MEEt the Distribution Team

   Our team assembles over 1,000 food boxes every week! We are lovers of vegetables and fruits, we care for each other, and we are passionate about
  healthy food access being a right for all. Together, we make this dream a reality.

   Our Team

Natalie Espinoza 

Director of Food Access Community Outreach 

Originally from California, Natalie has called Denver home since 2014. She is starting her journey to become a certified Nutritional Therapist and currently holds a certificate in Herbalism.Natalie enjoys learning about traditional folk medicine and how we can apply it in this time of age. She believes that through education about plant medicine and food, we can individually take control of our health.Natalie is looking forward to learning about permaculture and aquaculture, how it works, and how she can apply it to everyday life. She believes that food should be accessible and affordable for everyone and is excited to become a member of the Food Box Program. She enjoys tending to her home garden, loves every minute of being a mother, and can usually be found outdoors.

Valerie Ibañez

Senior Product Manager 

Valerie left her island, Puerto Rico, six years ago to follow one of her passions. Her connection with food started at an early age in her grandma’s kitchen, cooking with her mom and aunts, exchanging stories, and sharing laughs. After Studying at August Escoffier School of Culinary Arts in a farm-to-table program in Boulder, she dove into the restaurant industry to absorb everything she could about food and experience working in all sorts of kitchens. Since then, her relationship with food has expanded, and as a Certified Yoga Instructor and Holistic Wellness Coach, her approach has become much more holistic. She truly believes that every person has the right to nourishing food. She trusts that empowering people to experiment in their gardens and kitchens not only will it transform their approach to food but their relationship with the world.

Maria Elena Soterani

Assistant Manager Food Access 

Maria Elena is a loving mother to Antonella and Natalia and the wife of Edinson.  She loves life. She is a proactive person, a life-long learner, a hard worker, and capable of achieving anything life puts in front of her without doing harm to anyone else. She values friendship and the trust of other people. Her work life has changed a lot since she started working with The GrowHaus. She is grateful for how we work as a team, for the job stability and the support she has received from The GrowHaus. To summarize, she feels very grateful!

Angelo Gallo 

Food Access Coordinator 

Angelo was born in Venezuela. Angelo came to the US in 2016 at only 17 years old. He is happy and proud of being part of The Growhaus. Angelo likes to learn and the organization has helped him grow in his professional career, he started as part of the packaging team and later became a food access coordinator, food justice is important to him since he believes that we all have the right to have healthy food in our homes and teach people the importance of a balanced diet. Helping the community is an honor for him since he feels connected to all the people.

Leticia Marin

Food Access Associate 

Leticia, a native of Zacatecas, Mexico, has been a resident of the United States for over three decades. Her passion for providing food to those in need inspired her to join The GrowHaus team. Leti is a dedicated learner and has honed her skills in quality control. She is a valued member of our team who thrives in our positive work environment. Through her work, she feels connected to the community, as she assists in packing fresh food boxes that are delivered to families' homes.Her commitment to ensuring everyone has access to nutritious food underscores the importance of healthy food equity. We're grateful to have Leti as a part of our team, helping us make a positive impact in the lives of those we serve.

Modesta Barrales Gomez 

Food Access Associate 

Modesta, a native of Mexico, has been living in the 80216 community for the past 25 years. She's passionate about healthy living and firmly believes that access to healthy food is a basic human right. She enjoys the collaborative work environment and the many benefits she receives as an employee, such as access to fresh produce and supportive work culture. When it comes to her favorite foods, Modesta is all about fruits and veggies. She loves bananas and grapes for their natural sweetness and nutritional value, and she can't get enough of beets and sweet potatoes, which she says are versatile and delicious. Her all-time favorite dish is a hearty chicken vegetable soup, which she makes from scratch using ingredients from The GrowHaus. Overall, Modesta is grateful for the opportunity to work at The GrowHaus and make a difference in her community. She believes that by promoting healthy eating and sustainable food practices, we can create a better future for ourselves and our planet.

Elisa Contreras

Food Access Associate 

Elisa, a native of Mexico, finds working at The GrowHaus to be an incredibly rewarding experience as it allows her to work with fresh fruits and vegetables, learn about their benefits, and discover new healthy recipes. For Elisa, helping her neighbors in the 80216 community is a deeply fulfilling experience. She feels proud to be a part of an organization that values food justice and sees it as a fundamental human right. When it comes to her favorite foods, Elisa loves grapes, and her favorite vegetable is potatoes because of their versatility and comforting taste. Overall, Elisa feels grateful to work at The GrowHaus, where she can contribute to a cause that is close to her heart and make a meaningful difference in her community.

Maria Castro 

Food Access Associate 

Maria, a native of León, Guanajuato-Mexico, is driven by her passion for promoting healthy living and improving the well-being of her community. That's why working at The GrowHaus, where the organization's purpose aligns with her values, has been a perfect fit for her.  Through her work at The GrowHaus, she feels empowered to help make this a reality for her community. When it comes to her favorite foods, Maria loves fresh and juicy fruits like mango, watermelon, and strawberries, which are packed with nutrients and flavor. She also enjoys broccoli and carrots, which are not only delicious but versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes. Maria's favorite dishes are traditional Mexican foods like enchiladas and tacos, which remind her of her roots and bring her comfort. She looks forward to continuing to work towards a healthier and more equitable future for everyone.

Patricia Gutierrez 

Food Access Associate 

Patricia was born in Durango, Mexico.  She enjoys being part of the team and the camaraderie that comes with it. Patricia has been a resident of the 80216 community for 23 years and takes pride in being able to help her neighbors gain access to fresh and healthy food.  Watermelon tops her list of favorite fruits for its refreshing taste, while broccoli is her go-to vegetable for its versatility. But when it comes to her favorite dish, nothing beats a homemade picadillo con chile rojo.

Graciela Barrera 

Food Access Associate 

Graciela, working alongside her supportive coworkers, feels a sense of solidarity that motivates her to do her best every day. For Graciela, packing boxes of fresh produce for her neighbors in need is a task she takes great pleasure in, knowing that she is making a difference in the lives of others. Having grown up in Guadalajara, Graciela has always appreciated the value of fresh and healthy foods. That's why she loves working at The GrowHaus, where she can help provide access to nutritious produce to those who need it most. Her favorite fruits are sweet and juicy apples and peaches, and she enjoys classic Mexican dishes like enchiladas and tacos, as well as rice and beans. With her passion for helping others and love of good food, Graciela is an invaluable member of The GrowHaus team.


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