Meet the Lighter Team
Anuj Patel is a seasoned healthcare executive and entrepreneur passionate about creating amazing products designed to improve people’s health and wellness. Patel was previously Vice President at iCarbonX, a digital health company focused on providing personalized health and wellness recommendations based on artificial intelligence and a combination of an individual’s biological, behavioral and psychological data. Patel holds a BS in Economics from Boston University and a Masters in Business Administration from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.
Alexis Fox has dedicated her life to fixing our broken food system. With 20 years experience under her belt, she has worked to usher in the future of food as attorney, political leader and entrepreneur. Fox has been featured in Forbes, the Boston Globe, and other national media. She is recognized as an international expert and speaker on the Future of Food. Fox also spent three years as an adjunct Professor of Leadership at Emerson College.
As a mom, athlete, and Co-Founder of Lighter, Micah Risk personally and professionally dedicates her life to helping people eat better. She is a graduate of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, sits on the advisory board of the Friedman Entrepreneurship program, and has a rich background in behavior health and chronic disease research, including work with the World Health Organization.
Jonathan Olson brings over 25 years of healthcare information technology expertise and a passion to improve people's health through food-as-medicine to Lighter. As an inventor and entrepreneur, he has led the technology teams of a number of healthcare informatics start-ups, such as TheraDoc, in pioneering new markets in infection control, antimicrobial stewardship and clinical decision support systems.
Head of Product
Patrick Wesonga has almost 13 years of experience delivering impactful products across a variety of industries, including Financial Services, Digital Identity, and Healthcare. As someone who had their life changed by better nutrition, he brings a passion to expand access to those who have traditionally been underserved. In his downtime, he also serves as an advisor to emerging startups. Patrick earned his degree in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University.
As a founding employee at Lighter, Angelique Rivard is committed to building a more sustainable, compassionate, & healthier food system through nutrition science & technology. She uses her background in business, finance, & law to manage operations and increase efficiency & optimization throughout the company. Previously, Rivard held positions at the Center for Environmental Legal Studies, PLS; the Investigations Dept. of the Westchester County DA's Office; the HSUS; and the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, Fordham U. Rivard holds a JD from Pace Law School, a Masters in Ethics from Fordham University, and a Bachelors in Business Administration from Fordham University.
Director of Clinical Nutrition
Carra Richling is a registered dietitian and certified health coach with a comprehensive background of over 30 years of experience in health, wellness and lifestyle medicine, with degrees in Human Development & Family Studies; Nutrition & Dietetics with graduate work in Sports Medicine and extensive training in integrated health and behavior change methods that promote sustainable lifestyle changes. She is passionate about food-as-medicine and empowering people to follow a plant-based lifestyle for optimal health, performance, and well-being. She has experienced the power of a food-as-medicine both personally and professionallyas she has seen it transform lives with her previous work as Senior Dietitian and Clinical Manager for Ornish Lifestyle Medicine, Registered Dietitian and consultant for The Preventive Medicine Research Institute, Director of Preventive Cardiology at the Boulder Sports Medicine Center and Heart Institute, Senior Trainer/ Registered Dietitian at The Institute of Health Solutions, and over 15 years of private practice.
Director of Engineering - LighterLabeled
An award-winning tech veteran with 20+ years of experience, Alex Shopov devotes his tech skills to serving his passion for helping people live healthier lives. As an avid athlete, Alex also personally understands the importance of eating well.
Jonathan Wohl is a creative technologist committed to building socially responsible software. With years of experience at organizations such as the New York Federal Reserve Bank and Columbia University’s Earth Institute, he has built critical interfaces for large institutions and created open-source tools designed to improve energy and healthcare access in remote parts of the world.
Kay Sheils was previously Director of Business Development at CircleUp, a firm focused on early-stage entrepreneurs. Before CircleUp, Sheils was a Managing Director of Investment Banking at Seaport Global, where over twelve years she led numerous financings and advisories for companies ranging from pre-revenue to $300 million and specialized in helping entrepreneurs build for growth and structuring complex capital. She spent the early part of her career in New York at Morgan Stanley and Jefferies. Sheils holds a BS in Economics from Duke University and a master’s degree from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.
Ron Pastore's mission is to put his award-winning tech expertise to work for our heroes in healthcare. He has a wealth of professional experience with companies such as HuffPost, AOL, Dell and Verizon Wireless.
Director of Healthcare Partnerships
Tyler Curry has deep experience helping build start ups backed by VC firms such as NEA and A16z. He’s successfully been a part of two companies that have been acquired (Backupify by Datto and Onshape by PTC) and joined Lighter to help build and grow the Lighter Health business unit. Tyler is a creative problem solver directing strategy, market discovery, and strategic partnerships. Additionally, Curry helped recruit the core Lighter Health Team.
Director of Customer & Partner Success
Julia Jensen-Wheat has always been fascinated with the “why” behind what people choose to eat. And, the impact that those everyday choices have on the greater world. At Lighter she takes her background in nutrition science and psychology to help our members on their journey to a kinder kitchen each and every day.
Product Design Lead
Craig Silva holds a degree from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. He is an experienced product designer with years of experience working with some of the world’s largest brands and most innovative startups, such as EF Education First, ASICS, Grubhub, Genospace, and Runkeeper among many others. He is passionate about crafting usable and delightful experiences for companies with a meaningful mission.
Product Design Lead
Don Naylor has 15 years of experience in the design world and has always focused on making products that increase user satisfaction and make an impact in the world. He’s been instrumental in product creation from a startup idea to expanding a well established market leader, he continues to focus on making products that increase user satisfaction and make an impact in the world such as Vistaprint, Scipher Medicine, and Maxwell Health.
Analytics Lead / Product Manager
As Analytics Lead and Product Manager at Lighter, Natalie Hunter empowers the team to strategically and efficiently turn ideas, research, and feedback into reality. Hunter holds Master of Public Health and Master of Science in Nutrition Communication degrees from Tufts University, and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Dartmouth College.
Customer Success Manager
Rachel Hangley has worked on the Lighter Customer Success Team since launch. She is passionate about helping people find their path to a wholesome lifestyle that minimizes impact on the planet.
Finance & Account Manager
Prior to Lighter, Tim Wackenreuter worked as the sole operations person at NewStar Capital in Boston with over two billion under management. As a triathlete, Wackenreuter has experienced the power of healthy eating on performance and recovery. In his free time, he loves to surf the coasts of New England and volunteers with the Special Olympics.
Customer Success Team Member & Health Coach
Allison Spears is a Certified Health & Life Coach passionate about supporting people's wellness journeys through plant-based and holistic lifestyle changes. With over 25 years leading sales teams and building businesses in corporate settings, she experienced vast improvements to her own health after changing to a plant-based lifestyle and intentionally reducing her lifestyle stressors. As a wife, mom, and entrepreneur, she understands how to support and guide busy individuals and families as they move toward their wellness goals.