Team & Contributors

Sustainable Ridgewood

Team & Contributors

Joanna Hanrahan

Jo is a devotee of the outdoor lifestyle and loves spending time in nature, whether hiking through the woods or swimming in a lake, Jo is happiest in the open air.  A registered 200hour Yoga Alliance registered teacher with close to 500 hours certification, Jo taught yoga in Montclair prior to moving to Ridgewood. She is a committed community activist and volunteer who has been working with a number of local organizations since she moved to Ridgewood in 2015, including Family Promise. Her passion for nature and commitment to the local community led her to create Sustainable Ridgewood in 2020, which is conceived as a resource to help the people of the town on their journey towards sustainability.  
Prior to moving to the US in 2010, Jo lived in her birth city of London and pursued a degree in Marketing, working in publishing and financial sales. While she doesn’t miss the English weather, she does miss the English countryside. Jo is a keen runner and swimmer and has completed a number of triathlons in recent years. She and her husband Mike are proud parents to 4 beautiful kids, including her special needs son, Tom. 


Frank Mortimer

Frank Mortimer is an adjunct instructor at the Cornell University Master Beekeeping Program, Vice President of the New Jersey State Beekeepers Association, and a Certified Master Beekeeper.  Frank is the author of Bee People and the Bugs They Love, (Kensington Publishing, March 2021) and has written multiple articles featured in the widely circulated Bee Culture Magazine.  As president of the Northeast NJ Beekeepers Association  a position he has held since 2011  he has significantly grown his club’s membership, aligned the Northeast NJ Beekeepers with Ramapo College, and founded the “Honey Cup,” an annual honey tasting competition.  Frank has promoted beekeeping throughout the Northeast by speaking to everyone from school children to gardening clubs and civic organizations.  He has led beekeeping seminars across New Jersey and at The New York Botanical Garden. In addition, he successfully campaigned for his hometown of Ridgewood to become New Jersey’s first “Bee City USA.”  Frank is married, has three children, and beekeeping is something the whole family enjoys doing together.   
 For more information, please visit   

Ellie Gruber

Ellie Gruber and family have lived in Ridgewood since 1968. 
She is a member of both the Green Ridgewood and Green Team and a life-long proponent of environmental protection. 

Mike Hanrahan

Mike Hanrahan is passionate about using technology around the home to do his bit to help climate change.  Whether its geothermal heating/cooling, smart IoT devices, energy monitoring systems or electric cars, Mike believes innovation is our path to a zero carbon future.  As an optimist he truly believes that the global project to zero carbon is one that will bring untold benefits to humanity, but also a journey that we can start on today in our own homes.
Mike and his wife Jo are the parents of 4 young kids and Mike loves spending time with his family in nature (especially if he can cajole them to play golf!).   He works at Walmart’s innovation incubator, Store No 8, where he runs their computer vision artificial intelligent program.  

Stacey Antine, MS, RDN

Stacey Antine, MS, RDN is the founder of HealthBarn USA, the leader in proven hands-on healthy-lifestyle education for children and their families located in Ridgewood, NJ, and author of Appetite for Life, HarperOne.  She teaches children and grown-ups about nutrition by growing their own food, cooking with their bounty and learning why these natural foods are best for their bodies.  She also serves as the Director, HealthBarnÒ Foundation where she began Healing Meals, a nutritious food gifting program for families with ill children at Tomorrows Children’s FoundationHackensack Medical CenterSt. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital, Paterson and Emmanuel Cancer Foundation; and seniors in need .  She is a registered dietitian with a Master’s of Science in Food, Nutrition and Dietetics from New York University.  Stacey has over 25 years of experience as a nutrition counselor, speaker, writer and media spokesperson. 
She has appeared on The Rachael Ray Show, CNN, CBS-TV, PBS in featured in video and print footage by the Associated Press.   BusinessWeek Online selected Stacey as Entrepreneurs to Watch for HealthBarn USA in “She Did it Her Way.” She was featured as “Our Hero” by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics for her dedication to children’s health where she is also a member and honored as Today’s Honoree, the #1 Blog for Recognizing the Works of Others.  Stacey has appeared in over 500 television networks across the country, many national and local magazines and has worked with leading chefs including Wolfgang Puck to raise awareness about healthy eating. She served as the chair of the Academy of Food and Nutrition’s Business and Marketing Task Force and she was appointed to the council for its national Kids Eat Right campaign.  Stacey is a member of The Academy Foundation’s RD Farmer Committee of Experts. In 2018, she accepted the Gold Level President’s Volunteer Service Award on behalf of HealthBarn Foundation for over 3,500 volunteer hours and 10,000 free and nutrition meals cooked and delivered in 2018.  

Erin Mickelwaite, MSW

Erin is a lover of plants and wildlife, and is happiest out working in the sun.  Since she and her family moved to Ridgewood in 2014, she has been busy turning her front yard into a food-producing garden.  Erin holds a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resource Management with a minor in Agroecology.   She worked as a student intern on the Cook College Student Organic farm (now known as the Student Sustainable Farm), a CSA farm where she fell in love with growing food. During her tenure as Special Projects Coordinator for the Burlington County Farmland Preservation Program, she helped to develop and establish the Burlington County Agricultural Center, the first county-run agricultural center in New Jersey.  Erin worked as a licensed massage therapist in private practice in Princeton for 8 years, and also holds a Master of Social Work degree with a focus on Gerontology and Aging. Erin is passionate about reducing waste and is on a mission to make life at home in the suburbs more about sustainability and less about lawns.  Erin maintains a regular meditation practice and has hosted and participated in sacred women’s circles for over twelve years.  She lives in one of the few one-story “tiny” houses in Ridgewood with her two amazing daughters and husband, who is a composer and associate professor of music at Ramapo College.  She is also an administrator of the Buy Nothing Ridgewood groups on Facebook, which have been wildly successful in helping to create a culture of reusing and repurposing in our community. 

Dana Spett, MSW/DSW Candidate

Executive Director and founder of Pony Power Therapies began in 2000 with four riders and one horse. An accomplished equestrian from a young age, she became a certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor by the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International when one of her three daughters was diagnosed with minor sensory integration issues. In 2003, Pony Power purchased a four-acre horse farm in Mahwah, NJ, which has grown to 13 acres to become Bergen County’s only full time, fully inclusive, barrier free equine-assisted activity center. 

Rebecca Sokolov

Rebecca brings a broad knowledge of sustainability, environmental science, and urban studies to Sustainable Ridgewood. She has a B.A. in Human Geography (Environmental Studies) from the University of British Columbia, Canada, and possesses two years of professional experience in community sustainability and sustainable business development.
She has a strong interest in environmental issues, particularly as they relate to the social and humanitarian impact of climate change.
Rebecca has experience working with a local government (UK) to formulate a Climate Action Plan (CAP); she has also led the data-collection for a major sustainable waste insights project in a London borough.
Growing up in Toronto, Canada, Rebecca’s distinctly urban upbringing was matched with an unsatiable desire to be out and among the trees.

Mike Faherty

Mike Faherty is a twenty-year resident of Ridgewood, New Jersey. He is the owner of Step Outside LLC, a consultancy for sustainable food businesses. Mike is a member of Ridgewood’s Green Team and is the leader of Project 1000 Acres for Green Ridgewood.
The goal of Project 1000 Acres is to promote sustainable landscape practices in the Village that reduce greenhouse-gas emissions, lessen pollution, and improve local ecology. Mike is the author of A Step Outside: Understanding the Nature and History of the Land Around Us and publishes a periodic newsletter. Nature and Inspiration on Substack.

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