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Headshot of Debbie Field

Debbie Field M.Ed, Hon. LL.D 

Distinguished Visiting Practitioner

A social activist and globally recognized leader in the creation of more socially just and environmentally sustainable food systems, Debbie Field has collaborated with the Centre on numerous research, teaching and conference initiatives over the past two plus decades. Debbie’s passion for mentorship, collective action and policy change is informed by her Masters in Education from the University of Toronto and experiences as a community college instructor, union organizer and leadership in a variety of social movements. Her accomplishments have been acknowledged through numerous awards, including an OPHEA Award for Outstanding Contribution, OPSEU Bread and Roses Award, the Social Planning Council of Toronto’s Francis Lankin Award, Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Medal, and an Honorary Doctor of Laws from York University.

Debbie’s accomplishments and influence in Canada’s food movement are well known from her 25 years as Executive Director at FoodShare Toronto. Her leadership and nurturing of innovative solutions to food system challenges through multi-sector collaborative, community based approaches are rooted in a recognition of the importance of progressive policy change. In her Centre role, Debbie focuses on research collaborations with Centre associates on the role of civil society in the development of food security policies and programs, guest lectures and seminars and mentorship of students and community food practitioners with an interest in food system transformation.

Select Publications

Field, D. (2016). Putting Food First in Our Daily Lives. Ted X Stouffville.

Field, D. (2009).  (PDF file) The Crisis of Food Security: Building a Public Food System (opens in new window) . Esurio: Journal of Hunger and Poverty, 1.2:   

Field, D. (2006). Local NGOs, Global Governance and the Challenges of Sustainable Food. Civil Society and International Governance: Local, North American and Global Perspectives, John Kirton, J. and Hajnal, P. (eds).

Field, D. (2006). Building the Ecological Food System: From Hunger to Health to Ecosystems & Communities. Making Waves, 17.2: 28-32.

Field, D. (1999). Putting Food First; Women’s Role in Creating a Grassroots Movement outside the Marketplace. Women Working the NAFTA Food Chain, Women Food and Globalization, Barndt, D. (ed).

Updated January 2018