Jennifer Gaddis


Jennifer is an assistant professor in the department of Civil Society and Community Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She earned her PhD from the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies in 2014. While at Yale, Jennifer began an ongoing collaboration with the labor union UNITE HERE on their “Real Food, Real Jobs” campaign in K-12 schools. Her current book project, tentatively titled “Civic Cookery: Labor and food justice in American schools,” uses ethnographic, archival, and survey data on the National School Lunch Program to critique the deskilling and gendered devaluation of lunch ladies. She argues that a return to cooking and a new valuation of school cafeteria workers will reduce many of the negative ecological, economic, and public health externalities of the dominant heat-and-serve system of school food provisioning.

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