Cocktails & Conversations - How to Feed a Growing Planet

Event Location
The Health Museum

Join us for an exciting evening panel discussion exploring a variety of viewpoints on global food security. We'll explore food insecurity on a local level as well as food waste, malnutrition and sustainable solutions to the hunger crisis.

Panelists include Kathy Lipman from the Houston Food Bank, Gabriel Durham from the University of Houston Office of Sustainability, and Dr. Shreela Sharma from Brighter Bites.

Member Admission $10
General Admission - $15 

Tickets available here.


Kathy Lipman

Kathy Lipman came to the Houston Food Bank (HFB) in 2010 after 18 years of working as a television development/production executive in Los Angeles.  Her first 8 years at HFB was dedicated to launching and managing the Senior Box Program, which distributes boxes of nonperishable food each month to over 11,000 financially-challenged seniors in Harris, Fort Bend, Brazoria, and Montgomery Counties.  In her current role as Corporate Engagement Senior Manager, Kathy focuses on recruiting, engaging and appreciating our dedicated volunteer and corporate volunteer workforce that is instrumental in sorting, bagging and boxing the products that are delivered to our 1500 community partners and individuals throughout our 18-county service area.  With the support of our generous corporate and individual monetary donors; 84,501 individual volunteers; government programs; and ongoing group/individual food drive donations, last year HFB was able contribute to the community 104 million nutritious meals.  Kathy hopes that through “How to Feed a Growing Planet” each of you will recognize the growing need and choose to volunteer your time in support of the Houston Food Bank’s mission:  Food For Better Lives.


Gabriel Durham

Gabriel Durham presently serves at the University of Houston as their Sustainability Coordinator. His background in human adaptability research, along with many years of experience working to alleviate both urban and rural food deserts, provides a fully holistic understanding of the intricate resiliency challenges of the modern day. His current focus is on regenerative and urban agriculture.

Dr. Shreela Sharma

Dr. Shreela Sharma is Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Texas, School of Public Health in Houston, TX. Dr. Sharma is a behavioral epidemiologist with specific interest designing and evaluating sustainable, community-centric interventions to address food insecurity and childhood obesity in underserved populations and has a robust research program in this area. Dr. Sharma’s research in systems-approaches to mitigating food insecurity and prevent chronic disease. One example of this systems approach that Dr. Sharma developed is Brighter Bites, a program that converts food waste into a public health opportunity by purposefully channeling reclaimed produce using a food co-op concept along with nutrition education in school and at home to low-income children and families. Brighter Bites has been proven to improve food insecurity and dietary behaviors among participating children and their families. Brighter Bites is disseminated to over 20,000 families each year across Houston, Austin, Dallas, Washington DC, New York City, and Southwest Florida Dr. Sharma has also been engaged in development and evaluation of CATCH (Coordinated Approach to Child Health,, a Texas Education Agency approved coordinated school health program with proven obesity prevention effects among at-risk children. Dr. Sharma is also co-lead of the Greater Houston Coalition on Social Determinants of Health, a Harris-county wide effort focused on mitigating food insecurity among its residents. Dr. Sharma has a PhD in Epidemiology, masters in physical therapy and is a registered dietitian in the state of Texas.