Morgan McGhee, FoodCorps’ Director of School Nutrition Leadership, was recently featured on the Diversify Dietetics blog. Check out a snippet from her interview:
WHAT IS YOUR ETHNICITY/RACE, and DID YOUR FAMILY HAVE ANY CUSTOMS RELATED TO FOOD?
I am Black American. I grew up in Alabama and while we ate typical “southern” food there was also a very strong influence in a “plant-based” diet. My parents were very committed to ensuring that my sisters and I knew how to cook. We had cooking days and it could not be something we “usually” ate. From a very young age, this helped me to be creative in the kitchen and to try new things that impacted my decision to become an RD.
WHAT DO YOU DO NOW AS A DIETETICS PROFESSIONAL AND WHAT DOES A TYPICAL DAY OR WEEK LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?
I recently transitioned into a position as FoodCorps’ School Nutrition Leadership Director for the reWorking Lunch initiative. With collaboration from numerous stakeholders, the program will create a pipeline for the next generation of school food leaders. Our leadership program will launch in just over a year so during a typical week, I have phone calls and meetings with training partners or school district directors about core program elements and with internal stakeholders on best practices from our direct service program. I love my job because I am able to use my past experience as a menu planner, nutrition educator and operator while using my expertise in program planning, implementation and evaluation as a public health dietitian.
WHY DO YOU THINK DIVERSIFYING THE FIELD OF NUTRITION IS IMPORTANT?
As I once said to a committee chair, “How can we represent student health if we do not have a representative committee?” If we truly want to impact health outcomes in this country, we have to be serious about who is a part of the conversation. It is more than having a “diverse” staff but truly challenging ourselves on understanding the systemic barriers to good health in the United States.