Happy to Meet You

Get To Know The Engine 2 Team

Rip Esselstyn

Engine 2 Founder Rip Esselstyn was born in upstate New York, raised in Cleveland, Ohio, and educated at the University of Texas at Austin, where he was a three-time All-American swimmer. After graduation, Rip spent a decade as one of the premier triathletes in the world. He then joined the Austin Fire Department where he introduced his passion for a whole-food, plant-based diet to Austin’s Engine 2 Firehouse in order to rescue a firefighting brother’s health. To document his success he wrote the national bestselling book, The Engine 2 Diet, which shows the irrefutable connection between a plant-based diet and good health.

Rip left his job as a firefighter in 2009 to team up with Whole Foods Market as one of their Healthy Eating Partners to raise awareness for Whole Foods employees, customers and communities about the benefits of eating a plant-strong diet. As the founder of Engine 2, Rip develops and implements a range of programs and events geared toward education, inspiring and nurturing plant-strong living for individuals, families and organizations across the globe.

He has appeared on hundreds of radio and national television shows, including the Today Show, CBS Sunday Morning, Good Morning America and The Dr. Oz Show. Rip is a New York Times Bestselling Author who has published four books. His most recent book is The Engine 2 Seven-Day Rescue Diet.

Rip lives in Austin, Texas with his wife Jill, and their three beautiful children, Kole, Sophie and Hope.

Laurie Kortowich

Laurie serves as director of all Engine 2 programs including week-long immersions, Plant-Stock, and the Seven-Day Rescue. She is also responsible for cultivating corporate partnerships and exploring new business development. Born into a dairy-farming family in Western New York, Laurie managed events for more than 17 years, then spent seven years as a high-energy lifestyle director for Del Webb. She founded Plant-Based CLE, a support group in Northeast Ohio dedicated to helping people find the joy in plant-based living. She lives in Cleveland with her husband, Todd, their three active kids and one snoring dog. Her favorite vegetable is broccoli!


Ami Ann Mackey

Ami is the Curator of Creative Content and Food Coach at Engine 2. Ami and her husband have both been plant-strong since 2011. When she is not creating new recipes or photographing her creations, she can be found exploring in the wilds of the Silicon Valley with her rescued pit bull.  She volunteers her time with at-risk youth and specializes in helping teens and athletes go plant-strong. She has earned certificates from eCornell in Plant-Based Nutrition & Fitness Nutrition from NASM. You can find Ami in our Engine 2 Seven-Day Rescue Challenge Facebook Group everyday.


Pam Kropf 

Pam is an Engine 2 Contributor, sharing her experience as a plant-strong parent, ultra runner and food coach with our readers. Known as Trailmomma on social media, Pam is the mother of two feisty active kiddos. She has been plant-based since she was 16 years old. Born in New Jersey, now a resident of Northern California, she loves to travel. Pam has earned a certificate from eCornell in Plant-Based Nutrition and is a graduate of Rouxbe’s Plant-Based Cooking Program. She is a certified Food For Life Coach and a Paralegal. You can find Pam in the Engine 2 Plant-Strong Community Group on Facebook.