Akua Woolbright

Akua Woolbright, PhD, Nutrition Program Director, Whole Cities Foundation

Dr. Akua Woolbright is an expert in teaching people how to use plant-based foods to help prevent and reverse disease, and that is the passion she brings to her work.

Dr. Woolbright joined the Whole Foods Market corporate offices in Austin, TX in 2009 where she helped to create and implement the company’s national healthy eating program.

Akua Woolbright moved to Michigan 4-years ago to help lead the company’s community engagement efforts that took place prior to the store opening in Midtown Detroit. Whole Foods Market decided to formalize the “Community First” principles, and other best practices, that were born out of the Detroit team’s groundbreaking work by creating its 3rd Foundation. Whole Cities Foundation’s mission is to increase access to fresh, healthy foods and quality nutrition education in 5 select cities around the country: Detroit, MI; Englewood (on the Southside of Chicago); Jackson, MS; New Orleans, LA; and Newark, NJ.  Akua became the founding member and Nutrition Program Director of Whole Cities Foundation in 2014. In addition to teaching weekly classes in Newark, NJ and the Englewood community in Chicago, Akua currently runs the foundation’s Let’s Talk Food Nutrition and Culinary Education Center in Midtown Detroit where hundreds of students attend healthy eating lectures, cooking demonstrations, and support groups each week. 

Prior to joining Whole Foods Market in 2009, Dr. Akua Woolbright lived in Washington, D.C., where she received her PhD in nutritional science from Howard University and worked as a public health nutritionist in the areas of breastfeeding promotion, cancer prevention and survival, HIV/AIDS treatment, weight loss, asthma, and international childhood malnutrition.