Root Causes of Hunger in the U.S. and Globally – July 22, 2022

Academy, Updates, Zero Hunger

If you’ve been following along with the Zero Hunger Summer Seminars, you naturally have some interest in ending hunger—and hopefully some ideas on what will be needed to accomplish it. But hunger is a symptom of underlying problems, and any lasting solution must also take into account the root causes of food insecurity, both in the U.S. and globally.

Join us July 22 at 1 p.m. EDT as the 2022 Zero Hunger Summer Seminars continue with an examination of the root causes of hunger and food insecurity from four different perspectives. Our panelists will cover:

  • Native Hunger. We’ll look at the connections between longstanding federal policies such as forced removal, boarding schools, and removal of American Indian children from their homes and rates of hunger and diet-related disease, as well as ways Native Americans are using policy today to regain food sovereignty.
  • Low Wages. The federal minimum wage of $7.25/hour has not gone up in more than a decade, and there is no place in America where someone working full-time at the minimum wage can afford housing, health care, food, and other essentials. We’ll hear some proposed solutions for creating living wages for all workers across the country.
  • Agricultural Development in Global Food Security. Agricultural developments directly impact global food security; according to USAID, investment in agriculture can be at least twice as effective as investment in other sectors when it comes to reducing poverty.
  • Conflict as a Driver of Food Insecurity. Armed conflict amplifies troubles with agricultural systems already weakened by severe weather events, resulting in compounding acute crises with no easy way out.

College students and summer interns are especially encouraged to tune in. The session includes several short articles for pre-reading, which can be accessed when you enroll in the course via our Zero Hunger Academy platform.


Lexie Holden

Lexie serves as the Associate Director of Policy & Government Relations for the Intertribal Agriculture Council. Her work centers on uplifting the needs of Native American producers and Tribal communities, ensuring that their voices have a seat at the table in national policy. She also leads the Native Farm Bill Coalition, a group of more than 170 Tribal Nations, as well as Native, Intertribal, and allied organizations, all working to advance the policy priorities of Indian Country through the federal farm bill. She is a citizen of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, a graduate of the University of Chicago, and an alum of the 27th Class of Bill Emerson National Hunger Fellows.

Faye Duan

Faye completed the two-year Leland International Hunger Fellowship with Oxfam, where, from Washington, D.C., she worked to advocate for food security policies that guide U.S. foreign assistance and was part of a coalition that pushed bipartisan support to reauthorize the Global Food Security Act in 2018. From Dakar, Senegal, she produced research materials to support Oxfam’s policy advocacy in programs on climate adaptation and rural livelihoods—mainly, development of the West African milk sector and promotion of agroforestry in Mali.

Prior to becoming a Leland Fellow, Faye worked at the Meridian Institute where she supported mediators and facilitators in multi-stakeholder processes to solve public policy issues ranging from forest planning to coordinating continent-wide Aflatoxin control in African maize and groundnut value chains. Currently, she is pursuing a master’s degree in International Agriculture Development at University of California-Davis and conducting research on crop-livestock integrated organic agriculture.

Tony Eskridge

Tony was a member of the 27th Class of Emerson fellows. He is currently a Policy Program Associate at Kairos Center for Religions, Rights, and Social Justice, where he also did his policy placement during the Emerson fellowship and worked with the policy research arm of the Poor People’s Campaign. His field placement was with the Pittsburgh Food Policy Council where he worked with member organizations on the implementation of a plan to improve food systems for all, especially historically marginalized people. Tony believes that centering the needs and dreams of oppressed people in public policy implementation is the key to ending the systemic injustices in our society. Tony is a graduate of Rhodes College with a degree in Urban Studies and minor in Political Science.

Caroline Goodson

Caroline Goodson is a humanitarian policy advisor at Save the Children, where she focuses on hunger in conflict settings, Sub-Saharan Africa, and gender-based violence. She has educated congressional and executive branch staff on effective humanitarian practices and built congressional support for funding a response to the current global hunger crisis. Before Save the Children, Ms. Goodson was the legislative director and defense policy advisor to Rep. James Langevin, where she advanced bipartisan legislation in the annual defense policy bill and organized congressional staffers’ efforts to evacuate people from Afghanistan. She began her career in management consulting and holds a B.A. in Middle East studies and international relations from the University of Southern California.

Thank You

We gratefully acknowledge the support of the Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation for their generous support of the Zero Hunger Summer Seminars.
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