Hilary Baum is the Director of Baum Forum and President of Public Market Partners, a not-for-profit corporation established in 1991. For 15 years, as a producer of educational seminars, multi-day conferences and special events focusing on food, farming and markets, she has advanced the dialogue on critical issues among industry professionals and culinary students, market managers and family farmers, government officials and concerned citizens. She recently completed her term as founding Coordinating Director of Food Systems Network NYC, a collaborative effort of government agencies, non profits and individuals to further access to fresh and healthy food in all NYC neighborhoods and to strengthen the regional farm and food economy.
Baum has been involved in the development of farmers’ and public markets,
agricultural marketing programs, and community supported agriculture. Beginning
with her tenure as founding director of The Public Market Collaborative at
Project for Public Spaces in 1987, she consulted nationally with market sponsors
and municipalities on strategies for creating and improving markets for downtown
revitalization and to stem the tide of local agricultural decline.
The Baum Forum, a program of Public Market Partners, was launched in 1999 at the Culinary Institute of America. After a second multi-day conference there in 2000, the Baum Forum’s third major educational event on food and farming moved to New York City. In fall of 2002, more than 400 people attended A Growing Concern, a weekend of conference sessions, culinary workshops, and The Metropolitan Marketplace, a regional tasting. The Forum’s 2004 -2006 programs were held at The Graduate Center, CUNY, concluding with a sold-out major conference, Schools and Food: Innovation, Opportunity and Wellness.
Baum has launched several small food enterprises, developed and supervised production of food products, created national and regional brands, and consulted on numerous food marketing and merchandising ventures. Her projects are always ahead of the trend and she is recognized as an industry leader, challenging assumptions about our food sources, food quality and food safety.
Hilary Baum is the co-author of Public Markets and Community Revitalization (1994), The Lifespice Cookbook (1985) and the Map and Guide to Riverside Park (1983). She is currently an advisor to The New York City Wholesale Farmers’ Market Feasibility Study and Cornell University’s Community, Food and Agriculture Program. She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Cornell University (English) and studied at Parsons School of Design (Environmental Design) and City College of New York, CUNY (Urban Landscape). She is a member of Les Dames D’Escoffier International, Chefs Collaborative, and Slow Food USA, board member of Earth Environmental Group, Friends of Van Cortlandt Park, Hawthorne Valley Association, and founder of the Riverdale CSA. She lives in the Bronx with her husband Richard Stein, a community newspaper publisher, and has two grown children.
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