Meet our Team


Vanessa Cross
Executive Director

Vanessa has lived in Newark most of her life, and she now lives in Newark with her husband, Doug, and 3 children: Emmett, Jonathan, and Charlotte. Vanessa came to work with TWG during the spring of 2020 and immediately became invested in and passionate about the mission of our work! She loves working with her hands in the gardens and using her organization and office skills inside. She is so excited to be working with us!


Pam Roberts
Development Coordinator

Pam Roberts has lived in Newark, with her husband Mike, since 2011. They have 4 children and 14 grandchildren. Pam and Mike founded Together We Grow in 2012. Pam has a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration that she earned at the age of 50, and has a strong desire to help others after having her own share of difficulties growing up. Pam speaks to groups about Together We Grow, writes grants and is always busy recruiting volunteers and working hard to Grow Licking County One Garden At A Time! Pam is also a Friend of Together We Grow at the Grand Champion Pumpkin level. 

Kristen Little 
Marketing  Specialist


Kristen first learned about Together We Grow Gardens at our annual fall fundraising Gala. She is passionate about helping others become self-sufficient and decided to come on board with us to help us achieve our mission.  Kristen enjoys working with Together We Grow to bring the community together and help others.


Jennie Mason
Here We Grow Gardens Program Director

Jennie has lived in Alexandria and

 Newark for 24 years with her husband, Doug and 2 dogs, Yogi and Mater. They have 3 children and 5 grandchildren, which we love to spend as much time with them as possible.

She loves being outdoors, working in her yard, quilting and spending time with others. She has been in sales and customer service most her life.  Since both retired she feels like working with Here We grow family will also be a perfect fit with all her positive energy.

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Ben Stamper
Power of Plants
Program Director

Ben has lived in Newark for 25 years and is an alumni of Newark High School. He has a strong passion to educate young minds in Licking County in sustainability and environmentalism. As the Power of Plants Director, he travels to each of the 7 elementary schools in the Newark City School District and teaches the students aspects of gardening and processing luffa gourds into soap. He also designs and hosts fields trips for grades Kindergarten through 8th grade. Ben is also one of the gardeners with Together We grow, maintaining and building gardens throughout Newark, Ohio.


Mike Roberts

Mike Roberts was one of the original founders of Together We Grow. He helped start all the gardens, built hoop houses and sheds at all the gardens and helped to build the greenhouse in 2017. He also served as Board President for the first two years.  

Mike retired from Mount Vernon Nazarene University in 2014 from his position of Coordinator of Telecommunications and Data Management. He also received his bachelor's degree in Business Administration in 1999 from MVNU. He now continues to help the organization with development of gardens and new projects on a part-time basis. 

Mike is married to Pam (Executive Director of Together We Grow) and has four adult children, as well as 14 grandchildren.  


Kim Burgess
Here We Grow Gardens
Garden Assistant


Flower Plant

Kaylynn Saenz
Here We Grow Gardens
Garden Assistant