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Sylvia Blain Named Next CEO of Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance

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The Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance on Monday announced that Sylvia Blain will be the next CEO of the statewide nonprofit.

Blain is the executive director of Potluck Food Rescue, an organization that takes food that would otherwise be thrown away and distributes it, free of charge, to a network of nonprofit community food programs that use it to feed hungry people. She has held that role for six years.

Blain assumes her new role at the Hunger Relief Alliance on April 1. She follows Kathy Webb, who is retiring at the end of March after more than 10 years leading the organization. Webb plans to work with the nonprofit as a consultant on a variety of issues.

Camille Wrinkle, president of the Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance board of directors, said in a statement that Blain’s experience in food insecurity, her strategic planning and capacity expansion experience, and her proven track record as an executive director were all factors in her selection.

“Blain’s experience in hunger relief work and advocacy for policy changes to increase access will serve the Alliance well as we work to alleviate food insecurity across Arkansas,” Wrinkle said.

Blain joins the Hunger Relief Alliance as the Farm Bill, including commodity programs, are up for renewal and a new federal food assistance program launches in the state. Arkansas leaders announced last week that the state had opted in to the Summer Electronic Benefit Transfer, or Summer EBT, program, which provides food assistance for children during summer break.

The Hunger Relief Alliance is the only statewide hunger organization in Arkansas. It works with the state’s six Feeding America food banks, hundreds of local hunger relief agencies, businesses, and elected officials to secure food for the charitable food network, increase access through the No Kid Hungry campaign and SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), advocate at the state and federal level, and provide nutrition education.

“Being able to take what I’ve learned, work with the amazing Alliance team and Board, and to have the opportunity to increase food security across the entire state is exciting,” Blain said. I’ve worked with the Alliance for many years and have long admired their work.”

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