Civil Eats Welcomes Sam Mogannam and Tracie Powell to Its Board of Directors | Civil Eats

Civil Eats Welcomes Sam Mogannam and Tracie Powell to Its Board of Directors

The additions are expanding the board as the organization moves into a new phase of growth in our 15th year. 

Sam Mogannam of Bi-Rite and Tracie Powell of the Pivot Fund.

Sam Mogannam (left) and Tracie Powell

We are pleased to announce that Civil Eats welcomes two new board members, Tracie Powell and Sam Mogannam.

A leader in philanthropic efforts to increase racial equity and diversity in media, Powell is the founder of The Pivot Fund, which seeks to support independent civic news and information. Mogannam is the second-generation owner of the San Francisco-based Bi-Rite Family of Businesses, a values-driven B Corporation, whose mission is to create community through food.

“As Civil Eats marks its 15th anniversary, we welcome the depth of knowledge and experience that both Powell and Mogannam bring to our board of directors,” Civil Eats Board Chairperson Will Rosenzweig said. “Their wealth of experience and knowledge, in media and food systems respectively, make them highly capable stewards and thought partners for Civil Eats. We look forward to incorporating their wisdom and guidance into our next chapter.”

Under Mogannam’s direction, Bi-Rite has grown to include two neighborhood markets (with a third slated to open this summer), a creamery, a catering division, and 18 Reasons, a nonprofit cooking school dedicated to empowering the community with the knowledge and creativity they need to buy, cook, and eat good food every day.

He’s also the co-author of Eat Good Food: A Grocer’s Guide to Shopping, Cooking and Creating Community Through Food. In addition to being inducted into the Specialty Food Association’s Hall of Fame, Mogannam was named one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business and selected to be on Forbes list of Small Giants.

“I am so honored to serve on the Civil Eats board,” Mogannam said. “Civil Eats has been my main source of information and inspiration about the responsible food movement. Its in-depth reporting is exceptional, and unique at a time when mainstream media’s budget cuts have adversely impacted the quality of information to which we have access.”

Powell served as board chair from 2017 to 2023 for LION Publishers, and was founding fund manager of the Racial Equity in Journalism (REJ) Fund at Borealis Philanthropy. She was a senior fellow with the Democracy Fund and a 2016 JSK (Knight) fellow at Stanford University. Powell is also the founder of, which focuses on the media and its impact on diverse communities.

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“I have known Naomi Starkman for nearly eight years, and I believe and admire her leadership,” Powell said. “Civil Eats is a groundbreaking news source that explains food policy in a way that makes it accessible to almost everyone. I am happy to be a part of that inclusive and impactful vision, and I look forward to serving alongside an incredible board to help lead this organization into its next successful phase.”

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Since 2009, the Civil Eats editorial team has published award-winning and groundbreaking news and commentary about the American food system, and worked to make complicated, underreported stories—on climate change, the environment, social justice, animal welfare, policy, health, nutrition, and the farm bill— more accessible to a mainstream audience. Read more >

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