Arlene Stein

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Arlene SteinArlene Stein is food program director of Evergreen Brick Works, Canada’s first environmental community centre. She helped open and develop community programs in food and urban agriculture, outdoor health and recreation and children’s education. She has over 20 years of experience in event management, program design and marketing communications, with a focus on food, urban agriculture, community development and environmental sustainability. Formerly the director of Events and Catering for Hart House, she managed a multifaceted events team focused on corporate and social events and developed programs on food security issues, sustainability and social justice.


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 Hart House 2000–2010
  • Director of Catering and Events
  • Alumni Committee and Social Justice Advisor
  • Developed the Campus Urban Agriculture Program
  • Managed Food Programming


“I am proud to have had the opportunity to work with so many amazing students—some who subsequently became my good friends. Most of the foundation work we did around food justice and food security, I learned by working alongside the most amazing individuals. Together, we started the food sustainability fair, initiated a community kitchen program that further developed into a service learning program with Professor Andrea Most, and made a commitment to stop using unsustainable food products and bottled water at Hart House.


“I was also very active as a member of a campus initiative that became ‘Local Food Plus’. I worked on the advisory committee for the U of T food bank and worked as part of a broader campus group to help with local procurement through food service contracts.”


New Ideas

I think like any institution, change is very difficult and through my tenure at Hart House, we experienced many large, radical changes. In the end, I think the decisions that were made were for the good of the students who use Hart House. However, it was difficult to get some of these new ideas through in order to embrace a better structure and facility.


“I continue to work in the field of food and sustainability. I am working with Evergreen on their national food strategy as well as for myself on my own symposium for hospitality and another organization that brings together chefs to study international foodways.


“The focus of my work will always be about looking for better, alternative food systems and to continue to help educate people about the issues that affect our current industrialized food system.”

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