In September of 2016, I was honored to be named the new CEO of Loaves & Fishes Community Services. As I reflect on the past year, I’m happy to report that we have been fortunate to have made some very exciting advancements to better serve our community to help end hunger and transform lives.

In 2016, we executed the merger with Naperville CARES. Since that time, we have fully integrated people and programs, and have made some important strides to better serve people in our community. Our clients now have more awareness of the combined programs we have available and are able to come to one location to access more comprehensive resources and get the help they desperately need.

Regarding our food operations, we distributed more food this past year than ever before – 3.85 million pounds. We are also focused on the quality of food and offer more healthy, nutritious choices than ever before through our Smart Check program. We are providing more milk and eggs, and adding service to at-risk populations such as children and seniors. We are recovering significantly more food from our grocery partners, and greatly appreciate the support we received from our generous community to help us acquire a new refrigerated truck to transport such additional food.

We have a great team in place and their hard work and dedication to execute on all of the aspirations of our Strategic Plan is producing excellent results.

Very importantly, over the past year, I have been able to spend a lot more time with so many incredible people both in our community and organization. This support, as demonstrated by our volunteers, donors, partners and many others, is absolutely amazing. This has been a true honor for me.