2017 Food+City Challenge Prize Judges

mason arnold
veggie noodle co

Mason Arnold has been a Sustainability pioneer and serial entrepreneur for more than 15 years. In that time, he’s started and successfully exited several companies and, between him and his companies, has been recognized in 25 different awards for business innovation, environmental stewardship, and entrepreneurship at local and national levels. Mason has also created and sat on the board of several non-profits and drafted legislation to help Sustainability causes. 


Randy Evans
H-E-B Director & Executive Chef for Restaurants

Chef Randy Evans is an award-winning chef and Texas native with more than 20 years experience working in fine kitchens in Houston, and with boatmen, artisans, farmers and ranchers across the Lone Star State. Formerly of Haven and Brennan’s of Houston, Chef Evans has worked with H-E-B since 2014 on its restaurant projects throughout Texas. At H-E-B, Chef Evans is responsible for the menu and recipe development of its five restaurants in Austin, Houston and San Antonio. He is also author of award winning cookbook The Kitchen Table (Bright Sky Press, November 2006).

Chris Burke, Dell

Chris Burke is a supply chain enablement Program Manager for Dell.  Leading global, cross-functional teams to aid business acquisition and transformation activities.   He is assigned as leader of the Global Operations Secure Supply Chain programs.  Chris is a lecturer at the McCombs School of Business where he teaches upper level and MBA courses in Operations Management and Project Management.  Chris served 27 years in the U. S. Air Force assigned to various logistics career fields.

Lamar JOhnson, Supply Chain Management Center of Excellence, McCombs school of business at ut-austin

Lamar Johnson is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, and spent 33+ years at Procter & Gamble in various Sales and Supply Chain roles. Lamar currently works in the space between faculty, students, and industry to facilitate research, develop experiential learning programs for students, and enable companies to find outstanding talent at The McCombs School of Business at UT Austin.

Edwin Marty, Office of Sustainability, City of Austin

Edwin Marty is the Food Policy Manager for the City of Austin’s Office of
Sustainability. Edwin earned a BA in Anthropology from the University of Oregon and completed an “Apprenticeship in Agroecology” from the University of California, Santa Cruz. He was the founder and director of the non-profit Jones Valley Teaching Farm located in Birmingham, Alabama and co-authored a book about urban farming called Breaking Through Concrete.

Curt Nelson, Austin foodshed investors

Curt Nelson is an investor focused on local sustainable farms and food companies, real estate, and technology. Before co-founding Austin Foodshed Investors, he founded multiple tech companies and exited a couple.  He currently serves as a mentor, advisor, and supporter for several sustainable food initiatives. Curt has been married for 34 years and has one son.


Carlos Barroso, Campbell Soup company

Carlos J. Barroso joined Campbell as Senior Vice President-Global Research & Development and Quality in July, 2013. He reports to Denise Morrison, President and Chief Executive Officer, is a member of the Campbell Leadership Team and heads the Global R&D/Quality Leadership Team. Carlos is responsible for leading Campbell’s more than 700 R&D/Quality employees worldwide, focusing on accelerating innovation and new product development to strengthen the company’s core businesses and expand into higher growth spaces, including new consumer segments, categories and geographies.

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don dastrup, true food kitchen

Don Dastrup began his 20 year restaurant career at Mimi’s Café. After graduating from culinary school in California, he worked in the resort and country club industry at the Montage in Laguna Beach and as Executive Chef at Aliso Creek Inn Country Club.  Since returning to Austin, he’s opened the north location of Roaring Fork and worked to feed 5,000 football fans as Executive Chef at Club Corp at the University of Texas Club. He’s recently joined the team at True Food Kitchen as Executive Sous Chef.


ajay mittal, doordash

Ajay is the Texas Regional Manager for DoorDash, a silicon valley based logistics technology company that focuses on restaurants and adjacent verticals. Previously, Ajay was a strategy and management consultant with Deloitte Consulting and advised clients on growth and transformation challenges. Ajay graduated from the MBA program at The McCombs School of Business and served as a fund manager with the MBA Investment Fund LLC during his years at McCombs.

Scott Jensen, Rhythm Superfoods

Scott is the Co-Founder & current CEO of Rhythm Superfoods. He is also the former CEO & President of Stubb’s Bar-B-Q Sauce Co., which he co-founded 20+ years ago with C.B. Stubblefield, and two close friends. He also co-founded Stubb’s Austin Restaurant Company, the famous Bar-B-Q and Live Music Venue in Austin, Texas.

Andy sasser, Whole Foods market

Andy Sasser is an 18 year veteran of the retail and hospitality industry with time split almost evenly between independent restaurants and Whole Foods Market. Currently the Global Culinary Operations Coordinator, Andy leads initiatives in program development, Global procurement, and promotional planning. Andy has been married for 14 years and has a 11 year old daughter and 9 year old son.

Sara Brand, True Wealth ventures and (512) brewing company

Sara Brand is the founding general partner of True Wealth Ventures, a venture capital fund to scale women-led businesses in the high growth sustainable consumer and consumer health markets where women are well-represented decision makers. Sara serves on UT Austin’s Cockrell School of Engineering's External Advisory Board and acts as Senior Advisor for Health IoT to UT’s new Dell Medical School where she fosters health technology innovations across industry, academia and community. Sara is also the owner and co-founder of (512) brewing company in Austin, Texas. Starting 8 years ago with her husband and using organic grains and reusable packaging, they believe (512) brewery is now the largest draught only, self-distributing brewery in the country. Sara holds a BS in mechanical engineering from UT Austin and a Ph.D. and M.S. in ME in Green Design and Manufacturing with a minor in Public Health and Energy & Resources along with a Management of Technology Certification from UC Berkeley as an NSF Fellow. 

Bill tolany, Amazon Prime Now

Bill Tolany has diverse leadership experience at Amazon, Whole Foods Market, and startups. He has built high performing teams at the intersection of food and technology, and Bill is a frequent guest speaker on innovation, leadership, and corporate culture.

Shelly Brenckman, Startup Aggieland

Shelly Brenckman is a member of the founding leadership at Startup Aggieland, Texas A&M University's campus technology accelerator and incubator. Shelly has helped to launch 160 startups since 2012 with 58 clients raising a combined $28.8M. She's a sought-after entrepreneurship speaker who also manages the Dormcubator, operated by Startup Aggieland and powered by the Center for New Ventures and Entrepreneurship at Mays Business School.

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tom stevenson, medical innovation labs and Encendre

Tom Stevenson is the Chief Strategy Officer at Medical Innovation Labs, a medical device and technology company. He is also CEO of Encendre, an agribusiness consulting firm specializing in helping foreign producers, mostly from North Africa and South America, form direct relationships with US brands and retailers. Tom holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and has over 25 years of marketing, strategy and start-up experience; including positions such as Worldwide Head of Digital Marketing for Bacardi and Director of Strategy at WashingtonPost/Newsweek Interactive.