Annual Summit Brings Together National Experts, Practitioners and Researchers to Discuss Solving Hunger and Poverty

October 1, 2019
Together at the Table Summit

“Together at the Table,” hosted by the Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty, will address migration crisis, hunger’s cost on health care and holistic poverty recommendations for community-based intervention

Media Contact: Lori Fogleman, Baylor University Media and Public Relations, 254-710-6275
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WACO, Texas (Oct. 1, 2019) – Following news that food insecurity has dropped for the first time below pre-recession levels, Baylor University’s newly named Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty will hold its annual Together at the Table Hunger and Poverty Summit Oct. 2-4 at the Bill Daniel Student Center, 1311 S. Fifth St., on the Baylor campus.

The summit brings together hundreds of attendees from across the country and from different sectors for three days of focused learning. Prominent experts will address the migration crisis, hunger’s cost on health care and holistic poverty recommendations for community-based intervention, while top scholars and practitioners will lead breakout sessions that focus on public policy, community organizing, health and nutrition, federal nutrition programs and food-security research.

“Researchers, policy advocates and practitioners alike are thrilled with this week’s news that food insecurity is below pre-recession levels for the first time according to USDA,” said Jeremy Everett, M.Div. ‘01, founder of the Texas Hunger Initiative and executive director of the Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty.

“We will host 350 community leaders, researchers, policy makers and students at our 2019 Together at the Table Hunger and Poverty Summit, which will give us an opportunity to discuss how we accomplished this task while strategically planning to end hunger entirely,” Everett said. “Our lineup of speakers and presenters is second to none and will certainly inspire us as we work together to end hunger for everyone.”

Speakers include:

  • Alan Cohen, president and CEO of the Child Poverty Action Lab (CPAL).
  • John Garland, pastor of the San Antonio Mennonite Church.
  • Jackson Griggs, CEO of Heart of Texas Community Health Centers.
  • Elaine Hernandez, regional director for Baylor’s Texas Hunger Initiative (THI) McAllen office.
  • Victor J. Hinojosa, Ph.D., associate professor of political science in the Honors Program in Baylor’s Honors College and director of the Baylor Migration Project.
  • Michael Hole, physician, professor, researcher, author and entrepreneur at the University of Texas at Austin, where he is joint faculty at Dell Medical School and the LBJ School of Public Affairs.
  • Angela Olige, assistant commissioner of the Texas Department of Agriculture who oversees the Food and Nutrition Division.
  • Cristal Retana, city council member for Farmers Branch and manager of government and community relations for Children’s Health.
  • Valerie Borum Smith, M.D., pediatrician at St. Paul Children’s Foundation in Tyler, Texas, where she leads the Community-Centered Health Home Initiative.
  • Elaine Waxman, senior fellow in the Income and Benefits Policy Center at the Urban Institute and part of the leadership team of the Institute’s From Safety Net to Solid Ground initiative.
  • Donald E. Wesson, M.D., president of the Baylor Scott & White Health and Wellness Center at Juanita J. Craft Recreation Center and senior vice president of Baylor Scott & White Weight Management Services.

Summit participants also will have the opportunity to visit Waco nonprofits doing cutting-edge work, including:

  • Jubilee Food Market & Urban R.E.A.P., 1505 N. 15th St.
  • Waco Food Hub, 420 Dallas St.
  • World Hunger Relief, Inc. Farm, 356 Spring Lake Rd.
  • Da’ Shack Farmer’s Market, 925 Houston St.

More information about Together at the Table Hunger and Poverty Summit is available at


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 17,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 90 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.