Symposium presentations will be available to view throughout the 2020-21 academic year. Please note: the Kwame Onwuachi (“Notes from a Young Black Chef") video will only be available for viewing until Oct. 22.

View the sessions

"Food for Good"

We all share the act of eating. However, the topic of food is increasingly complex – especially as we become more distant from the sources of food. Food cultures have deep roots, rich heritage, and increasing diversity, but also inherent controversies associated with eating in a changing world. Gathering around the topic of food brings community as well as opportunities to engage diverse perspectives. Join us for this virtual event to explore "Food for Good," the 2020 topic of the Faith, Reason, and World Affairs symposium.

Confirmed Speakers

Kwame Onwuachi

Kwame Onwuachi, author of "Notes From a Young Black Chef," is the James Beard Award-winning executive chef at Kith/Kin in Washington, D.C. He trained at the Culinary Institute of America and opened five restaurants before turning 30. A former "Top Chef" contestant, he has been named Esquire’s Chef of the Year, one of Food & Wine’s Best New Chefs, and a 30 Under 30 honoree by both Zagat and Forbes.

Jonathan Bloom

Jonathan Bloom is a journalist, consultant, and thought leader on the topic of food waste. He is the author of the book "American Wasteland" and recently helped write the NRDC report "Wasted." He was featured in the documentary "Just Eat It." He is an advisory board member for Food Tank, ReFED, and Imperfect Produce.

Amy Thielen

Amy Thielen is a cook and a two-time James Beard Award-winning writer. The host of Food Network’s "Heartland Table" (2013-2014), she speaks and writes widely about home cooking in magazines and on public radio, and is a contributing editor at Saveur magazine.

Andrea Baumgartner

Andrea Baumgardner is the Baum in BernBaum’s, a bagel shop and restaurant in Fargo. A graduate of San Francisco’s California Culinary Academy and a 2015-16 Humphrey Fellow in Public Policy at the University of Minnesota, Baumgardner is committed to teaching children to cook as a form of justice. She is a 2020 semifinalist for Best Chef: Midwest from the James Beard Foundation. Andrea will be joined in conversation with Megan Myrdal ’09, M.S., R.D., co-founder/director of operations, Food of the North.

Sharon M. Day

Sharon M. Day, Ojibwe, is the executive director of the Indigenous Peoples Task Force. She is a writer, playwright, and water walker.

Dr. Amy Kircher

Dr. Amy Kircher is the senior advisor of the Food Protection and Defense Institute (FPDI), Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence, and a member of the Strategic Partnerships and Research Collaborative (SPARC) team. Dr. Kircher is also an assistant professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Minnesota. Her current research includes identification and warning of food disruptions through data fusion and analysis.

Daniel Klein

Daniel Klein is the director and producer behind the two-time James Beard Award-winning online documentary series, "The Perennial Plate." A former chef, Klein and his wife and co-producer, Mirra Fine, have created more than 200 short films. Their films have been shown in innumerable film festivals around the world and at the United Nations.

Jonathan Rutter

Jonathan Rutter, the executive director and curator of The Rourke Art Gallery + Museum in Moorhead, is the juror for the "Food Matters" art exhibit. He’s worked as a gallerist at both The Rourke and commercial galleries for more than 15 years. Rutter received his Bachelor of Arts degree in studio art with an emphasis in painting from Minnesota State University Moorhead and his Master of Fine Arts degree in painting from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia. Rutter maintains an active studio practice as a painter and lives with his wife, Cady, in Moorhead.