Joe Thomashefski

Print this page Email this page

Current Work: Server at Giovanni Ristorante

Degree: M.S. in Sustainable Practice

Undergraduate Degree: Michigan State University, B.S. in Advertising

LinkedIn Profile


I guess few people ever take a straight and direct route in life but I may be the poster child for taking the long road! I attended Michigan State University and received a degree from the College of Communications in Advertising in 2001. After spending my last semester in Europe, I backpacked for four months. I soon discovered how much effort was paid to recycling. Places like Sweden had recycle bins in youth hostels! Upon my return to Ann Arbor, I decided to move to Nashville with my sister who was to attend Belmont. After a terrible back injury I was bedridden for 4 months and left with only my tv and a guitar. I started writing and my reasons for moving to Nashville shifted from business to music. 

I’d always had a love for the earth and nature and almost became a veterinarian. Living in Nashville (not a very green city) I became disgusted with how much waste took place in personal and business life. The realization of the lack of effort dismayed me. I was introduced to the “organic community” and began growing some of my own food and eating well, but still was not satisfied. 

After 7 years of traveling, playing and writing, I decided to try business again but I’d grown to disagree with the consumerism lifestyle that I saw in our nation. I no longer had the desire to sell goods people had no need for. Furthermore, I wanted to change the goods we do need to be more eco-friendly. I didn’t think the organic world had any good press and to truly catch on, realized the prices for natural products would need to come down.   Having drastically changed my lifestyle I decided to pursue a degree in nutrition. My advisors at Lipscomb saw my desire for healthy food systems and introduced me to the sustainable practices program. I’m not sure if I want to pursue my own business ideas, try to influence policy and legislation or some combination; but I know the world is changing and I want to be part of the pioneers who blaze that trail.