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Meet The Team

“IDGeeks and Lean Green Consulting, LLC were born from the observations that both the International Development (ID) and industrial agriculture landscapes are fraught with ideological polarity. Knowledge-sharing and collaboration are the fundamental bases for innovation and change. We aim to bridge the gap between ideologies and facilitate critical cross-sectoral engagement. Our priority is to honor the voices of those impacted; to listen, to learn, to “debunk” commonly accepted practices.  Our vision is an Earth of equity, sustainability, and compassion. An Earth where development has become, ultimately, obsolete."

- Meg Geddis

MEG GEDDIS: Founder

Areas of expertise: 

  • Industrial Agriculture (hemp, maize) 

  • Communications

  • Finance and Business Development

  • Entrepreneurship, Leadership, and Women’s Empowerment

Areas of expertise:  Comment end 

  • Industrial Agriculture (hemp, maize, soybean) 

  • External Communications

  • Finance and Business Development

  • Entrepreneurship, Leadership, and Women’s Empowerment

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Meg is a Master of International Business, an International Development and Food Security specialist, and an experienced industrial hemp farmer and operational strategist with over 2,000 acres of land and 140 farmers under her personal direction in a single season. She is currently based in Rwanda working with One Acre Fund to support smallholder farmers in the hybrid maize seed production sector.

Upon graduating from the University of South Carolina with dual degrees in Business Administration and Marketing, Meg joined the United States Peace Corps and served as a Community Economic Development Advisor in Benin, West Africa from 2015-2017. Meg’s work with the Peace Corps focused primarily on the fields of food security and sustainable agriculture. Meg facilitated the establishment of numerous women’s microfinance associations and developed training programs on nutrition, maternal/child health, value-added income generation, and financial literacy. She also worked intensively with youth groups on numerous educational, entrepreneurial, and social initiatives, and with regional farmers to promote best practices and provide education to optimize sustainable agricultural practices.

After Peace Corps, Meg earned her Master’s degree in International Business (MIB) from her alma mater and the leading university for International Business studies in the country, the University of South Carolina. This experience has armed Meg with an exceptional perspective on the economics and politics of food supply chains and transnational business, along with skills in research, global trade data analysis, and large dataset visualization. As an Economics Team Researcher for the Stockholm Treaty Lab, Meg put these skills to practice through analysis of Nordic countries’ environmental policy in the construction of a model international treaty to fill the current policy gap and boost green investment. 

During her graduate studies, Meg operated as Project Team Lead and Translator for the USDA Food for Progress Millet Project with the National Cooperative Business Association (NCBA) CLUSA. Meg led and conducted extensive stateside research on the Senegalese millet value chain and national agricultural policy. Her fieldwork in Kaolack, Senegal expanded upon this research and focused predominantly on the evaluation of millet point-of-sale kiosks in order to assess the efficacy and provide recommendations for ownership models, governance structures, sustainable funding streams, and improved capacity building for actors along the value chain. 

Meg then moved to Denver, Colorado to work with Spirit of the Sun (a local nonprofit focused on the empowerment of Native/Indigenous communities and youth) and The Women’s Bakery (a nonprofit centered on East African women’s empowerment through access to gainful employment). These experiences further expanded upon Meg’s experience in rural economic and nonprofit development through skill attainment in comprehensive nonprofit operational strategy, Salesforce, fundraising, and marketing. 

Since 2019, Meg has owned and operated her own consultancy, Lean Green Consulting, LLC, and has hired and actively managed approximately 140 farmers at 7 organic, non-GMO hemp farms across the United States. In addition to scaling business operations from seed to end product, Meg worked hands-on at each farm to plant, cultivate, and harvest hemp plants, exceeding 2,000 acres nationwide. 

In 2020, Meg joined forces with Jake Meyers to build the LGC repertoire and create the International Development research platform, IDGeeks. Since that time, IDGeeks has expanded to include the talents of Molloy Sheehan and Queen Umutesi. Collectively, this dynamic and skilled team has worked with organizations across the globe, from large-scale private companies, to small nonprofits, to governments and political institutions, and nearly every entity in-between. 

Meg could not be more honored to witness the rapid evolution of the IDGeeks and LGC team. It is with confidence that she looks to the future and sees a world where International Development has become obsolete; each person has achieved food security, safety, and sovereignty; and the Earth has found harmony between human advancement and environmental health.

QUEEN UMUTESI: Rwanda Correspondent

Areas of expertise: 

  • Research

  • Public Speaking

  • Qualitative Data Collection & Analysis

  • Capacity Building For College level students

  • Workshop Design

Areas of expertise:  Comment end 

  • Industrial Agriculture (hemp, maize, soybean) 

  • External Communications

  • Finance and Business Development

  • Entrepreneurship, Leadership, and Women’s Empowerment

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Umutesi Queen is passionate about sustainable development. In all her work she aims at bridging the gaps between resources and the people that need them the most using data analysis and communication skills.

Queen majored in Linguistics and Languages (French and Arabic) and took courses in behavioral neuroscience and grant writing at Bryn Mawr College, receiving a bachelor’s degree in 2019. During her undergraduate, she was an international student coordinator, among her other work-study jobs, and this allowed her to interact with students and their parents mainly sharing information about the required documents to gain an F-1 visa (for international students) and/or how to fill in tax-return documents.

Upon graduating, she worked part-time with USAID-DAI Rwanda on the Ngurizanshore project as a Data Consultant in Rulindo district. After receiving training in data collection and policies, she led a team of 12 data collectors to carry out baseline surveys among 50+ farmers on their household economic standing prior to the implementation of the ginger farming project. 

 

She later on joined the African Leadership University as a Career Development Coordinator, where she designs content, workshops and newsletters for 200+ students to equip them with the skills needed to secure and sustain professional development opportunities. As part of her content design process, she researches about the most relevant market trends, sends out surveys to student focus groups, analyses past and real time student engagement data in order to design the most relevant and helpful professional development content.

During her free time, she volunteers with Ambitious Africa as a contributing writer mainly capturing and sharing stories of how ordinary Rwandans are taking steps towards financial stability and sustainability. She also enjoys learning new languages and reinforcing the ones she already speaks by practicing with native speakers. She can usually be found exchanging ideas with people both in-person and online because she simply cares.

JAKE MEYERS: Co-Founder

Areas of expertise: 

  • Climate adaptation and natural resource management

  • Wildlife conservation

  • Project design, implementation, and evaluation

  • Digital storytelling

Areas of expertise:  Comment end 

  • Industrial Agriculture (hemp, maize, soybean) 

  • External Communications

  • Finance and Business Development

  • Entrepreneurship, Leadership, and Women’s Empowerment

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Jake Meyers is an experienced development practitioner, applied social scientist, and digital storyteller with international research and field experience in over 15 countries. 

Jake graduated from Washington & Jefferson College with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and is a second-year Master’s of Development Practice student at the University of Arizona. During his undergraduate career, Jake conducted environmental research projects through a combination of semesters abroad, fellowships, and independently designed research projects in the Galapagos Islands (ecotourism and development), South Africa (great white shark conservation; semester abroad), China & Japan (sustainable practices in the auto industry), and across several Southeast Asian nations (researched how Buddhism, Catholicism, and Islam shape environmental perspectives; studied abroad in Cambodia & Vietnam).

After graduating, Jake served in the Peace Corps as an Environmental Action and Food Security Advisor in Benin, West Africa. Jake implemented a variety of projects including a malaria prevention program in five preschools that successfully prevented and treated cases of malaria in 300 children under the age of 5 in collaboration with the CDC and USAID under the umbrella of the President’s Malaria Initiative, the construction of a community food security center that introduced food transformation technologies, a household rabbit raising project funded by the Feed the Future Initiative that introduced this practice at the community level, and a commune-wide Let Girls Learn campaign that featured a Women's Day March with over 500 female high school students.

After his time in the Peace Corps, Jake conducted research on climate change adaptation strategies in a flooded forest in Cambodia as a Fulbright U.S. Student researcher and Visiting Researcher with the Wildlife Conservation Society and the Cambodian Ministry of Environment. 

As a Master’s of Development Practice student and Peace Corps Coverdell Fellow, Jake worked with the Department of Labor, Wage & Hour Division during his first year in the program. Jake worked with a team of investigators and administrators tasked with strengthening the agency's ability to strategically target employers who frequently violate the labor rights of both citizens and immigrants/refugees working in the greater Tucson area. 

In the Master’s of Development Practice program, Jake conducted his practicum in Kenya as a graduate research fellow with the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) in Nairobi where he assisted ILRI’s lead Climate Adaptation Scientist under their Programme for Climate-Smart Livestock Systems. Also in Kenya, Jake was employed as a Field Manager and Research Assistant for a large-scale Urban Food Security study where he managed a team of enumerators to collect information from 1,000 households and key-informants in the Mt. Kenya region.

Currently, Jake is employed with the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona. As a Peace Corps Coverdell Fellow, Jake is creating a statistical model to measure the non-profit community’s willingness to collaborate in Southern Arizona through a large-scale online survey using techniques derived from the field of ecosystem services valuation. 

Jake is also a skilled digital storytelling and won a National Storytelling Competition with Planet Forward. He now works as a Correspondent with this digital storytelling project based out of the Center for Innovative Media at the George Washington University School of Media and Public Affairs. 

Jake is an innovative and determined development practitioner and researcher with a strong background in (1) project design, implementation, and evaluation, (2) applied social science and climate adaptation research, and (3) digital storytelling and communication for project outreach and community impact. 

MOLLOY SHEEHAN: United States Correspondent

Areas of expertise: 

  • Health system capacity building

  • Nutrition, exercise interventions, and reproductive health

  • Non-communicable diseases

  • Survey design and analysis

Areas of expertise:  Comment end 

  • Industrial Agriculture (hemp, maize, soybean) 

  • External Communications

  • Finance and Business Development

  • Entrepreneurship, Leadership, and Women’s Empowerment

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Molloy Sheehan is a Fulbright-funded public health researcher and health systems strengthening professional, with a passion for chronic non-communicable disease (NCD) prevention. Her mission in life is to make it easier for people to be healthier. 

Molloy studied kinesiology, nutrition, and global culture at the University of Virginia, receiving a bachelor’s degree in 2015 and a Master’s in Exercise Physiology in 2016. For 2 years during graduate school, Molloy worked directly with over 60 patients at a hospital-based cardiac rehabilitation center using nutrition and exercise prescriptions to improve patient outcomes.

Upon graduating, Molloy worked as a Rural Community Health Advisor in Peace Corps Benin from 2016-2018. There, she created projects with community members designed to improve the health outcomes of vulnerable populations. 

Many of her projects focused on improving reproductive health access and education, resulting in a 25% reduction in unplanned pregnancies in her community during her service. She spearheaded the first camp in Peace Corps Benin exclusively taught in local language for descholarized youth. She also worked on gender equality projects as the National Professional Development Program Coordinator, where she directed grant-funded mentorship and internship programs, coordinating with several international NGOs, 60 host families, and 90 student leaders (75 young women). 

Noticing that many people in her community suffered from the same diseases she saw working at a cardiac rehabilitation center, Molloy innovated projects designed for NCD prevention. She implemented weekly hypertension monitoring groups, hypertension and diabetes education, and a sports group for mothers, breaking gender boundaries in a conservative Muslim community.

Following her work in the Peace Corps, Molloy used her qualitative and quantitative research skills as a Research Analyst at the Atlantic Media Company. She interviewed thought leaders and conducted surveys about artificial intelligence, technology modernization, and policy outcomes, publishing several articles and reports. 

She is currently the Principal Investigator of Fulbright-funded research in Togo. As chronic disease rates are largely unknown in West Africa, Molloy hired, trained, and led a team to gather data about NCD risk factors using household sampling. She collaborates with the Togolese Ministry of Health and WHO on strategies for leveraging her results to create change that matters.

Molloy’s interests include nutrition, public health policy, social determinants of health, and primordial and secondary cardiometabolic disease prevention. She hopes to devote her career to preventing chronic disease and reducing health disparities. 

©2020 IDGEEKS

LEAN GREEN CONSULTING, LLC