local foods market and distribution departments
Acclaimed chef and butcher Rob Levitt trained in some of Chicago’s best kitchens before opening the restaurant Mado in Chicago. Teaching himself the craft of butchery, Rob and his wife Allie started the Butcher & Larder in 2013 at it’s original location on Milwaukee. Rob is on a mission to help you trust your butcher once again.
Abra is the Executive Chef at Local Foods. Abra grew up in the agrarian culture of western Michigan and spent time training at Ballymaloe Cookery School, Vie, Floriole. She is also co-founder of Bare Knuckle Farm, a small-scale, bio-diverse vegetable farm in Michigan’s Leelanau Peninsula. She strives to make simple, delicious food that celebrates the Midwest. She believes that the meals we eat should change with the seasons and that their ingredients should come from nearby.
Roy Pugh is the Director of Operations and manages both operations and procurement for Local Foods. Roy learned to appreciate the benefits of local food as a pre teen when he helped plant and maintain the family vegetable garden. After a career in IT and project management, his passion for food led to owning a catering business, working in kitchens on the West Coast and in the Midwest, and ultimately several years learning wholesale food distribution. Roy is passionate about sharing stories of the Midwest’s best producers.
Michelle Erwin is the Customer Experience Manager for Local Foods store. After attending the University Of Wisconsin at Madison, Michelle got the food bug—a passion that inspired her return to school to receive her Health Coaching Certificate at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. Besides being passionate about making your experience at the store the best that it can be, Michelle really loves vegetables.
Ethan Fischer is the Market Manager for Local Foods store. Ethan loves small food stores and hails from Green Grocer in Chicago where he managed the store. When not at the store, Ethan and his wife Robyn run Central Pickling, a pickle company making classic dill pickles in handpacked, small batches using local, organic ingredients.
Sandra Mendez is the Events Manager at Local Foods. A social whirlwind of excitement when planning the perfect event, she brings fresh new ideas to each party and customizes every event to be unique. Understanding that no two events are alike, her knowledge of industry trends and ten years of experience helps her focus on the attention to detail our clients deserve. When not planning perfect events, Sandra can be found performing with her local community theatre group.
Andrew Lutsey is founder and CEO of Local Foods. Andrew began a career in finance, but found greater calling on his family’s 1000-acre organic cattle, hog and poultry farm in Door County, WI. Working on the family farm shaped his vision for Local Foods and instilled a passion for supporting Chicago’s farm-to-fork infrastructure. Andrew started Local Foods to simplify the way Midwestern farmers’ products are brought to market, and to share the treasures available on family farms around the Midwest.
Dave Rand is a co-founder for Local Foods. He manages sales of Local Foods’ distribution arm. He cultivates relationships with the Midwest's best farmers and Chicago's best restaurants, caterers, cafeterias and grocers. Dave knows good food. His background includes work for an Illinois grass-fed cattle ranch, an organic heirloom grain farm, a salmon cannery in Bristol Bay, Alaska, and a role as the Farm Forager for Chicago's Green City Market.
Ryan Kimura is a co-founder of Local Foods. He manages the marketing and information for Local Foods. An advocate for sustainable food, he has worked with numerous good food organizations including the Green Chicago Restaurant Coalition and Slow Food Chicago. Previously, he worked in global strategy and technology advisory roles for Deloitte, the largest professional services firm in the world.