Who are you?
I’m Christina Ferroli, PhD, RDN, FAND. I am Grants Program Coordinator with Indiana Cooperative Development Center. I’m from Carmel, Indiana.
How long have you worked with cooperatives?
Only six months!
Describe your role.
I coordinate the work of the Indiana Farmers Market Community of Practice. I manage the day-to-day activities, and I coordinate meetings, webinars, and email communications, along with maintaining the website and social media. Our website is currently under construction, and we will be launching soon, along with our social media! I view my job as helping make connections with farmers market managers, farmers, and market vendors across the state of Indiana.
I especially like the work of food cooperatives. I am a Registered Dietitian, and I am Italian, so it’s all about the food for me! Food cooperatives are powerful models in that they empower a group of individuals to invest in and improve the food scene in a community by making fresh food more accessible! Local food businesses could really use some shaking up and infusion of new ideas and ways of doing business. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought that into focus, yet I don’t see much innovation happening, yet, except via AI – robot waiters to the rescue? I prefer the personal touch and food cooperatives definitely would bring that to the table!
When did you join CCA? Why?
I just recently joined CCA because I enjoy writing and communicating. I always want to hone my communication skills. I have worked for a nationally published magazine; been published and quoted in newspapers; assisted production of a private health TV show; and have been a guest on TV noon news and on local radio all on the topics of food, nutrition, health and food safety. My new interest is in podcasts and how they can reach a large audience base and influence people. As a health professional, I have an interest in launching my own podcast on food, nutrition and health, but with a flair on fun.
Did anything surprise you about CCA upon joining?
I find the collective talent amazing. I am looking forward to the learning and networking possibilities.
What are your hobbies and interests?
I enjoy traveling to different places, countries and learning about different cultures, foods, and traditions. I have cruised the Eastern Caribbean, traveled to China on a People-to-People Foods and Nutrition Study Program, and visited 26 of our states. I love to bake, but have to make gluten-free baked goods, which don’t always come out how I planned. My favorite food is Italian, of course! I am an avid reader and enjoy a variety of literary genre, and my most favorite author is Adriana Trigiani.
Do you have a “bucket list”? What are some of the things on that list?
My bucket list is travel-focused. I would like to visit the remaining 24 US states that I haven’t been to, along with a Route 66 road trip. I also want to travel more in Europe, especially, to Spain and Greece. South America also piques my interest, and visiting Cuba is up there on my bucket list!
Give us something about yourself that is surprising or that most people don’t know.
I was not born in the U.S. but in a U.S. Army Hospital in Germany! I don’t speak German, however, I am fluent in Italian.