Ann Cooper, food service director for Boulder Valley School District (BVSD) in Boulder, Colo., is retiring at the end of December.
Known as the “Renegade Lunch Lady,” Cooper helped set up the district’s farm-to-school program, where she formed relationships with local farmers and provided ways for students to connect with how their food is grown. She was also responsible for the creation of the district’s Culinary Center, a 13,000-square-foot centralized kitchen that helps provide 14,000 scratch-cooked meals a day for students.
Outside of BVSD, Cooper set up the Chef Ann Foundation, a nonprofit organization that helps schools across the country prepare scratch-made, locally sourced food.
In a letter to the BVSD community, Superintendent Rob Anderson announced that current food services manager Stephen Menyhart will become director of the nutrition program in 2021.