Guided by a love of food, family, and community and her passion for social change, Laquanda Dobson has been active in local, national, and international youth empowerment and social justice organizing since she was sixteen. Born and raised in Philadelphia, she is known for creating and building lasting relationships, filling stomachs, and warming hearts with her cooking. Her love of food and culinary arts has taken her from being a prep cook, catering events, and teaching kids, adults and seniors how to prepare recipes that are affordable, healthy, easy, accessible, and delicious. Recently she has followed her heart’s pull towards cooking for Black farmers and exploring the flavors of the African Diaspora.
A Philadelphia-area native, Kristin Schwab is passionate about using her love of food and cooking to build community, dismantle oppression, and work towards collective liberation. As a woman of Irish, Pennsylvania Dutch, and German descent, she is deeply committed to uprooting white supremacy. Her life’s journey has taken her from being a cook who uses food to build bridges and tear down walls to being a trainer who facilitates group collaboration, communication, and analyses of systems of power. She currently works at the Philadelphia Area Cooperative Alliance organizing 20 Book Clubs, 20 Cooperative Businesses. During her many years working with foodways and social justice in Philadelphia, she has taught intergenerational cooking classes, trained young people as community chefs, and directed the Urban Nutrition Initiative's award-winning Youth Empowerment Program.
Since 2007, Laquanda Dobson and Kristin Schwab have worked closely to cook up change; their love of cooking and its power to bring people together connected them then and continues to connect them daily