Joyful Living Panelists Announced

We are proud to announce our panel of experts for Gamble’s inaugural fundraiser breakfast, “Joyful Living: Trending in House and Garden”. Food writer Carolyn Jung, interior designer Melinda Mandell, and horticulturalist Janet Sluis will join Gamble Garden Director Richard Hayden to discuss trends in home, garden, tech, food, and health.

Follow our speakers and moderator on Instagram: Carolyn Jung , Janet Sluis, Melinda MandellRichard Hayden and Gamble Garden.

Carolyn Jung

Carolyn is an award-winning food and wine writer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is the recipient of a James Beard Award for feature writing about restaurants / and chefs, a Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism Award of Excellence for diversity writing, an award from the American Association of Sunday and Features Editors, and numerous first-place honors from the Association of Food Journalists, and the Peninsula Press Club. In 2015, she was named an IACP finalist for “narrative food writing.”

For 11 years, she was the food writer/editor for the San Jose Mercury News. She also was a contributor to the “Good Living” section of Gourmet magazine, and to the book, “The Slow Food Guide to San Francisco and the Bay Area.” Her work has appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco magazine, Silicon Valley magazine, EatingWellCoastal LivingFood ArtsWine Spectator, Every Day with Rachael Ray, Plate magazine, Via magazine, East Bay Express, Oakland magazine, Alameda magazine, Edible Marin & Wine CountryEdible Silicon Valley, and other publications, including the online site, Tasting Table San Francisco.

Her first cookbook, “San Francisco Chef’s Table” (Lyons Press), was published in winter 2013. Her second cookbook, “East Bay Cooks,” will debut September 2019.

In 2008, she created, a food, and wine blog that features interviews with celebrated chefs, reviews of intriguing cookbooks and products, the scoop on new restaurants, irresistible recipes, and her singular take on how food touches every aspect of our lives. In 2009, her blog was awarded second place for “Best Food Blog” in the nation by the Association of Food Journalists.

Janet Sluis

Janet is a Berkeley based horticulturist specializing in low water, regionally- appropriate, easy-care plants. As the collection’s curator, she is responsible for selecting and evaluating which plants are ultimately chosen to carry the Sunset Western Garden Collection label. Focused on replacing thirsty, labor-intensive varieties with colorful, resilient alternatives, she works with breeders, hybridizers, and nurseries all over the world. Her plant collection test garden is featured in The Sunset Western Garden Book of Easy Care Plantings and can be visited in person as part of the Sunset test gardens located in iconic Cornerstone in Sonoma, California.

As a sixth-generation member of a Dutch seed family, Janet suspects that plants are in her DNA. By the age of six, she was hybridizing ranunculus and growing kale in her garden. After studying marketing, horticulture, and agricultural business, she spent twenty years in production and product development for large wholesale plant nurseries on the west coast. When Janet is not traveling in search of new plants, you can find her pulling weeds and battling slugs in her organic Berkeley test garden.

Melinda Mandell

As principal designer at Melinda Mandell Interior Design, Melinda is dedicated to the details of her clients’ day-to-day lives, and understands how each of the smallest decisions affects the function of their homes. The firm thrives off of designer-client relationships and loves collaborating to create the beautiful, custom homes that clients desire. The finished product is a home that nurtures body and soul, reflecting clients’ personalities, and supporting their lifestyle.

Melinda holds a Bachelor of Arts in Interior Design from Seattle Pacific University and honed her skills at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles. Melinda began her career at Jennifer Bevan Interiors, working with elite and international clientele. In 2011, she launched Melinda Mandell Interior Design. She has had the pleasure of working closely with clients across California to create homes that are tailored just for them.

Richard Hayden

The event is moderated by Gamble Garden’s Garden Director Richard Hayden.

As Garden Director, Richard manages the entire Gamble Garden property, including a new watershed garden. He also oversees the horticultural staff and over 50 “Dirty Knees” volunteers.

Previous to Gamble, Richard served as the Head Gardener for the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County where he managed the Nature Gardens, a 3.5-acre wildlife habitat garden that serves as a living laboratory for the study and educational promotion of biodiversity and landscape sustainability in urban Los Angeles.

Richard also oversaw the planting and maintenance of the gardens at the La Brea Tar Pits and Museum. In his role at the museum, he collaborated with scientists, educators, and fundraisers to promote the Nature Gardens as a leading site for the study of urban nature, and to demonstrate the principles of sustainable landscaping. He taught classes, lead tours, and gave talks related to habitat gardening, planting with natives and best horticultural management practices including soil health, composting, and organic pest management.

Prior to working at the Natural History Museum, he was the Principal Landscape Designer at Hayden Landscape Design where he enjoyed a 20-year career designing and maintaining gardens around the country.

He served as the Los Angeles District President of the Association. of Professional Landscape Designers from 2011 to 2013. His gardens have been published in a number of publications, including Architectural Digest, Elle Decor, and Martha Stewart Living.