Academy Foundation Awards First Diversity and Inclusion Fellowship to Purdue Faculty Member

March 31, 2021 

CHICAGO – The Boards of Directors of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and its Foundation are pleased to announce the Foundation has awarded its first Diversity and Inclusion Fellowship to registered dietitian nutritionist Marie AK Allsopp, a clinical assistant professor in nutrition science at Purdue University. Allsopp begins the two-year Fellowship in June.

The Foundation, with the leadership, direction and support of the Academy, designed the Fellowship to build on the work of the Academy Board of Directors' Diversity and Inclusion Committee to identify and find solutions to barriers that face students, registered dietitian nutritionists and nutrition and dietetics technicians, registered of diverse backgrounds and cultures.

"I am grateful and thrilled for this opportunity to give back to a profession that has given so much to me." Allsopp said. "I will endeavor to make sure that underrepresented minorities will not only have a seat at the table but will feel welcome at the table."

Allsopp has taught at Purdue since 2019 and has experience in diversity and inclusion programming. Previously, she had more than a decade of experience as an RDN in clinical and community dietetics and customer service. She earned two master's degrees from the University of Tennessee and a doctorate from the University at Albany - State University of New York. She is president of the Western Indiana Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and a member of the Academy's Nutrition and Dietetics Educators and Preceptors group; the National Organization of Blacks in Dietetics and Nutrition member interest group; and the Dietitians in Business and Communications dietetic practice group.

"Our Foundation is a catalyst for individuals and organizations to come together and collaborate to solve the greatest food and nutrition challenges now and in the future." said registered dietitian nutritionist Margaret Garner, the Foundation's 2020-2021 chair. "Inclusivity, diversity, equity and accessibility are high priorities for the Academy, our Foundation and our profession. Marie brings a breadth and depth of knowledge and experience and is highly qualified to address these issues. We are proud to add her to a growing roster of distinguished and dynamic Foundation Fellows."

Allsopp will lead the Foundation's Prioritizing Diversity and Inclusion in Nutrition and Dietetics: Overcoming Obstacles to RDN Recruitment, Education and Advancement program. She will work to:

  • Identify barriers that students of diverse backgrounds and cultures face in becoming RDNs and NDTRs
  • Determine obstacles for RDNs and NDTRs of diverse backgrounds and cultures in advancing in the profession
  • Create a framework with potential solutions to support students, RDNs and NDTRs of diverse backgrounds and cultures
  • Enhance pre-professional and continuing education for students and RDNs and NDTR's in the areas of cultural competency and cultural humility.

The Diversity and Inclusion Fellowship was made possible by a donation from the Academy's Nutrition and Dietetics Educators and Preceptors and a gift from registered dietitian nutritionist Diane Heller, a longtime Academy and Foundation leader who is a member of the Academy's Board of Directors.


Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

Representing more than 100,000 credentialed nutrition and dietetics practitioners, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is the world's largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. The Academy is committed to improving the nation's health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education and advocacy. Visit the Academy at

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation 

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation is a 501(c)3 charity dedicated exclusively to supporting nutrition and dietetics professionals by empowering them to help consumers live healthier lifestyles. It makes an impact with Academy members and throughout the profession with its scholarships, awards, research grants, fellowships, public education programs and disaster relief efforts. Through philanthropy, the Foundation empowers current and future food and nutrition practitioners to optimize global health. Visit the Foundation at