Meet We Are FoodPioneers

Debs and Amy are the Directors of We Are FoodPioneers.

We believe everyone can be a FoodPioneer and play a part in making Worthing town a vibrant, exciting and supportive place to live and visit. We’re proud and grateful to work with our brilliant team of volunteers, businesses and delivery partners. Without you, none of this is possible. We Are FoodPioneers!

We have up-to-date DBS checks, food safety certificates and a wide range of education, life and work experiences.

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Debs Butler

Debs is a people person and loves bringing and weaving people together for a common purpose. She brings extensive experience in relationship management, developing partnerships and loves kick-starting new projects. Debs is a trained beekeeper, loves sailing and practices meditation all of which help keep her level headed.

Stacey Manser-Knight

Our resident Phycologist and seaweedmeister. An artist, maker, chef, alchemist and activist, Stacey brings a wealth of ideas and commercial nous to the table. When not creating, Stacey loves nothing better than mooching about on the seashore and foraging the countryside.

Amy Thorley

Amy is an energetic and outgoing person who believes in the power of community. A natural communicator with experience in the corporate, public and third sector. She brings project management, volunteer coordination and event organisation skills to the team. A food lover, happiest when sharing food with friends, Amy also loves enjoying the beautiful Sussex countryside with her dog and family.

Jules Engelsman

Jules brings a dollop of biz and catering knowhow to FoodPioneers. In a past life, he
founded Bagelman (Brighton) and more recently, healthy treats brand Joyfuel. He
relishes challenges, projects, spinning plates, inventing stuff. But also sitting on a
cushion and zoning out. Or is it in? Whatever.

Fran Southgate

Fran is passionate about people, the planet and our relationship with nature. If you want wilding, ecological networks or environmental alchemy then she’s your lass. Fran believes in individual and community empowerment through connection with the land. She also likes food and bees a lot, which helps. She occasionally makes the FoodPioneers come together and sleep outside in bivvy bags around a camp fire eating nettle soup … which everyone loves … honest!

susanne barthelmes

Susanne Barthelmes

Susanne loves nature, food, cooking and enabling people to be the best they can be. After decades in Arts Management, she is now a counsellor by day and a FoodPioneer by night. As wife to one of the founding directors, she knows the organisation from day 1. What she brings to the team is her nerdy passion for systems, small-print, finance, and spreadsheets – lovingly referred to as the microscaries.

edward kilroy

Edward David Kilroy

Ed has lived in Sussex on and off all his life and finds being nestled between the sea and the downs therapeutic and bountiful when it comes to food, foraged or otherwise! His love of food and drink started from an early age with his father owning a nationwide catering company and his uncle being in the wine and spirits industry. That passion soon rubbed off and Ed’s worked in hospitality, in one form or another, his whole life.
His biggest inspiration has been Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall and seeing how food can bring a community together. When Ed’s not feeding his family and friends or enjoying a dram of whisky, he can be found wandering the woods, listening to music, relaxing with a book in his hand or playing Mario Kart with his kids!

Meet our growing team of FoodPioneers