Meet the Team: Chicago

Charity Grimes Bauman

Charity is an avid vegetable gardener, who is passionate about sharing the joy and impacts of growing food with others.

She has a BA in Environmental Science from Goshen College, and experience working with urban farms, garden education, and edible landscaping projects.  Most recently, she coordinated an edible garden outreach program in Pittsburgh, aiming to increase access to fresh and healthy foods through backyard vegetable gardening.  

Aside from gardening, Charity enjoys baking, traveling, playing in nature, and spending time with her husband and their mini schnauzer. 

Maggie Hughes
Regional Director

Maggie is a Chicagoland native. Having raised a large family, she is passionate about growing vegetables to create home cooked nutritious meals and healthy family time. Prior to Big Green she has spent the last 15 years in corporate sales management  roles. She is affiliated with the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and has a BA in Communications/Journalism from Northern Illinois University. In her spare time she enjoys golfing, swimming and biking.

Sam Koentopp

Sam Koentopp is a gardener, and teacher from Chicago.

Sam Koentopp is the Chicago Program Manager. He has been with Big Green since 2013 and has helped build most of the organization's Learning Gardens currently installed in Chicago schools. Sam is a father of 2 girls and outside of his work with Big Green he enjoys being with his family, cooking, eating, and playing music. Sam is proud to be a part of the Chicago urban agriculture community and believes deeply that we can accomplish the most when we work in cooperation and collaboration with our communities.

Whitney Richardson

Whitney carries a BA in International Studies from the University of Iowa, with a focus on Human Rights, and a post-professional certificate in Sustainable Urban Planning from Archeworks.

She has worked on global food security initiatives, co-led a recreational culinary center, developed an environmental arts initiative, supported a neighborhood seed library, grown for restaurants, co-designed green roofs, and manages the Logan Square Farmers Market year-round. Outside of Big Green, she moonlights as a birth doula, drummer, culture writer, and loves playing outside!

Corenna Roozeboom

Corenna’s passion for sustainable agriculture and community development has led to opportunities working for several non-profits, most recently as a school garden coordinator for a Chicago public charter school.

Corenna earned her master’s degree through Miami University at Ohio, focusing on how gardens can encourage environmental stewardship, community engagement, local and global understanding, and inquiry-based learning. She is most proud of starting a community garden in her neighborhood on the southwest side of Chicago.

Kalle Butler Waterhouse
Project Management

Kalle has worked in landscaping and design for 15 years and enjoys bringing her experience and passion for environmental education to schools in Chicago.

She completed her undergrad at Warren Wilson College and went on to earn her Master's of Landscape Architecture from the University of Georgia. Kalle is a LEED Accredited Professional and a Registered Landscape Architect. When she's not in the office, she loves family camping trips, gardening, and dabbling in photography.