Who We Are
Connect the Community Foundation, Inc. is a 501c3 nonprofit charity whose mission is “to promote healthy eating opportunities and education by supporting local growers, artisans, and nonprofits.” We do this by accomplishing the following objectives:
- Connect healthy fresh food to the people who need alternatives
- Support Florida growers with tools for year-round production
- Connect young farmers with funding opportunities to improve local yield and variety of food items
- Connect farmers with local buyers at local markets, health fairs and promotional events
- Promote local food awareness
- Purchase perishable food for the food bank(s)
- Support local farmers and artisan business development through:
- Farm/food business incubator
- Sponsorship opportunities to nonprofits, farmers, chefs, artisans, etc. to be vendors
- Grants to invest in food/health nonprofits/business startups
Board of Directors
Lisa Capozio, MS, MA, LCN, President
Lisa is the founder and managing partner of SWFL Farmers Market, LLC. She also serves as Vice President of Brand Education for Sundari, LLC. At Sundari, Lisa’s global division is responsible for the development, implementation and training of Sundari spa treatments, products and services. Sundari offers a full range of face and body treatments, Ayurvedic counseling, retail management and Sundari Yoga.
Lisa is a clinical nutritionist, massage therapist, esthetician and a certified Yoga Alliance instructor, with twenty-five years in the health, wellness and spa industry. Lisa is a dynamic leader, speaker and educator with a passion for creating opportunities for everyone to reach their health potential. Combining the best of western and eastern health philosophies and practices, Lisa finds that her students are able to reach beyond our “disease-care” culture to facilitate sustainable “health-care” results.
She completed her education at Emory University (BS-Atlanta, GA,) University of Miami (MA-Miami, FL) and The University of Central Florida (MS-Orlando, FL) and has accrued additional certifications in Ayurvedic Practice, Pediatric Clinical Nutrition, Adolescent Counseling and Therapeutic Medical Massage. Lisa’s first text book, “Spa Management-An Introduction,” was published by Pearson in April 2011. Lisa is a member of the Florida Gulf Coast University Spa Advisory Board, American Massage Therapy Association, Yoga Alliance and the International Spa Association. Lisa lives in Florida with her husband Joe and dog Bailey.
Matt Visaggio, MPA, Vice President
Matt Visaggio lives in Fort Myers, FL with his wife and two children. He’s spent time working in the public and political sectors. He owns two small businesses, a public relations firm and the Health Park Farmers Market. He is the founder of the SWFL Sustainability Summit and FLSustainability.com.
Visaggio & Co. was founded by Matt Visaggio during his time as a staff member in the Florida Legislature. During his time working for nonprofits and the legislature, Matt was constantly thinking about ways he could make the biggest impact without ever being elected to a public office. He has always had a passion for serving individuals and putting the needs and goals of others above his own. The best way to make a lasting difference, Matt thought, was to figure out a way to work on inspiring projects with inspiring people to make a change. And, we’re proud to say – it’s working.
He teaches college courses at Florida SouthWestern State College and Soutwestern New Hampshire University. Academically, he is interested in research about the what the founders of the United States meant for education to empower citizens to preserve the republic and freedom.
Ellen Ridley, MSW, Secretary
Ellen Ridley has over twenty years of social services and community development experience. She moved to Cape Coral with her family as a child. After graduating from the University of Central Florida with a degree in Political Science, she joined the Peace Corps in Paraguay. While in Paraguay, Ellen worked in the countryside promoting better nutrition and hygiene practices. After five years in South America, Ellen returned to Lee County to pursue a MSW degree from FGCU. Locally, Ellen has worked for Catholic Charities, Lee County Department of Human Services and the Lee County School District. She believes collaboration and grassroots organizing are key elements to building a better and stronger community.
Dave Crawford, M.A , M.S., Treasurer
Bio coming soon!
Bio coming soon!