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Meet the CESA Purchasing Staff

Lisa Melby

Co-coordinator, CESA Purchasing

Since 2004, Lisa has supported CESA Purchasing in numerous roles including contract development and deployment, the creator, developer and executioner of formal procurement and partnerships. Among her other duties, she is currently the CESA Nutrition Director.  The CESA Nutrition program has more than 60 member districts with combined purchasing totally over $18 million in the Prime Vendor program.  Other Nutrition offerings include formal procurement for USDA Foods, bread, milk, and produce.  Before starting with CESA Purchasing in August of 2004, Lisa earned her Bachelors of Business Administration from the UW-Whitewater, and worked in banking, payroll, customer service, and education. Lisa is a member of numerous statewide professional associations. She enjoys spending time with her four kids, her grandson, and a good book.

Cynthia Holt

Co-coordinator, CESA Purchasing

Since 2012, Cynthia has supported CESA Purchasing by working with vendor partners on statewide contracts, overseeing marketing strategies, and supporting Farm to School initiatives within the Nutrition Program. After earning a BA in Humanities from the University of Chicago, Cynthia spent her career supporting non-profits focused on youth, the arts, and environmental issues. In addition to holding numerous non-profit management, grant writing, and other professional certifications, Cynthia is an active member of many state organizations. She loves helping her local community by serving on various boards and managing the town’s farmers market. When not in meetings, she spends lots of time in her garden with her husband and their dog. 

Susan Peterman

Nutrition Consultant, CESA Purchasing

With over 15 years of school nutrition experience, as well as 30 years of institutional food service administration with large systems, Susan provides operational, nutritional, policy, and administrative support to the more than 60 school districts in the CESA Purchasing Nutrition Program.  Susan provides hands-on training and specialized project support to a dozen Tier 2 districts within the program. She earned a BS in dietetics from UW-Stevens Point and is both a School Nutrition Specialist and a federally licensed registered dietitian with a pediatric specialty. Susan was recently featured as the host in Chop! Chop! - a statewide professional development video series training food service professionals in how to use local, whole foods in their schools. 

Michelle Escamilla

Community Outreach, AmeriCorps Farm to School Program

Michelle serves as the Community Outreach Member for AmeriCorps and the CESA Purchasing Farm to School Program.Michelle works with food service directors acts as the liaison between schools and their communities to identify local food purchasing opportunities, help with the development of school gardens, and recruit volunteers to assist with programs. With a Bachelor’s degree in Leadership and Organizational Studies from UW-Oshkosh, she will be completing her Master’s in Public Health in December 2015. Michelle is very active in volunteering and enjoys spending time with her family for whom she--not surprisingly--enjoys cooking healthy foods.

Joe Klein

Nutrition Educator, AmeriCorps Farm to School Program

Joe serves as the Nutrition Educational Member for AmeriCorps and the CESA Purchasing Farm to School Program. Joe recently graduated with a degree in education from UW Madison and has spent the previous year student teaching in many districts in the area. His primary focus is on science and history with a keen interest in gardening and experiential education. Joe and his family live in Stoughton. 


Gary Albrecht

Agency Administrator, CESA 2

CESA Purchasing is a statewide program of CESA 2. As the Agency Administrator, Gary leads and manages all programs and operations for CESA 2, and has served in this position for 13 years. With degrees in music, music education, and educational leadership, he has earned a Ph. D in curriculum and instruction. In his previous role as superintendent, he led the district through the passage of a $25 million building referendum and a construction renovation project that earned the high school an award for the first closed-loop geothermal system in a major facility in the state. An active musician and conductor, hunter, and traveler, he is also a self-proclaimed “gym rat”.

Bill Barrow

Financial Director, CESA 2

CESA Purchasing is a statewide program of CESA 2. After teaching business, coaching athletics, and serving as business manager for two different Wisconsin districts, Bill joined CESA 2 in 1996 to head the financial services department, where he oversees all accounting and budgeting matters, including financial oversight of CESA Purchasing. He earned both his BSE in Business Education/Coaching and his MSE in School Business Management from UW-Whitewater. Bill is an active member of state and national organizations and currently serves on a number of teams and committees within CESA 2.