The Sustainable Food Systems Lab Team

 

Director

Dr. Charles Z. Levkoe is the Canada Research Chair in Equitable and  Sustainable Food Systems, Member of the College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists of the Royal Society of Canada, Director of the Sustainable Food Systems Lab and a Professor in the Department of Health Sciences at Lakehead University. (Click for more)

 

Students, Community Researchers and Postdoctoral Fellows

Rachel Portinga is a PhD candidate at Lakehead University and a leader in the Lake Superior Living Labs Network. She is interested in promoting food security, food sovereignty, and sustainable actions through collaborations with universities, community partners, and policy-makers.

Kelsey Jones-Casey is a PhD student in Lakehead Universities Health Sciences program. For the past 15 years she has worked in the public and NGO sectors on issues at the intersection of climate change, land rights, and other structural inequities.

Roseann (Rosie) Kerr is a Post-Doctoral Fellow with a PhD in Education from Queen’s University.  She is working with Plenty Canada on an Indigenous-Led Food Security Pandemic Response Analysis and Knowledge Sharing project. She focuses her research in the role of peer-to-peer learning in building food sovereignty and community self-sufficiency in Mexico and Canada.

Dana Korten is a PhD student in Health Sciences at Lakehead University. She is interested in using a food sovereignty praxis to explore the interconnections between climate change, resource extraction, and colonial legacies in rural Yukon.

Liz Lovell is a Master of Health Sciences student at Lakehead University. They have a BS in Sociology from Illinois State University and are interested in health equity and disability justice, ecosystem ecology, and all things plants.

Johanna Wilkes (she/her) is a research assistant with the Sustainable Food Systems Lab at Lakehead University and a Ph.D. candidate at the Balsillie School of International Affairs. Her research focuses on how different policy environments tackle issues surrounding food systems, transformation, and sustainable futures. 
 
Evalisa McIllfaterick is an organic farmer and masters of Health Sciences student at Lakehead University. She is working with other farmer-researchers to develop a genetically diverse (landrace) watermelon that thrives in Ontario. She is interested in the connections between landrace seed breeding and an eco-social approach to health.
 
 
 
 
Courtney is a PhD candidate in Health Sciences at Lakehead University, acting as support for the Lake Superior Living Labs Network. She is a Metis woman from the Sault Ste Marie region, with particular interest in watershed stewardship models and their impacts on the health and wellbeing of the social and ecological community.
 

 

Past Students, Community Researchers and Postdoctoral Fellows

 

Trudi Zundel ws a PhD candidate in Geography at Carleton University and has worked with civil society organizations and social movements on international food, climate change, and technology governance since 2012. She has an MA in Geography from the University of Guelph and a BA in Human Ecology from College of the Atlantic.

Courtney completed a masters of Education with a portfolio titled, Decolonizing (for settlers): A pedagogical framework for enacting responsibilities. She graduated in 2021.

Vikki Schembri completed a masters of Health Sciences with a thesis titled, Planting the Seeds of Local Food Capacity in Northern, Provincial Canada: A Case Study of Community and Market Gardening Initiatives in Cumberland House, Saskatchewan. She graduated in 2021.

 

Dr. Julia Laforge was a Post Doctoral Fellow at Lakehead University, working in partnership with USC Canada.

Alexander Duncan was a masters of Science in Foresty candidate in the faculty of Natural Resources Management with a thesis titled, An Investigation into the Local and Traditional Ecological Knowledge of the Saugeen Ojibway Nation Regarding the Status of Ciscoes (Coregonus spp.) In Lake Huron. He has a history of fisheries, archaeology, and natural resource work with his home community, the Chippewas of Nawash First Nation in southwestern Ontario. He graduated in 2020. Click here to download Alex’s thesis.

Michaela Bohunicky is a Registered Dietitian and completed a masters of Health Sciences with a thesis titled, Confronting Settler Colonialism in Food Movements. She graduated in 2020. Click here to download Michaela’s thesis. 

Darya Parzei completed a masters of Education with a thesis titled, “A Hungry Child Can’t Learn, A Hungry Child Can’t Play”: The Perceived Impacts of Student Nutrition Programs on Student Well-Being and the Role of Policy in their Development and Implementatiom. She graduated in 2019. Click here to download Darya’s thesis.

 

Rachel Globensky is a Red Seal Chef, Nutrition Manager, and completed a masters of Health Sciences with a thesis titled, Exploring Cooking, Culture, and Equity in Collective Cooking Spaces: A Case Study of Roots to Harvest. She graduated in 2021.

Shadiya Aidid completed her masters of Health Sciences was a thesis titled, From Divestment to Climate Justice: Perspectives from University Fossil Fuel Divestment Campaigns. She graduated in 2022.

Veronica Paredes was a PhD Candidate at Lakehead University. She has carried out interdisciplinary work in the fields of national identity, intangible heritage and Visual Culture.

Sarah Siska completed her masters of Environmental Studies with a thesis titled, Toward Foodsheds: Reimagining Food Systems in the Lake Superior Watershed. She graduated in 2023.

Jessica is a member of the Long Lake 58 First Nation and grew up in Nakina, Ontario, she is an executive member with the Thunder Bay and Area Food Strategy, where she collaboratively assisted in the establishment of the Indigenous Food Circle.

Batool Fatima is a Master of Environmental Studies student at Lakehead University. Her major area of interest is food sovereignty, social justice and ecosystem restoration. Batool is also the founder of #beestobe social media campaign.

Maliheh Ghorbankhani is a Master of Science in Forestry student in the faculty of Natural Resources Management at Lakehead University. Her major areas of interest are identifying innovative solutions on farms, sustainable agriculture and food security.