Jordyn Appel-Hughes, Executive Director of Feast Down East, has a boundless passion for her community and work with Feast Down East and as a local farmer. For 15 years she has centralized her efforts around cultivating and supporting a just, cohesive food system. Jordyn has a unique skill in community organizing, working with partners to design innovative and diversified programs. Embodying a strong affinity in creating accessible, sustainable and collaborative avenues to uplift the basic needs of local farmers, community members and ecological spaces. With many of these initiatives having resulted in substantial personal and professional growth through continued deep engagement and collaboration with community members, farmers, organizations and institutional partners.
Michigan grown and cultivated, Jordyn transplanted in Wilmington in 2015 to work with Feast Down East. Giving her the honor and privilege to grow with the organization from an AmeriCorps service member with FoodCorps to her current role as Executive Director. Jordyn has been able to elevate and enrich programs reflective of this in Wilmington and the Cape Fear region since 2015 and previously in Michigan from 2007-2015. This has been demonstrated through her design, launch and sustainable growth of the Feast Down East (FDE) Local Motive Mobile Farmers’ Market, which was the first farmers market in New Hanover County to implement the Fresh Bucks program, matching each dollar spent using food stamp benefits at the market sites. She has additionally increased FDE Food Hub farmer sales and local food provider partners through food relief programming and designing mindful lessons, resources and learning opportunities through farm and garden education. Jordyn is the lady half of Greensky Farms, which she co-operates and owns with her husband, Brendon. She is able to draw strong connections in closing the food system loop through thoughtful, uplifting and viable community engagement with nearly ten years of experience working on a diversity of small to large-size sustainable, biodynamic, organic and learning farms, community and school gardens.
Jordyn continually promotes equity and inclusion through authentic relationship building, community outreach, education and development in operations, programming and leveraging funds. Through this, she is constantly empowered and humbled by others and her work is a true representation of resiliency. She continues to uplift the community by being able to pivot and adapt, whether it be due to internal or external circumstances, such as with Hurricane Florence and throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. Because of this, she has received recognition for both the Wilmington Business Journals Healthcare Hero award for Community Outreach (2018) and 40 Under 40 from the Wilmington Star News (2020). In addition to the I Am Grand Valley award for Leadership in Environmental Stewardship from her alma mater, Grand Valley State University; where she graduated with a BA in Anthropology, Geography and Environmental Studies & Sustainability with a concentration in Food Systems and Agriculture.
A nature woman at heart, Jordyn can almost always be found outdoors. Catch her hiking with her dogs, tending to her crops and livestock, making her way to the water, hitting the local farmers markets or boogieing at Greenfield Lake Amphitheater.
Star News (August 2020): Meet Wilmington's 40 Under 40 Award Winners for 2020
Greater Wilmington Business Journal (November 2018): Health Care Heroes Award Winners Announced