Who Are We

Jodi Balis

VP Communications/Co-Creator

Jodi Balis is a Registered Dietitian living in the DC metro area, and has been a cooking instructor for 10 years. She has been featured twice on “Good Morning America” and made several appearances on local T.V. and radio shows, demonstrating meal planning and healthy eating on a budget.

Jodi is currently Director of Nutrition Education Programs at the Capital Area Food Bank in Washington DC, where she oversees cooking and nutrition programs that teach low-income adults and children how to eat healthy with limited resources. Jodi is also owner of Red Lentil Consulting, where she helps clients gain cooking skills and meal-planning skills through hands on “kitchen sessions” in the home. Previously a Nutrition Educator with the Food Stamp Nutrition Education Program in Maryland, Jodi trained elementary school teachers to incorporate nutrition into their lessons, and directly taught elementary school aged youth about cooking, gardening, and healthy eating.

Before moving to the DC metro area, she was Nutrition Education Manager at a food bank in St. Louis, Missouri, and a cooking instructor at Whole Foods, Wild Oats, Fontbonne University, St. Louis Community College, and other places in the St. Louis metro area. Jodi also regularly appeared on a cooking segment for Health Matters, a local St. Louis television show.

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Elise Jaffe

VP Operations/Co-Creator

Elise Jaffe is the Owner and Executive Producer of Big Teeth Productions in Chicago, IL. Elise has been interested in children’s programming and production since her childhood. Her passion for producing and directing theater resulted in many summers teaching acting, writing and improv to children.

Her Undergraduate Honors Thesis at Indiana University “Are Broadcasters Making the Grade?” was an account of Children’s Programming following the imposed FCC guidelines in 1996. Her career in Children’s television began at Nickelodeon (Blue’s Clues) and Lancit Media (Reading Rainbow, Puzzle Place, Outward Bound). Since moving into advertising in 1999, Elise has produced at agencies such as Grey New York, JWT and DraftFCB with a special focus on the child market. Until starting Big Teeth, the highlight of her career was serving as the head of production at G-Whiz, a youth based advertising and marketing subsidiary of Grey. Her past clients include Hasbro, Topps, Dairy Queen, Jif, Kraft and Nestle.

Though the world of Advertising was a profitable place to be, Elise’s moral struggle with selling toys and candy to kids makes her even more motivated to create quality children’s programming.

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Kerry O'Tolski

Creator

Kerry O'Tolski is a producer living in Chicago, IL. Kerry has been involved in the television industry for many years dating back to her work as a child actor for television commercials and local theater productions.

After receiving her degree in Telecommunication Arts from Butler University she worked for the Children's Television Workshop in New York City in their International production research division for Sesame Street.

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