New Food Economy, a film premiere and discussion about a topic near and dear to our hearts: women entrepreneurs. The film, From Farms to Incubators, had a special angle on this: immigrant women in AgTech. It’s a topic we expect to continue to explore. We have also produced a few of our own small events right here at KK&P’s offices, with our clients and community (and always a delicious lunch), to explore topics that are timely or especially pertinent for our work. Topics for these have included The Future of Food Philanthropy, Food & Health, and The Future of Food Education.
Speaking of the High Line (and how we bring unlikely subjects to the same table), we recently helped the Fund for Public Housing host the inaugural public and fundraising event, City Flavors, featuring food from graduates from the New York City Housing Authority’s (NYCHA) Food Business Pathways Program this July at the High Line. What better way to spend a warm summer evening than with a few hundred people who love food and want to support rising entrepreneurs?
We see events are the perfect way for our clients to explore new ways to engage with their constituents as they explore new directions for their work. Nothing replaces being in a room with other people—like-minded and perhaps less-so—to generate new ideas and solutions to tough challenges. If you’d like to explore how we can help you design and produce an event, drop me a line: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oh, and I do hope you get some time at the beach, in the mountains—wherever you like to be lazy—this summer.