OUR STORY

How we got started, what our goals are, and our team of PIEoneers

OUR HISTORY - EARLY BEGINNINGS

During the 1995 Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday, our founder Luanne Stovall was watching a documentary of Dr. King's life, when the message of courage, social equity, and empowerment sparked a deep connection within her. Three important questions came to mind.

Why do we celebrate a holiday - any holiday - year after year? What would it take to grow January's MLK Holiday into a thriving model like Thanksgiving, another holiday that honors generosity of the human spirit and our ability to overcome hardship? How can peacemaking be transformed into an everyday practice?

OUR MISSION

PEACE through PIE is a grassroots non-profit Peace Movement. We partner with schools, faith groups, businesses, and community organizations to create programs and experiences that promote the skills and values needed to build a humanistic, culture of peace.

CREATING A CULTURE OF PEACE

So how could we start to build this culture of peace?

Holiday recipes remind us about what matters most. They bring us together with invisible apron strings, weaving back through generations. The MLK Holiday had yet to a grow a special food tradition to symbolize its core message and invite us to the table. That was when Luanne was “called by the PIE”. She chose a favorite recipe and lit the oven. When the pie cooled down, she wrote I Have a Dream on top with red icing and shared it with family and friends. Old Fashioned Buttermilk became the first Peace PIE.

The first public sharing of Peace PIE took place at Sweet Home Missionary Baptist Church in Clarksville, the oldest surviving freedom town west of the Mississippi River, founded by former slaves of Texas Gov. Elisha Pease. Pastor Steve Manning, Choir Directors Shirley and Ed Collins, the Sweet Home congregation, and a team of passionate volunteers hosted the MLK Social attended by over 250 participants.

Since 2009, more than 50,000 people in Austin and across the country have been part of our growing peace movement partnering in Peace through Pie Socials, PIE Circles, and sharing Peace PIE. Join us to connect with fellow PIEoneers and be part of  a new legacy of peace!

OUR TEAM

PEACE through PIE is growing a diverse team with talents, skills, and resources focused on expanding our programs. This involves collaborating with schools, community organizations, faith groups, nonprofits, and businesses to support a sustainable culture of peace. We are actively looking for Board of Directors who share this vision and are passionate about working together to achieve our goals.

WINTON MATTISON

Operations & Finance

Winton believes that strong communities provide crucial support systems, and create the best foil against polarization, tribalism, and 'othering'. He lives by his mantra 'strength is in the power of many moving together', and brings a strong...

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He lives by his mantra 'strength is in the power of many moving together', and brings a strong commitment to collaboration and team building.

This is a value he experienced by his words ‘truly being raised by the village.’ This support system helped him grow into a person with strong human-centered skills that serve as a foundation in both business operations and team building.

Winton has 35 plus years of career experience in corporate, startups, and entrepreneurship.As the primary administrator for the organization’s software platforms, he is steering the organization to financial sustainability and long term growth. Winton holds a Liberal Arts degree from Hendrix College focused on Business and Economics, and a Master of Science in Telecommunications from Golden Gate University. He has augmented executive education from various intuitions, including study on Non-profit Organization management.

LESLIE MATTISON

Executive Director

Leslie believes leading with our humanity is central to making peace sustainable. Together we are healthier and stronger when through our shared values, we stand for each other and for something larger than ourselves. Peacemaking is...

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Peacemaking is about striving for connectedness in ourselves and others, and having empathy and understanding, that illuminates the uniqueness in each other.

A native of San Francisco’s melting pot, Leslie brings an eclectic background filled with people from diverse cultures and culinary traditions. She brings strength in entrepreneurship, specifically in business strategy, brand development, clothing design and manufacturing, and creates Art for Brands & Causes. She holds a BA degree in Business Management from Saint Mary’s College in Moraga CA, a degree in Apparel Design from Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, supplemental study in Graphic Design and Fine Art at Boise State, Design and Illustration at the Academy of Art in San Francisco, and a  Multimedia Certificate through San Francisco State University Multimedia Studies Program.

LUANNE STOVALL

Founder

As an artist, color theorist, and educator, Luanne wears many hats. All are connected by a deep-rooted support for the practice of treating others with generosity, respect, and humanity, and the power of creativity to inspire positive action.

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She was “called by the PIE” on the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday in January 1995, and baked the first Peace PIE that sparked our organically grown peace movement.

Luanne has an MFA in painting from Tufts University and has taught Living Color, Advanced Color, Color and Design Foundations for the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; University of Texas, Austin; and the Art Institute of Austin. Currently she is teaching and writing The New Color, a 21st Century Field Guide, a multidisciplinary way to study complex color codes in nature and culture. Her artwork is in numerous collections including the Blanton Museum of Art, Corpus Christi Museum of Art, The Revlon Collection, and Moakley Cancer Care Center in Boston. Luanne is delighted to collaborate with a dynamic creative team working to expand the network of  a new generation of peacemakers.

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