Professional Experience

Freelance writer and editor with 20 years of journalism experience and a wide range of interests and expertise including but not limited to: urbanism, Midwest history and culture, feminism, food and cooking, urban agriculture, books and publishing, theater and dance, and urban history.

Freelance Writer

  • Author of the critically acclaimed Soup & Bread Cookbook: Building Community One Pot at a Time (Agate Publishing, 2011)
  • Journalist and critic published in the Chicago Reader, the Chicago Reporter, Crain’s Chicago Business, Buzzfeed, Eater, the Rumpus, the Baffler, and San Juan’s Centro de Periodismo Investigativo, among other outlets.
  • City Bureau team leader (2017)
  • Social Justice News Nexus fellow (2015)
  • Contributing writer for the Chicago Community Trust website (2016-present)
  • Contributing writer, The Chicago Guide for Teaching and Learning in the Arts (2009), a curriculum guide published by Chicago Public Schools.
  • Contributing writer, Insight Guide to Chicago. 

Freelance Editor

  • Senior editor for Belt Publishing, including manuscripts by Elizabeth Catte, Ryan Schnurr, Aaron Foley, and others. Have also edited books for Curbside Splendor and Theater Oobleck.
  • Anthology editor, Rust Belt Chicago: An Anthology (2017), Red State Blues: Tales of Midwestern Life on the Left (2018), and The Chicago Neighborhood Guidebook (2019)
  • Editor in chief, Belt Magazine (2014-2016)
  • Associate managing editor, Plate (2012-2014)
  • Copy editor, Chicago Tribune (2010-2012)
  • Editor, Go to 2040 Food Systems Report for the Chicago Metropolitan Region (2009), commissioned by the Chicago Community Trust and the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning.
  • Senior Editor, Chicago Reader. Over ten years at the Chicago Reader I worked closely with freelance writers and editorial staff to develop, copy edit, and fact check features, news stories, and arts reviews for Chicago’s largest alternative weekly. Served as books editor, special projects editor, and restaurants editor. As a staff writer I compiled a weekly arts calendar, and wrote features on a wide range of subjects, including urban history, food and urban agriculture, the restaurant industry, and the local literary scene, as well as book reviews, restaurant reviews, and service copy as needed. Clips available.

Project Management

I have organized and managed many public events, from Soup & Bread benefits for more than 300 people to large-scale theatrical projects involving multiple stakeholders and logistics across disciplines.

Teaching and Public Speaking

Staff: I’m currently associate editor in the Social Justice News Nexus program at Medill School of Journalism, mentoring teams of graduate students and professional journalists as they collaborate on group reporting projects around social justice issues. I also manage the SJNN website and social media.

Guest lecturer: Columbia College Chicago, Northwestern University School of Continuing Studies, Harold Washington College, Young Chicago Authors.

Speaker: Re-Thinking Soup (Jane Addams Hull-House Museum), Cafe Society (WBEZ and the Public Square), Of Other Chicagos salon series (ThreeWalls gallery), World Kitchen series (City of Chicago). Many radio appearances.


Oberlin College, BA in philosophy 1990
Certificate program in manuscript editing, University of Chicago School of General Studies, 1995
Master Gardener certification, University of Illinois Extension (2007)

References available on request.