Skip to main content

Read about the Certified Gardening Instructor experts, who will be speaking on the 2021 Grow Your Own Webinar! Hosted by PlantPure Communities and the Square Foot Gardening Foundation, this webinar will showcase the Square Foot Gardening Method. You will hear from the gardening experts about getting kids involved, urban gardening, and what to plant. Everyone is welcome to join! Read more and register here.

Debra Stuart

Rahway Garden Club

Debra became a Certified Master Gardener in 2014, Certified Master Tree Steward in 2015, and started running the JFK Community Garden in 2016. She went on to become Certified in Community Garden Management in 2017, certified as a SFG Instructor in 2019. Debra grows her own vegetables, and will put them up for winter, grow lettuce, celery, and such through the winter months in her greenhouse.  Her greatest enjoyment is teaching children and adults how to grow their own food.

Emilio Panasci

Founder and Executive Director Urban Agriculture Cooperative

For UAC, Emilio manages staff, development, and project budgets, completes grants, and oversees the daily work of the organization, including managing gardens, farmer’s markets, and composting projects. Emilio has a Bachelor’s from Rutgers College Honors Program and his Masters in City and Regional Planning from Rutgers Bloustein School of Planning and Policy Development, with a focus on community development organizations. Emilio has worked 12 years in non-profits and urban agricultural projects, with a passion for social justice, community development, healthy sustainable living practices, and integrated neighborhoods.

Bob Markey


Since 1975, Bob has volunteered in countless garden-related community projects in and around his hometown of Rahway, New Jersey. 

Bob earned his Square Foot Gardening Instructor Certification in September 2008 while attending a workshop in Eden, Utah. “I had the privilege of working closely with the founder and best-selling author of Square Foot Gardening, Mel Bartholomew. That was pretty special” Bob noted. 

Bob is most proud of the Square Foot Gardening program that he created in 2008 for YMCA summer campers. “Since its inception, the program has taught over 1000 summer campers the basics of gardening. 

The Square Foot Gardening Program for Y campers is now operating at three NJ YMCA’s and it’s Bob’s dream that someday YMCA USA will adopt and implement his program at other YMCA’s around the country. 

Amie Guyette Hall, CHHC, AADPT


Amie is known as “The Square Foot Gardening Health Coach” helping all ages and abilities to boost their health from a box, a Square Foot Gardening box. Amie completed her SFG Certified Instructor requirements in 2009 in Burlington, VT spending 3 fabulous days with Mel, his team and other attendees. Amie earned her Health Coaching Certification in 2007 with The Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Square Foot Gardening projects tied to education and hands on experience have included grant writer and provider of health and wellness programs tied to curriculum, school gardens and showcase gardens. Amie has worked with adults on the Autism spectrum, special needs youth, underserved youth in farming and life skills programs. Recent projects find her managing a local restaurant garden, and outdoor homeschooling at a local farm, as well as creating and maintaining home gardens for busy momma’s raising young children.

Althea Llewellyn

Environmental Educator, Speaker, and Certified Square Foot Gardening Instructor  

Althea is also a Master Tree Steward and a certified Master Gardener. As a certified Square Foot Gardening Instructor, Althea has taught SFG to hundreds of YMCA Summer Campers throughout Union and Essex Counties.

As a Master Gardener, she currently serves on the Board of the Master Gardeners of Union County NJ, and co-manages a Berry patch at their demonstration garden site at Trailside, located in Watchung Reservation, NJ.

On staff at a Historic Public Garden in Summit NJ,  she develops environmental programs, and conducts  gardening workshops and lectures which reaches hundreds of adults and children with the Square Foot Gardening method.  

Althea has a simple message: Anyone can develop a green thumb! She focuses her efforts on empowering individuals towards greater health and a greater quality of life, through gardening.