Press release from Food for People:
There are big transitions happening at Food for People with the completion of the new building and the upcoming retirement of longtime Executive Director Anne Holcomb and the hiring of Carly Robbins as the new ED!
Anne’s role as the Executive Director began in April of 2001 after moving from Maine to Humboldt to be closer to her adult children and expanding brood of grandchildren. She quickly decided to focus on creating the kind of community she wanted her grandkids to grow up in; one that ensures everyone has the food they need to grow, learn, and work with dignity.
That led to a 22-year career at Food for People and has included lots of listening and learning to help guide the organization’s efforts to develop creative programs and partnerships that best meet the needs of our diverse community. These have included programs like the Backpacks for Kids weekend hunger relief program; mobile pantry services that reach the far corners of our rural county; free produce markets that help people incorporate foods that support good health; an expanded network of food pantries for a more localized response; increased CalFresh outreach to provide households broader access to additional resources for food; and the ability to respond to natural disasters as quickly as possible.
“I would like to thank the staff and volunteers and the hundreds of partners both locally and statewide who have shared their resources, compassion and grace over the years in support of our friends and neighbors” says Holcomb. “I have found such incredible inspiration from meeting so many people who have shared their stories of how Food for People helped them at a critical time, and how happy they are to be in a position to ‘pay it forward’ as volunteers and donors. This is the spirit that will keep Food for People strong and resilient into the future.”
After a comprehensive search by the Board of Directors, Carly Robbins has been hired to serve as the next Executive Director of the Food Bank. Carly is not a stranger to the organization (nor the community, graduating from Eureka High!), serving as the Development Director for the past eight years. She has managed the fundraising and marketing efforts, while also spearheading the Capital Campaign for the new warehouse building that has grown way beyond the initial goals.
“As I quickly learned, when I started eight years ago, even among other food banks, Food for People is unique, and I would say, exceptional. Many food banks function solely on a bulk level – collecting, inventorying, and storing food to be distributed to partner agencies. The direct distribution of food is typically done by others, but Food for People does it all. We do the typical food banking, providing food to our network of hard-working food pantries and partners, and we also provide direct service with our staff offering one-on-one connections with people, listening to their stories and offering a warm smile with dignity and respect.”
Over the last several years the economic challenges caused by the pandemic, supply chain issues, and rising inflation have caused record numbers of people to seek Food for People’s services. The organization has grown, expanded, and weathered these unique challenges. And the food bank is now entering another stage as they work to address this continuing rise in food insecurity while also settling into a brand-new facility. Please stop by Food for People’s new location at 307 W 14th Street on Sunday, June 25th between 1 PM to 5 PM as they open their doors for public tours of the new warehouse facility.