Mary Grace Stoneking

Graduate Research Assistant

Mary Grace Stoneking is a first year Master of Public Policy candidate.

Before attending Sanford School of Public Policy, she worked at the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee as its SNAP Community Outreach Advocate. At Legal Aid Mary Grace provided outreach and education about Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eligibility, program requirements, and program changes to individuals, groups, and organizations, with a focus on immigrant groups and communities. She also provided case management to individual clients with SNAP/food insecurity issues while analyzing systemic issues with the program within the 48 Middle and East Tennessee counties served by Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee. From 2016-2018 she served as a FoodCorps AmeriCorps service member building garden and nutrition programs in low-income elementary schools in rural Arkansas. She is a 2016 graduate from Rhodes College in Memphis, TN where she worked with Grow Memphis (now Memphis Tilth) building gardens in blighted communities of Memphis and was a member of the Food Advisory Council of Shelby County.

Mary Grace is now using her experience with SNAP and other federal programs to help conduct research for our Durham Food History Project. She is developing a historical overview of how these federal food programs developed in the nation, North Carolina, and in Durham. Her research has an emphasis on access and usage intersections, racial equity, and shifts in how we manage hunger.