What I Like to talk About

The Power of One – How an aging geek changed a food network
An inspirational look at how people with ideas and passion can make changes that ripple across the world. Key takeaway: You can do the impossible if you first believe it isn’t.
Audience: Universities, corporate events, general public

Innovative Solutions, Innovative Metrics
How innovative changes call for a new way of measuring success – or failure.
Audience:  corporate events, think tanks, universities

People of Faith Responding To Food Waste
A look at Food Waste Weekend – how a small non-profit has clergy of all faiths across America learning about and then giving sermons on food waste – each from their own faith perspective. 
Audience: Faith community

Food Waste Costing More Than You Thought
Half of  the produce in America (including 11 billion pounds of locally grown fresh food) is never consumed. Learn the costs of food waste and some of the simple sustainable solutions to the problem.
Audience: General public, gardeners

AmpleHarvest.org – No Food Left Behind
Challenges encountered by great ideas and innovations in the non-profit realm and why we should welcome risking success.
Audience: Philanthropic groups, investors, government

America’s Food Safety Net – How We Fight Hunger With One Hand Tied Behind Our Back
While 42 million Americans grow more food in their garden than they can use, preserve or give to friends,  50 million Americans nationwide are food insecure. A new disruptive solution enables people to reach into their backyard instead of their back pocket to help end hunger.
Audience:  Gardeners, farmers, general public

My Background

Gary Oppenheimer, a CNN Hero, World Food Prize nominee, lecturer and speaker (including a two TED presentations) and a Google Tech Talk, 2013 Purpose Prize FellowPoints of Light Tribute winner, Huffington Post’s “Greatest Person of the Day” and “2011 Game Changer“, winner of the Russell Berrie Foundation’s “Making A Difference” award, winner of the Glynwood 2011 “Wave of the Future” award, winner of the 2012 Elfenworks “In Harmony With Hope” award, Echoing Green semifinalist and founder of AmpleHarvest.org now makes his home in the mountains of northern New Jersey after having lived on a boat on the Hudson River in Manhattan since 1978. He is also a Master Gardener, Rutgers Environmental Steward, former community garden director, Environmental Commissioner in northern New Jersey, an avid gardener and long distance cyclist.

An early pioneer in the electronic mail,  produced what is believe to be the first “ezine” – published from 1985 to 1996 – while working from a home office located on the boat.

Aware of the increasing hunger problem in America and, in 2009, after seeing the amount of wasted food in the community garden as well as other gardens around the country, he created AmpleHarvest.org – a nationwide program enabling America’s 42 million home and community gardeners to donate their bounty to thousands of food pantries nationwide.

Named CNN Hero a year later, he was introduced on the Larry King Live show which was followed by a live interview with CNN anchor Ali Velshi.

He has appeared in numerous radio interviews and his work has been the subject of countless blogs and newspaper articles.

Because AmpleHarvest.org works closely with First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative to improve fresh food access at thousands of food pantries nationwide, he had the opportunity to meet the President and First Lady and she subsequently highlightedAmpleHarvest.org in a speech in early 2012.

Founder of AmpleHarvest.org

He enjoys boating, hiking, farming (chickens for eggs and vegetables) and attacking challenges of all sorts. He is a firm believer in the notion that to do the impossible, you must first believe it isn’t.


Audience tweeting while listening…….

Sampling of other feedback….

  • “Your words inspired me.” -K. Robinson – George Washington Carver Centenial Series
  • “That was a nice talk, an eye opener. -S. Fall – George Washington Carver Centenial Series
  • Our Community Partners continue to buzz about your presentation…there has been a true enthusiasm among them to do more for the communities, including introducing fresh produce. This is very exciting and we have you to thank for creating the buzz! -A. Wilcox – Orange County Food Bank
  • “I remember you and the powerful speech you delivered. -A Asbogun – Tuskegee University
  • “…your presentation was a clear highlight for many of our students” M. Weinstein – U of Maryland

Previous Speech Topics



Newfoundland, New Jersey


Available Upon Request


Food waste/recovery - especially building a nationwide solution to both the waste of locally grown fresh food and the lack of fresh food at the nations food pantries. Challenges of innovation in the nonprofit space

Available to Verified Event Organizers Only

Contact Me