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Meet the Nutrition Team

Amy Saxe-Custack

Amy Saxe-Custack, PhD, MPH, RDN, Assistant Professor of Food Science and Human Nutrition at MSU, currently serves as the Nutrition Director for the Pediatric Public Health Initiative. A long-time resident of Genesee County, Dr. Saxe-Custack is dedicated to the evaluation and expansion of nutrition programs that target children and families living in Flint, with a particular focus on improving access to fresh foods. Much of this work has been initiated in partnership with the Flint Farmers’ Market (FFM) and Hurley Children’s Center (HCC) to examine the impact of an innovative fruit and vegetable prescription program for pediatric patients. Through federal and foundation grants, Dr. Saxe-Custack is working with partners to expand both the fruit and vegetable prescription program and Flint Kids Cook.

Gayle Shipp

Gayle Shipp, PhD, Assistant Professor in the Charles Stewart Mott Department of Public Health, is a registered dietician nutritionist. She is engaged in several research projects with the overarching goal of improving maternal and child health equity, specifically breastfeeding related disparities. Her research interests also spans diet and nutrition-related health disparities impacting vulnerable populations, food access and food choice in underserved areas, and community nutrition.

Sarah Egan

Sarah Egan, MPH, RD, currently serves as the Project Coordinator for the Pediatric Public Health Initiative cooking programs. She has experience teaching nutrition education to individuals of all ages in various settings including schools, food pantries, and community spaces. She is passionate about increasing health outcomes for Flint youth and families through nutrition and culinary education and improving access to healthy foods. Her work specifically focuses on the management and expansion of Flint Kids Cook.

Katie Hacker

Katie Hacker, RD, currently serves as a Research Assistant for the Pediatric Public Health Initiative. She is a registered dietitian with several years of experience providing nutrition education to individuals of all ages in both clinical outpatient and community settings. Ms. Hacker currently works on dietary data collection for the Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Program Study for both the pediatric and prenatal programs. She aspires to continue to work alongside the Flint community to promote increased access to nutritious foods and nutrition education.

Bridget Farmer

Bridget Farmer currently serves as a Research Assistant for the Pediatric Public Health Initiative. Ms. Farmer works on dietary data collection to help learn the impact of a fruit and vegetable prescription program on diet and weight, food security, and access to fresh foods. As a Flint resident, she is passionate about improving nutrition programs available to children and families in the Flint community.

Kimberly Pulka

Kimberly Pulka is a certified Community Health Worker and serves as a Research Assistant for the Pediatric Public Health Initiative. Ms. Pulka’s passions lie in exploring the interface of public health and social justice, and she aims to use her experience in research, immigrant rights activism, health outreach and education to promote health equity in the Flint community and beyond. Ms. Pulka currently works on dietary data collection for the pediatric and prenatal Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Programs.

Anna Sampson

Anna Sampson is a D.O. candidate at Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine. She currently serves as a Student Research Assistant for the Pediatric Public Health Initiative. Ms. Sampson’s work focuses on data collection to help learn the impact of a fruit and vegetable prescription program. Her main passions are preventative medicine and addressing health disparities. She aims to learn about the Flint community and learn how she can integrate community-based research and healthcare to improve health outcomes.

The PPHI Nutrition Team's Projects Include:

  • Increasing community-wide breastfeeding initiatives
  • Flint Kids Cook
  • WIC co-location with Hurley Children's Center
  • Nutrition education (classes/RD)
  • Fruit and vegetable prescription program  
  • Double Up Food Bucks expansion
  • Mobile food access
  • Healthy Food for Healthy Families voucher program