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Kenden Alfond

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I’m a Jewish woman currently living in Cambodia with my husband and daughter.  (You can read about our weekly Shabbat dinners here)

When I was 12 years old, I chose to become a vegetarian (and now I’m a vegan).

After getting a MA in counseling psychology in 2005, I went to India as an American Jewish World Service (AJWS) volunteer.  Since then I have been living and working around the world on humanitarian, post-conflict, and development issues with the United Nations and several NGOs.

In 2013, I obtained a certificate in plant-based nutrition from Cornell University.  I started Jewish Food Hero to get healthier food onto Jewish tables around the world.

The inside reason Jewish Food Hero started is because I felt alone and wanted to belong to a healthy community.

The outside reason Jewish Food Hero is that I realized that there were lots of Jewish women trying to create healthier families, and I wanted to create a community around this common desire for Jewish health.

Jewish Food Hero focuses on Food, Feelings and Finding Peace.

Food:  One of those healthier choices I advocate for is centering your plate and diet around minimally-processed plant foods, which include vegetables, fruits, tubers, whole grains, and legumes (and excludes meat, dairy, eggs, and highly processed foods).

Feelings: feelings about food and eating, feelings about positive relationships, and everything else!

Finding Peace: inspiring personal stories, interviews with a Jewish women living all over the world, self-Support tools, educational lifestyle tips, and beautiful products for your life.

Inclusive of all religions and cultures, I highlight Jewish traditions in particular.

The Jewish Food Hero is not a single person, but a female archetype that calls out to the healthy heroine within each of us. It’s here to challenge you to transform your relationship with your mind, body, and spirit to create a new and healthy future for our world.

When I am not working on Jewish Food Hero, I am working as a psychotherapist and helping out at this school.

Please feel free to email me anytime at hello@jewishfoodhero.com or to join me on Instagram and Facebook.


Dr. Daniel Seidman, DO

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Sports Medicine & Family Medicine


Dr. Seidman attended medical school at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, FL. He returned home to Metro Detroit to complete his Family Medicine training at St. John Macomb-Oakland, where he was Chief Resident. He then completed a fellowship in Sports Medicine at Henry Ford Hospital. 


Dr. Seidman sees patients and teaches at Henry Ford Detroit Northwest. He is accepting new patients in both Sports Medicine and Family Medicine.

Care Philosophy: "I enjoy helping my patients become the healthiest versions of themselves. I emphasize the importance of healthy lifestyle changes, physical activity, and a non-processed plant-based diet both as a means of managing chronic disease and maintaining overall health. My practice includes both family medicine and sports medicine."

Kavitha Chinnaiyan MD


Dr. Kavitha Chinnaiyan is an integrative cardiologist at Beaumont Health System and Associate Professor of Medicine at Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine in Royal Oak, Michigan. She has published extensively in cardiovascular imaging, leading national and international multicenter trials to establish the best practice and applications of these technologies. She has been featured in the “Best Doctors of America” and has served on several national and international committees. She has been a spokesperson for the American Heart Association and served as the co-chair of “Go Red for Women” sponsored by the American Heart Association. She has won several awards and grants for research in cardiology, and was awarded the “Seeker of Truth” award for her research endeavors. She appears often on local and national radio and television and routinely gives invited talks on cardiac imaging, heart disease in women, Ayurveda, medicine and spirituality, and yoga for heart disease.

Jamie Qualls, D.O., M.P.H.

Jamie is a Family Medicine Resident Physician in the St. John Providence Hospital System. She has over 10 years of experience in plant-based nutrition and she is passionate about improving community and population health. In her practice, Jamie considers the plant-based diet to be optimal for the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases. Jamie is also a leader of the PBNSG plant-based curriculum committee and helped review over 200 studies illustrating the relationship between food and chronic diseases.



Educational Background:

Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, Michigan State University: 2017

Master of Public Health, Michigan State University: 2017

Bachelor of Business Administration: Western Michigan University: 2004

Philosophy of Care:

“I want to help give every one of my patients their very best shot at a happy, healthy life. Each of us is in the driver’s seat when it comes to our own health destiny. This is not taught in medical school, unfortunately, but the science is clear - there is no better way to ensure a disease-free life than by being consistently mindful about what we eat. My goal is to make sure my patients understand the power of plant-based foods to maintain and restore health. If I can help others discover the joy of investing in their health and making good choices, I’ve fulfilled my life mission.”

Debra Walter

I have been on my vegetarian journey since I was newly married about 30 years ago. I started teaching cooking classes and specializing in vegetarian/vegan/gluten free 5 years ago. My diet consists of mostly vegetables, grains, nuts, seeds and fruit.

My passion is baking and turning butter and cream filled desserts into vegan and vegan/gluten free goodies.

I am a personal chef specializing in vegetarian cooking and vegan/ gluten free baking. I love to create menus for individuals and families and introducing them to delicious plant based eating.

I am a graduate of the Culinary Institute Of American, Lenore’s Natural Cuisine and Fran Dresher’s Vegan Boot Camp Baking Camp.

I have a vegan granola company named after my son Max Walter and you can find my granola at www.debrasfoods.com.

Please contact me at chefveggi@aol.com for any questions or personal chef services. I look forward to talking with you.

Del Sroufe

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Del Sroufe‘s passion for cooking began at eight years old and never faded.  In 1989 he went to work for one of Columbus’ premier vegetarian restaurants, the King Avenue Coffeehouse, where he honed his craft as a baker and chef. Sroufe opened Del’s Bread, a vegan bakery, before beginning vegan meal delivery service in 2001, serving eclectic plant-based cuisine to Columbus residents. During this time, he developed what became a very popular cooking class series, sharing many of the delicious recipes he had created over the years.

In 2006, Sroufe joined Wellness Forum Foods as co-owner and chef, where he continued the tradition of delivering great tasting, plant-based meals to clients in Columbus as well as throughout the continental US. Sroufe also joined The Wellness Forum as a member where, after a lifetime of yo-yo dieting, he has lost over 200 pounds on a low fat, plant-based diet. He continues to teach cooking classes at local venues like Whole Foods, Community Recreation Centers, and The Wellness Forum. Sroufe is the author of The China Study: Quick & Easy Cookbook, The China Study Family Cookbook, Better Than Vegan, and Forks Over Knives—The Cookbook, a vegan cookbook companion to the acclaimed documentary Forks Over Knives.


Patricia Ode

Patricia started her health journey at the age of 5. For twenty years she suffered through a laundry list of disease, chronic illness, doctors, pills, and surgeries. It wasn't until Patricia considered her diet that she found true health. 

Over the last three years Patricia went from eating the standard American diet to living a Fully Raw Vegan lifestyle and has reversed all of her health issues through diet , herbal remedies, and exercise. Patricia practices yoga and has found a love for running. 

Patricia has been coaching individuals on finding their path of truth health through diet and exercise. She has become a certified plant-based nutritionist through the T. Colin Campbell center for Nutrition Studies and plans on furthering her education these next few years. Through her journey, Patricia has also found an intense love for the raw culinary world. Raw Vegan meals, sauces, treats, and cakes are her specialty. 


Here's how you can connect with Patricia:

Facebook:  Patricia Tamara Ode https://m.facebook.com/patriciatamaraode?ref=bookmarks

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Kailo Nuitrition


Heather Borders

Chief Empowerment Officer

Heather Borders has over 15 years of professional experience spanning curriculum development, training, medical device marketing, sales and customer support, product management, product development, and market development. After a personal experience with addressing high cholesterol through a plant-based diet, she was inspired to help others improve their health by overcoming the common challenges associated with implementing sustainable lifestyle changes.


In 2012, Heather founded Kailo Nutrition and is dedicated to applying her professional experience and personal passion for healthy living towards health, wellness, plant-based nutrition, and preventative medicine. Partnered with Chef Lisa, she currently runs plant-based culinary nutrition and wellness classes in Jacksonville, Florida and launching a women’s retreat for health and performance in Cumberland Island, Georgia this May 2017. She describes herself as an ambitious, curious, energetic, science-loving, goal-setting, entrepreneurial type person who is loving every moment of helping others find ways to make healthy happen. Heather Borders, MBA, RD, LD/N


Lisa Franzino

Director, Culinary Empowerment

Chef Lisa is a graduate of Living Light Culinary Institute, a Gourmet Raw Culinary School. She also holds certificates from Rouxbe Cooking School as a plant-based chef and from Drs. Rick and Karin Dina as a Science of Raw Nutrition Educator.


A lifelong vegetarian, Lisa dove deeper into healing through diet after a cancer diagnosis in her twenties. Adopting a whole food, plant-based diet, along with a regular yoga practice, has helped her stay cancer-free for almost 20 years.


It is Lisa’s firm belief that eating healthy can be easy, satisfying and most importantly, DELICIOUS. It is her passion to teach others how to create meals that are not only packed with nutrients, but also taste good, so that they can make a lifestyle shift to a healthy diet WITHOUT sacrificing flavor. She manages her blog, Ginger Loves Garlic, and lives with her furry child, Max.

Sue Stauffacher

I’ve been eating a plant-centered diet since I was 19 years old, and I love to share my skills in my vegan & vegetarian cooking classes with students of all ages. A plant-based diet (that is, a diet primarily composed of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds) can lessen your risk of heart disease, diabetes, obesity and some cancers. Eating all the wonderful nutrients in these foods helps you lose weight, strengthen your immune system, improve your sleep and energy levels and brings a new glow to your skin. Big claims, I know, but they are all backed by medical science In class, I teach you how to create delicious taste experiences with healthy food. My motto is ‘food you love that loves you back.’ When I’m not working on children’s books (www.suestauffacher.com), I cook, cater and teach individuals and families how to cook low-fat, plant-based recipes in your kitchen as well as at our 150+ year old farmhouse in Grand Rapids. You will be amazed at how filling, delicious and satisfying this food can be.

My classroom style is relaxed and supportive. Each student is encouraged to explore what works for his or her palate. To show students how delicious vegan and vegetarian cooking can be, I bring lots of samples to class and organize supper clubs and idea salons, guide people to resources and promote healthy ways of eating and being-especially here in our beautiful geographic location of West Michigan.Listen to a great three-minute audio interview about my classes (http://www.therapidian.org/stirring-pot-sue-stauffacher) with Theresa Hogerheide, of MI Local Foodbeet (https://www.facebook.com/MIlocalfoodbeet). As a plant-based chef educator, I help people learn to cook and love food that loves them back.

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My services include:

Healthy Eating Assessment

Cooking Instruction

Prepping & Shopping Services

Incorporating New Dietary Restrictions

The Gift of Food as Medicine

Visit my website to inquire (http://www.stirthepotgr.com/services)

The best news is that I work hard to keep my fees in line with most people’s budgets. Contact me outlining your goals, and we’ll find the approach that will work within your budget and time constraints. Curious what others are saying about working with Sue? Click here to read customer testimonials! (http://www.stirthepotgr.com/testimonials/).

I love plant-based eating for the big three reasons:  ethics, health and the environment.   I want people to know that they can come to our home and explore this way of eating joyfully and safely.  There is no pressure and no judgement.  When approached this way, people have fun, relax and learn, try out new skills and go at their own pace. 

Similarly, my classroom style is relaxed and supportive.  Each student is encouraged to explore what works for his or her palate.  We do a lot of tasting!  One of the best ways to learn, I have found, is through our supper club.  For five years now, my husband and I have been hosting a monthly vegan supper club.  Anyone is welcome.  You can find out all the information for supper club here:  


Laura Theodore

Laura Theodore is a recognized public television personality, vegan chef, radio host, cookbook author, and award-winning actor and recording artist. Laura is the on-camera host of the highly successful, award-winning Jazzy Vegetarian plant-based cooking series on public television (entering into its sixth season), as well as, host of the popular podcast radio show, Jazzy Vegetarian Radio, (now in its eighth year).

 Ms. Theodore is author of Laura Theodore's Vegan-Ease: An Easy Guide to Enjoying a Plant-Based Diet and two previous cookbooks: Jazzy Vegetarian Classics: Vegan Twists on American Family Favorites and Jazzy Vegetarian: Lively Vegan Cuisine Made Easy and Delicious. She is a major contributor to The China Study All-Star Collection; and Laura’s recipes can also be found in the Amazon number one bestseller, Living the Farm Sanctuary Life, by Gene Baur.

In 2015, Laura was recipient of the 2015 Taste Award for Best Health and Fitness Program (Food and Diet), and she was inducted into the Taste Hall of Fame. In 2014, Laura was honored with a “Special Achievement Taste-Award” along with the likes of Martha Stewart and Emeril Lagasse; she has also been recognized by VegNews magazine with a “Totally Tubular Veggie Award.”

Laura is featured in the new, groundbreaking documentary film, Food Choices, released in September, 2016. In addition, Laura has made guest appearances on ABC, NBC, CBS and FOX, and was recently featured on The Talk on CBS, Insider/Entertainment Tonight (HBO Red Carpet), News 4-NBC, Fox News 8, The Better Show (BVN) and the WCBS Health & Wellbeing Report. Laura writes a weekly food column for Mother Earth Living and she has been featured in the New York Times, New York Daily News, VegNews, Family Circle, Readers Digest, PBS Food, Naked Food and Healthy Aging, among other highly respected news, food and lifestyle-related journals.

A critically acclaimed singer and songwriter, Laura has recorded six solo CDs, including Tonight's the Night, which received a “Musician Magazine Award.” Her 2009 CD release with the late, great Joe Beck entitled Golden Earrings, was selected to appear on the 52nd Annual GRAMMY Awards list in the category of “Best Jazz Vocal Album.” On the acting side of things, Laura has appeared in over sixty plays and musicals, including two years in the Off Broadway hit show Beehive, earning her a coveted “Backstage Bistro Award.” She was honored with the Denver Critics Drama Circle Award as “Best Actress in a Musical” for her starring role as Janis Joplin in the world premiere production of Love, Janis.
With her love for good food, compassion for animals and enthusiasm for great music, multi-talented author Laura Theodore truly is the Jazzy Vegetarian.



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