Karen Washington

New York City urban gardener Karen Washington will present a lecture titled “Community Gardening and Social Justice” on Tuesday, Feb. 16, at 4:15 p.m., in the Red Pit, KJ. The lecture is sponsored by the Days-Massolo Center and is free and open to the public.

A lifetime New Yorker, Washington has worked with Bronx neighborhoods to turn empty lots into community gardens. As an advocate, she has stood up and spoken out for garden protection and preservation. She is a board member of the New York Botanical Gardens and a member of the La Familia Verde Community Garden Coalition, where she has helped launched a City Farms Market, bringing garden fresh vegetables to her neighbors.

Washington is also a Just Food board member and Just Food Trainer, where she leads workshops on food growing and food justice for community gardeners all over the city, and a board member and former president of the New York City Community Garden Coalition, a group that was founded to preserve community gardens.

Washington is co-founder of Black Urban Growers (BUGS), an organization of volunteers committed to building networks and community support for growers in both urban and rural settings. In 2012 Ebony magazine voted her one of their 100 most influential African Americans in the country, and in 2014 she was awarded with the James Beard Leadership Award.

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