ANASTASIA COLE PLAKIAS
Co-founder and Chief Operating Officer
Anastasia Cole Plakias is co-founder and Vice President of Brooklyn Grange Rooftop Farm. An accomplished public speaker, award-winning writer, and published photographer, Anastasia is a passionate and outspoken crusader for fresh, healthy foods and greener, more sustainable cities. She works to leverage Brooklyn Grange as a platform for positive conversations about food and farming, and a resource for community building.
Her love of food began early, cooking up elaborate meals in the tiny, galley kitchen of her family’s West Village, NYC apartment. After working as a freelance writing for magazines, Anastasia spent several years working in corporate hospitality, taking on projects ranging from event production, content creation, marketing and public relations, and of course, eating her way through the menus at New York City’s best restaurants. As a founding partner of Brooklyn Grange, she has run the business’ sales department, created its events program, and manages the farm’s communications and external affairs. Her laser focus on details has been crucial to the smooth operations of the business as it has grown from year to year.
A Co-founder of the non-profit, City Growers, on whose board she is an active member, she presented alongside the organization’s Founding Director at TedX Long Island City. In 2014 and 2015, she was an instructor of Natural Gourmet Institute’s Sustainable Farming Certificate Course, and regularly teaches a workshop aimed at entrepreneurs interested in launching their own urban farming business. An energetic and inspiring speaker, she has presented to audiences at the 2019 InTents Business conference in San Diego, CA; the 2018 Positive Economy Forum in Le Havre, France; the 2017 Potluck Hospitality Conference in Los Angeles; the 2016 High Water Women Impact Investing conference; the 2014 Energivie Summit in Strasbourg, France; the 2013 Slow Food NYC/Northeast Organic Farmer’s Alliance NY Producer’s Conference, several Northeast Organic Farmers Association conferences, and in 2011, the Museum of Natural History. In 2016, Anastasia published a book about the business, The Farm on the Roof: What Brooklyn Grange Taught us About Entrepreneurship, Community, and Growing a Sustainable Business (Avery Press, April, 2016); she also narrated the audio book. In 2017, Anastasia was named as one of the NYC Food Policy Center’s “40 Under 40” individuals working to transform the food system.
When Anastasia isn’t zipping from farm to farm on her bicycle or leading a tour for a visiting delegation of city planners, she loves to cozy up with a good book in her apartment in Ditmas Park, or hike the Catskills.