Marni advises clients on policy, advocacy, and strategy matters. With nearly two decades of experience in the private, non-profit, and government sectors, Marni is an expert in strategic thinking, advocacy and analysis, particularly in the areas of food and agriculture, political advocacy and strategy, non-profit and small business management, and organizational governance.
A native of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Marni graduated from The George Washington University with a degree with high honors in International Economics, and received her J.D. with honors from the University of Chicago Law School. She is a member of the New York Bar. In addition to her professional skills she has a passion for cooking delicious local food, and received a Culinary Arts diploma from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, France.
A trained attorney, Marni clerked for United States Circuit Judge John M. Duhe in Lafayette, LA; practiced law (focusing on antitrust and commercial litigation) in Washington, DC; and served as counsel to Senator Herb Kohl on the Senate Judiciary Committee. She also served as Vice President of Government Affairs and General Counsel for the Organic Trade Association, where she represented the interests of the organic food, fiber and agriculture sector in Washington, DC. There, she developed deep relationships with participants in the organic sector – from farmer to processor to certifier to government enforcer; crafted and implemented government affairs strategies in the interest of Organic Trade Association’s mission and its members; and engaged Congress and federal and state agencies to further those policy goals. She also sat on OTA’s Governance Committee, where among other things she was responsible for drafting and revising bylaws.
Marni was the North American representative on the International Working Group on Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), and a member of Food Policy Action’s Vote Advisory Council. Marni also recently served as Managing Director of the Cookbook Project, a 501(c)(3) dedicated to empowering people to create healthier and more sustainable communities through food, nutrition education, and cooking.
Marni was invited to participate in the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movement (IFOAM) Organic Leadership Course, and will receive her certificate in February 2020.
Marni teaches “Foundations of Food Policy”, a course in the Political Science department at Tulane University. She also sits on the advisory board of Shift Change, a New Orleans organization working to make food, beverage, and nightlife spaces safer for all, with a focus on sexual violence education, prevention, intervention, and response for bar and restaurant industry professionals; and on the Board of Directors of Culinaria Center for Food Law, Policy, and Culture, a policy institute focused on fostering a food system beneficial to producers, consumers, and the environment.