Meet Our Staff


Mahalia Iwugo

Grant Writer
Hometown: Washington, DC

Mahalia is dedicated to movements for social change. They found their way into grant writing by working with a variety of organizations and nonprofits focused on food justice, sustainability and education, immigration justice, and LGBTQIA+ rights and freedom. They are deeply familiar with the nonprofit world and have an understanding of the necessity of grants to be able to fund and make sustainable the work of organizations like these. They have taken on a variety of roles–from farmer, to educator, to administrator, to fundraiser and grants and development roles. A lover of writing, they have found a home crafting grants, speaking of the power of movements they believe in. Most recently, Mahalia worked as a farmer and educator with City Blossoms, co-facilitating groups of high schoolers from DC public school to engage with farming and food justice work, building their own cooperative business around the produce they grew. While doing this work, they crafted grants to fund the projects they were building at the organization and with the students.

Mahalia continues to be involved in the urban agriculture and food justice networks and conversations in the DMV. They hold a BA from Vassar College in Urban Studies, with a focus on African Studies and Geography.

Outside of work, Mahalia spends their time as an artist creating works of oil painting and collage, slow cooking meals, and reading books.

What is your hidden talent?

I love to cook. My favorite things to cook are dishes spiced with hot peppers and slowly cooked, complex rice dishes.

What punctuation mark would you be and why?

I resonate with the question mark. I have a lot of questions, and relate to things through curiosity.

What is your grammatical pet peeve?

When people say they could care less but mean to say that they couldn’t care less!

What is your favorite way to spend a Sunday afternoon?

I like to burn incense, read, cook a nice lunch, and make some art.

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