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Urban Farmer Will Allen to Speak at Georgia Southern

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STATESBORO, Ga. (March 26, 2015) — Will Allen, a former professional basketball player turned urban farmer, will be the featured speaker at the Center for Sustainability’s (CFS) seminar series on Thursday, April 2, at 7 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center (PAC).

Since 1993, Allen has been on a mission to bring fruits and vegetables to America’s food deserts, areas where people don’t have access to fresh fruits, vegetables and other healthy foods. In order to accomplish this mission, he founded Growing Power Inc., a non-profit urban farm that has garnered him national attention and awards.

“Will Allen brings to Georgia Southern his world class leadership in developing a just and fair food system that guarantees access to high quality food for all,” said Lissa Leege, director of the Center for Sustainability. “Our community has a growing interest in healthy, sustainable food and we have  much to learn from this international leader in how to grow food, grow jobs and grow hope.”

Allen is a member of the Clinton Global Initiative, which gathers leaders from around the world to tackle the world’s most pressing problems. He was awarded the MacArthur Foundation “Genius Grant” in 2008, and named one of Time Magazine’s 100 “World’s Most Influential People” in 2010. That same year, he stood with first lady Michelle Obama at the White House to launch the “Let’s Move!” initiative, a national campaign to reverse childhood obesity.

Growing Power now has farms in Milwaukee, Madison and Merton, Wisconsin, and Chicago, Illinois. Additionally, the company has satellite training sites in Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky and Mississippi. At each site, the company provides hands-on training and demonstrations in a variety of farming techniques, from composting and pest control to the raising of fish and other aquatic life.

In addition to his farming and outreach efforts, Allen co-authored the book, The Good Food Revolution: Growing Healthy Food, People and Communities, with Charles Wilson. The book was nominated for a 2013 NAACP Image Award in the category of biography/autobiography.

This event is free and open to the public, and attendance verification will be provided for students. Student sustainability fees at work!

Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 125-degree programs serving more than 20,500 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement. Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered and hands-on approach to education. www.GeorgiaSouthern.edu.

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