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Will Allen

Founder of Growing Power, MacArthur 'Genius' Award winner, and author of The Good Food Revolution

Agriculturalist Will Allen: 2008 MacArthur Fellow
  • About Will Allen

    Will Allen is an urban farmer who is transforming the cultivation, production, and delivery of healthy foods to underserved urban populations. After a brief career in professional basketball and a number of years in corporate marketing at Procter & Gamble, Will Allen returned to his roots as a farmer, using his retirement package to purchase a plot of inner-city land with greenhouses, where he has built the country’s pre-eminent urban farm, known as Growing Power, an organization that develops community food systems.

    In 2008, Will was named a John D. and Katherine T. MacArthur ‘Genius’ Grant Foundation Fellow. He is only the second farmer to have ever received this award. He is also a member of the Clinton Global Initiative, and in February 2010, Will was invited to the White House to join First Lady Michelle Obama in launching “Let’s Move!” – her signature leadership program to reverse the epidemic of childhood obesity in America. In May 2010, Time magazine named Will one the “World’s 100 Most Influential People.” In 2011, Will was named one of the “World’s 7 Most Influential Foodies” by Michael Pollan and Forbes Magazine. He was also named the 2012 NCAA Theodore Roosevelt Award recipient.

    Will Allen lives with his wife in Oak Creek, Wisconsin.

    Contact us for more information about booking Will Allen for your next event. 

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  • Praise for Will Allen


    The event was fabulous! Everyone fell in love with Will. We had a huge crowd, about 1100. When I walked Will into the gym, the minute he was through the door the students broke into applause and at the end they gave him a standing ovation.

    Westfield State University

    Praise for The Good Food Revolution: Growing Healthy Food, People, and Communities

    Generously and forthrightly sharing his life story and his passions as he makes the case for a new food system, Allen inspires us to move beyond self-interest when considering greener and healthier food. Assisted by the able writing of journalist Charles Wilson, Allen gives us the straight talk we yearn to hear from politicians…These gripping personal stories woven through the narrative provide a strong foundation for Allen’s incisive historical and social commentary…The Good Food Revolution is a real-world guidebook to positive change.

    Real Change News

    Will Allen is a hero and an inspiration to urban farmers everywhere. Now, with The Good Food Revolution, we learn how Allen rediscovered the power of agriculture, and in doing so transformed a city, its community, and eventually the world – with the help of millions of red wiggler worms. Told with grace and utter honesty, I found myself cheering for Allen and his organization, Growing Power.

    Novella Carpenter, Author of Farm City and The Essential Urban Farmer

    Far more than a book about food, The Good Food Revolution captivates your heart and mind with the sheer passion of compelling and righteous innovation. Wow!

    Joel Salatin, Author and Farmer at Polyface Farm, Inc.

    What Allen does with a small plot of land and a lot of determination is nothing short of inspiring. A moving story of one man’s success in producing healthy food for those who need it the most.

    Kirkus Reviews

    Not only compelling but a treatise on how our country supplies food and how the absence of a grocery store in your ‘hood is no excuse for not finding a good way to feed your family good food.


    From the plots of his Milwaukee urban farm to low-income communities across America, Will Allen has shown us a new type of heroism. Through The Good Food Revolution, Allen recounts his effort to reclaim his family’s heritage and, in doing so, confront lingering disparities in racial and economic justice. As the champion of a new and promising movement, Allen is skillfully leading Americans to face one of our greatest domestic issues – our health.

    Former President Bill Clinton

    Will Allen’s remarkable story, told with eloquence and compassion, conveys the universal value of social justice and real food,

    Alice Waters
  • Books by Will Allen

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  • 212 572-2013
  • Will Allen travels from Milwaukee, WI

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