Professional Staff

Kate Fullam

Executive Director

Prior to joining East End Food Institute, Kate built her career at Group for the East End, Southampton Hospital (now Stony Brook Southampton Hospital), and most recently at the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University. To complement over a decade of experience, Ms. Fullam earned a Master of Nonprofit Administration in 2011. She is a founding member of the Good Ground Community Garden in Hampton Bays, where she resides. Her wide range of experience with local and regional issues related to environment, economy, science, and human health are now united toward the goal of creating a more sustainable and equitable local food system.

Bob Hatton

Operations Manager

A resident of Hampton Bays, New York, Bob's last position was as Vermont Commodity Operations Manager at Salvation Farms in Winooski, VT. There he handled the day-to-day arrival of surplus produce coming in from local farms, packed it and sent it on through Vermont's charitable food system. He also ran a workforce development program that helped trainees learn job skills in food processing and packaging systems. Before that Bob spent over seven years with Portland Fruit Tree Project in Portland, Oregon. Portland Fruit Tree Project's mission is to increase equitable access to healthful food and strengthen communities by empowering neighbors to share the harvest. As their Program Manager, Bob helped organize groups of volunteers to harvest and care for fruit trees all around the city. As East End Food Institute's Operations Manager he manages the daily operations of South Fork Kitchens, the Farm to Community Program, as well as coordinating with the food producers who rent our kitchen space.

Heather C. Meehan

Program Coordinator

As Program Coordinator at East End Food Institute Heather Meehan oversees the Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farming Training (CRAFT) and Farm Apprentice Matching Program. She coordinates "Eat Real to Heal" culinary medicine classes for Stony Brook Southampton Hospital's Residency Program in Social Medicine and patient groups from the Coalition for Women's Cancers and Center for Parkinson's Disease, and oversees EEFI's community education & outreach initiatives. Prior to starting with the East End Food Institute in September 2018, she served as the Partnerships & Development Manager for Allergic to Salad, a NYC-based organization that provides seasonal cooking classes to students in over 150 schools throughout New York City from 2016-2018. During her time at Allergic to Salad, she pioneered their “Cookback to Kids” program which brings students from underfunded public schools into neighborhood restaurants and urban farms to learn from Chefs and Growers. Heather has been involved with the East End Farm to School Project since she started at EEFI and was part of the team who attended the inaugural Farm to Institute NYS (FINYS) summit in August 2019. She holds a B.A. in Creative Writing, summa cum laude, from Bard College at Simon's Rock. Heather is part of the Class 18 cohort of LEAD NY, a two year training program for emerging leaders in the Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resource sectors facilitated by Cornell University's Community and Regional Development Institute.

Jay Lippin

Chef in Residence

Chef Jay Lippin’s background includes tenures as Executive Chef at The Odeon and Cafe Luxembourg in New York City, Executive Chef at Crabtree’s Kittle House Restaurant in Chappaqua, NY, and most recently as Executive Chef at Baron's Cove in Sag Harbor, NY. He was also a winner of the TV show "Chopped" and WFAN’s “Tailgating Essentials & Barbecue Contest.” Jay is a member of the Slow Food East End board of directors and a tireless advocate for local food and producers. He is especially interested in cooking endangered heirloom produce to ensure future biodiversity for the planet and for diverse flavors in the kitchen. Working in partnership with Glynwood, and Hudson Valley Seed Library, and local farms, he participated in the Kitchen Cultivars grow out projects, a program combining seed saving, education, and tastings of heirloom varieties. Now serving as a guest chef at East End Food Institute, Jay is using his talents to benefit local farms and foodies by creating delicious products from surplus local farm produce.

Esther Ramos

Kitchen Production Associate

Esther Ramos started her professional cooking career at Topping Rose house and has worked at Wolffer Kitchen in Sag Harbor, among other local restaurants. A Food Production Associate at East End Food Institute since May 2018, Esther is the creative mind behind our weekly “Martes Mexicana” offerings at South Fork Kitchens cafe. Every Tuesday she crafts different specialties ranging from tacos with handmade tortillas and specialty salsas to Chicken Pozole and beyond. She also prepares the locally sourced lunches on our Cafe menu each day, and helps us fulfill wholesale orders for local farms and restaurants. Originally from Mexico, Esther now lives in Southampton with her son.

Patricia Tlapanco

Kitchen Production Assistant

Patricia Tlapanco has been honing her kitchen skills with us since August 2018. Her work has been essential to the growth of our Farm to Community program. Patricia collaborates with Chef Esther to prepare our weekly “Martes Mexicana” specials and uplifts everyone around her with her positive outlook. Originally from Mexico, Patricia now lives in Hampton Bays with her family.

Alayah Hewie

Cafe Associate