Our Staff

Liz Vallette


Liz joined the Plant It Forward team in January 2017, after admiring the organization for years. She is a native Houstonian with more than ten years’ experience in nonprofit organizational management. Her experiences working in several countries affected by the migration crisis led her to seek out sustainable economic solutions to support refugee resettlement and assimilation here in the U.S. Liz is an army veteran who studied industrial engineering at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and business at the University of Houston. She dabbles in edible container gardening, cheers for the Houston Dash, and is learning French. info@plant-it-forward.org

Randi Rogers

Farm Share Program Manager

Randi graduated from Eckerd College in 2014 with a degree in Natural Science and a minor in Journalism.  While in college she volunteered in local small scale organic farms and worked with the Edible Peace Patch teaching kindergarten students at low income schools about organic food and natural cycles found in nature.  She joined the Plant It Forward team after years of working and volunteering in small scale organic farms and managing a local non-profit organic fruit and vegetable farm, Finca Santa Marta, in Nicaragua all of 2014.  She has a passion for interacting with people and different cultures through sustainable farming and enjoys meeting the wide array of people included in the Plant It Forward Farms community. randi@plant-it-forward.org

Michael Le

Farm Operations Manager

Michael has been with Plant It Forward since September of 2014. He has had previous job experiences such as warehouse operations for a company in California, as well as the experience of taking on building and maintenance projects for Plant It Forward. His overall goal is for the farmers to achieve the best production of their produce with less work through mechanization. michael@plant-it-forward.org

Daniella Lewis

Farm Stand Program Manager 

Daniella has a professional architecture degree from the University of Texas at Austin and worked several years in that field before joining the Plant It Forward staff in January 2016. While a student at UT, Daniella had the great experience of leading the efforts to establish the first community garden and micro farm on the UT campus, both student-run projects. Daniella caught the farming-gardening bug while living in Austin and volunteering at local farms, owing special thanks to Green Gate Farms where she volunteered frequently over the course of 4 years and learned much about organic food production. At Plant It Forward Daniella manages the Farm Stand initiative, and also handles office administrative tasks, marketing, volunteers, research, and whatever else needs to be done! daniella@plant-it-forward.org

Fatumah Rakunda

Demonstration Farm Assistant

Fatumah is responsible for keeping the Plant It Forward demonstration farm in order for training sessions and crop growing experimentation. When she’s not working on the demonstration farm, she helps her husband, Alimasi, on his PIF Farm.

Joe Novak

Agriculture Consultant

Joe Novak is a life-long gardener. He has a Ph.D. in Vegetable Crops from Cornell University and has taught courses in garden science at LSU and Texas A&M. Novak holds expertise in organic farming practices and operations as well as in the field of Sociohorticulture. Novak is a consultant in special garden programs, advises some unique community garden programs in the Houston area and teaches a course in urban agriculture at Rice University. novakgardener@gmail.com


Elody Kayumba

Hub Coordinator

Elody is a Plant It Forward-trained urban farmer who has put her farming on hiatus while recovering from an auto accident. She is currently coordinating our Hub activities: wholesale and weekly institutional farm shares.

Cathy Stewart

Super Volunteer

Cathy has been paying attention to food and food production since she started travelling and living in places like Brazil, Europe and India.  Her role with the Farm is to build vibrant and productive relationships with the Farmers and the community.   Besides loving to eat, drink and cook, she geeks out over grocery stores, kitchens, farms and factories.  She also has a full-time job as an IT professional. cathy@plant-it-forward.org