Executive Director

Executive Director

California Association of Food Banks

Oakland, CA   |   October 1, 2019

About The California Association of Food Banks

Food is a fundamental right. Yet, over 4 million Californians face hunger. The California Association of Food Banks (CAFB) works to ensure every person has access to adequate nutritious food and no Californian goes hungry.

CAFB works with a broad array of partners including farmers and growers, the State Legislature and Administration, policy advocates, funders and many others to provide services to its 41-member food banks that work to feed people in their communities.

CAFB is an advocate and convener in California and is also heavily involved in federal nutrition policy. CAFB works as a resource for communities, leaders, and individuals fighting hunger. CAFB accomplishes this important work through a variety of programs and initiatives:

CalFresh Outreach – CAFB partners with community organizations that connect people with nutrition programs. The CalFresh Outreach program supports 50+ community partners in an effort to enroll and keep enrolled eligible Californians in CalFresh (formerly called food stamps; now SNAP at the federal level).

Changemakers – CAFB works with policy makers and administrators in local, state, and federal government to protect and enact policies that mitigate hunger and propel California toward food security. Each year CAFB’s Public Policy program works on a dozen statewide budget and legislative priorities and provides state leadership on several critical federal policies that enhance the food access safety net.

Farm to Family Program – The CAFB team collaborates with farmers, packers, and distributors to ensure high quality produce and protein items are accessed and distributed to member food banks. Each year the Farm to Family Program delivers 160M+ pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables and 8M+ pounds of protein to food banks.

Member Services – Each year, the Membership Services program supports their 41-member food banks by establishing funding opportunities, facilitating collaborations, and publishing best practices.

With a staff of 27, CAFB manages over $26M of funding related to programs and contracts and has a $4.6M annual operating budget. CAFB is headquartered in downtown Oakland.

For more information, please visit CAFB’s website here.

The Opportunity

The California Association of Food Banks (CAFB) seeks an experienced Executive Director to lead the organization as it steps into a new chapter with its member food banks.

Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Executive Director will represent CAFB to its membership, more broadly throughout California and will be the spokesperson for California food banking nationally. They will have responsibility for CAFB’s programs, fundraising, events, advocacy efforts, and staff.

The Executive Director will possess strong management and leadership skills both internally and externally. They will be a trusting and approachable leader and support a positive internal culture. The Executive Director’s leadership is key in driving the impact of the organization’s programs and policies.

The Executive Director will be a fierce advocate for CAFB to continue to strengthen its position as a leader and convener in the anti-hunger space and will deepen relationships across its diverse communities. The Executive Director will show flexibility to advance the mission while meeting members’ needs and creating an environment conducive to learning and collaboration. The Executive Director will partner with the Board, staff, and members to cement CAFB’s role in the sector and build a plan to achieve increased impact and action.

Key metrics for success in this role includes:

  • Collaborating with the Board members to ensure the organization is impactful and successful;
  • Leading and empowering the staff by leveraging a collaborative culture;
  • Overseeing CAFB’s finances and operations; monitoring the budget, expenditures;
  • Developing and maintaining strong relationships with partners and stakeholders;
  • Effectively partnering and supporting CAFB’s senior leaders on the implementation of key program areas;
  • Communicating effectively with the Board and other constituents and exhibiting a high level of diplomacy;
  • Staying abreast of policy issues in the fields of poverty and food banking, bringing recommendations to the Board for strategic planning, and policy-setting discussions; and
  • Developing and deepening relationships with current and future funders and representing CAFB in the broader nonprofit and policy arenas.
Candidate Profile

The ideal candidate will have the following professional and personal qualities, skills, and characteristics:

A Passion for the Mission

The Executive Director will be a champion of, and personally invested in, strengthening the food bank network, ending hunger, and addressing the underlying contributors of poverty. They will exhibit a wide-ranging curiosity and interest in the needs of CAFB’s diverse members. The Executive Director will have the skill and enthusiasm to remain at the forefront of the sector and to develop new and unique opportunities to serve the mission. Although direct experience in food banking is not required, they will have a nuanced understanding of how member organizations are leveraged to achieve broader goals in the sector. The Executive Director will have a track record of advancing social service and a commitment to the values embedded within CAFB’s internal organization, its programs, and in its work with the broader community.

A Strong Organizational Leader

The Executive Director will have a track record of success in organizational management. They will have strong program experience to continually innovate, improve, and increase the impact of CAFB’s offerings and outcomes. The Executive Director will have significant experience in organizational operations, finance, board governance and management, and be a strong partner to the staff. They will be an experienced manager who engenders trust in the staff through a collaborative management style, helps them achieve their potential, and holds them accountable. The Executive Director will maintain a level of appropriate transparency and consult the staff as partners, leveraging cross-departmental strengths across the organization.

A Relationship Builder

The Executive Director will be skilled at building effective relationships across a range of stakeholders. With a high level of emotional intelligence, they will be able to build trust to develop productive and fulfilling relationships with the Board, staff, members, and other partners. With excellent written and oral communication skills, the Executive Director will be a strong facilitator, communicator, and collaborator who is skilled at listening to, and learning from, constituents. They will be skilled at building learning communities and networks and developing a powerful sense of shared purpose in others. The Executive Director will possess a strong sense of confidence and will have a consultative and facilitative style.

An Ambassador for CAFB

Seen as a thought leader in the sector, the Executive Director will be a strong partner to the organization’s members and other collaborators. They will develop and implement a shared vision with diverse stakeholders and will be comfortable representing the organization publicly. The Executive Director will be a strong advocate for the members, the Board, and the staff. They will be credible when representing the organization in statewide and national policy arenas and will be effective at conveying CAFB’s mission. They will be a leader of unquestioned integrity, ethics and values; someone who can be trusted without reservation.


Koya Leadership Partners, the national executive search firm that works exclusively with mission-driven clients, has been retained for this search. Alexandra Corvin and Ally Johnson are leading the engagement.

To make recommendations, or to express your interest in this role, please email Koya directly at CAFB@KoyaPartners.com. All inquiries and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.