Amber K. Stott
Founder and Chief Food Genius of Food Literacy Center
Passionate about fruits and veggies, Amber grew up cooking and growing her own food, a joy she wants every child to experience.
In 2011, Amber responded to the rising childhood obesity crisis by starting the nonprofit Food Literacy Center to inspire children to eat their vegetables. The nonprofit does this by teaching cooking and nutrition classes to low-income elementary kids, helping them develop healthy habits that will last a lifetime. What makes the nonprofit unique is Amber’s work to build a behavior change model into the existing local food movement. Within just three months of food literacy classes, the nonprofit changes kids’ attitudes towards healthy foods—the first step towards long-term behavior change.
With two decades of nonprofit management experience, Amber has raised $5.5 million for local charities and is the vision behind Food Literacy Center’s dramatic growth in its short history: expanding from 1 school to 8 in only four years, and poised to develop a teaching kitchen, garden and farm learning center on the community’s low-income Leataata Floyd Elementary School campus—a project slated to open in late 2017. Learn more.
Amber designed the agency’s curriculum and Food Literacy Academy training for community members to become food literacy instructors. She worked with California Assemblymember Roger Dickinson to pass a resolution declaring September “Food Literacy Month” in the state, and oversaw its passage in Yolo and Sacramento Counties and City of Sacramento. She helped design the Sacramento Food Film Festival, which combines public education through food documentaries with hands-on culinary experiences.
Amber also writes for Edible Sacramento and Comstock’s magazines. She was named 40 Under 40 by Sacramento Business Journal, Food Revolution Hero by Jamie Oliver Food Foundation, one of Food Tank’s 20 Innovators Protecting the Planet, Social Entrepreneur of the Year by New Leader’s Council Sacramento, and a TEDx Sacramento Fellow. View her TEDx Talk here.
Amber is devoted to community volunteerism that leads to a healthier food system. She helped develop a local food policy council and is on the steering committee for America’s Farm-to-Fork Capital.
Amber holds a Master’s degree in African Studies and Women’s Studies from the University of Illinois-Champaign-Urbana. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the same university in Comparative Literature and Women’s Studies, graduating with distinction. She speaks Danish and Zulu.
“Where I grew up, in rural Illinois, eating locally wasn’t a movement. It was just how people lived. I want everyone to experience the joyful flavors from eating good food grown by our local small farmers.”