Many Hands Make Lighter Work

Madison Area Food Pantry Gardens, Inc. is pleased to announce two new team members for the summer, Emmi Lohrentz and David Hurd. Lohrentz began her summer tenure as the Witte-Schulte Intern in May while Hurd’s services as the organization’s first AmeriCorps Summer Associate began the second week of June. Both individuals will remain with the nonprofit organization through August.

Lohrentz is a current graduate student in UW-Madison’s Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work and is a life-long gardener born and raised in Madison. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Minnesota-Duluth before returning to the Madison area to teach early education in the public school system and later at the UW Child Development Lab. In these settings, Lohrentz taught toddlers and preschoolers about local food systems and planted the seeds for a future love of gardening utilizing school gardens. More recently, Lohrentz has shifted her professional attention toward social work.

Her combined interests in social work, teaching, food systems and gardening make Lohrentz an ideal fit for the first annual Witte-Schulte Internship. This position is funded by the family and friends of MAFPG cofounders Ken Witte and Emmett Schulte. In the spirit of these pioneers, the internship provides a student with the opportunity to glean hands-on experience managing volunteers, implementing educational programs, and assisting in the production of more than 50,000 pounds of culturally relevant produce for the emergency food system in Dane County.

Hurd is a recent graduate of Middleton High School who plans on attending the University of California-Davis this fall to study Molecular Biology and Biochemistry with a potential double major in Plant Biology. His interest in sustainable agriculture, past experience landscaping and involvement in community service are the groundwork for his success as an AmeriCorps Summer Associate with MAFPG.

Madison Area Food Pantry Gardens, Inc. is a Madison-based nonprofit with more than two decades of history in Dane County. Relying on the assistance of 700 volunteers, MAFPG gleans and grows more than 100,000 pounds of culturally relevant produce each year destined for the Dane County emergency food system. MAFPG has a presence in 11 locations through member gardens and affiliated gardens in Fitchburg, Madison, Middleton, Oregon and Verona. More information on the impact and mission of Madison Area Food Pantry Gardens, Inc. can be found at or by following MAFPG on Facebook and Instagram.