The Department of Food and Nutrition Service’s own Kim Szeto was honored yesterday with the Massachusetts Farm to School Project’s Blue Ribbon Award for excellence and leadership. Kim is the Farm to School Coordinator for Boston Public Schools and has grown the program from a pilot project in only 6 cafeterias to a mainstay on the lunch line of all 44 BPS cafeterias. Last year, Boston Public Schools served over 35000 pounds of local produce to students across the city. Kim, via Farm to School and the BPS Local Lunch Thursday program, has brought a myriad of fresh Massachusetts farm produce to our schools including apples, butternut squash, rutabaga, fresh strawberries, and much more.
Kelly Erwin, the Director of the Massachusetts Farm to School Project, made the award to Kim at the City Year Headquarters in downtown Boston. Ms. Erwin praised Kim’s dedication and perseverance as well as her ability to connect with students. Several speakers echoed this sentiment, including Barbara Ferrer, the Executive Director of the Boston Public Health Commission, who remarked “Farm to School needs a champion. Kim is that champion.”
Representatives from Farm to School partners across the city and state were in attendance at the ceremony including: The MA Department of Agriculture, the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, The Boston Collaborative for Food and Fitness, The Boston Public Health Commission, The Mayor’s Office, Project Bread, and The Food Project, and The Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation.
Kim Szeto accepted the Blue Ribbon Award on behalf of the entire department of Food and Nutrition Services, noting that Farm to School would not be possible without the immense support of everyone in our central office and all of our cafeterias.
From all of us at the Department of Food and Nutrition Services, Congratulations Kim! Thank-you for everything you have done over the past several years to make Farm to School a success in Boston Public Schools. We are looking forward to another terrific year ahead.