Introducing Backyard Growers' new Program Director!

Dear Friends:

As we transition from a rainy spring to a promising growing season, we bid a warm farewell and thank you to our Interim Program Director, J. Harrison. J. stepped in at our busiest time of year to launch our spring initiatives, streamline our program deliverables, and shape the new full-time Program Director position.

It was such a gift to have the opportunity to work side-by-side with J., who is a dear friend and a long-time supporter of Backyard Growers. Going forward J. will continue to work with us as a consultant, working on a range of projects to help us continue to build healthy, connected and environmentally sustainable communities.

After a rigorous candidate search, we are thrilled to announce Corinne Lippie as our new Program Director. Corinne has been leading and managing nonprofit organizations in the Greater Boston area for the past 15 years. Her professional experience bridges work in academia, philanthropy, non-profit, and business.

Corinne began her career as a Program Officer at Harvard University’s Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations at the Kennedy School of Government. In 2009, she became a Project Director at the North Shore United Way, where, among other things, she spearheaded a new initiative to combat childhood obesity. It was in that role that she was first introduced to Backyard Growers.

In 2015, Corinne and her husband and two children moved to Rome, Italy, where she developed a deep appreciation for cross-cultural learning and insight into the relationship between children and their access to healthy food in a European context. She and her family returned to their home in Beverly in the summer of 2018. Eager to re-engage with her local community, Corinne joined the Backyard Growers Board of Directors in winter 2019. We quickly realized that her expertise was a perfect fit for the new Program Director role and asked her to join our job candidate pool.

The need to create the new Program Director position and to restructure our staffing model emerged out of our 2018 strategic planning process. We’re excited about our new path as outlined in our 3-year strategic plan, which we launched in winter 2019. In her role, Corinne will lead in implementing our strategic plan objectives, developing our new consulting practice, and overseeing our Community, Backyard and School programs.

She’s excited to get to work with the Backyard Growers team and to connect with our many community partners. If you would like to reach out to Corinne, you can reach her at She’s looking forward to working with all of you!


Lara Lepionka

Executive Director