Fitzgerald named executive vice president at Feeding America

Katie Fitzgerald,CEO, Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY — Katie Fitzgerald has been named executive vice president and chief operating officer at Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization announced today. She will start Jan. 13, 2020, and be based in the organization’s Chicago office.

Fitzgerald will oversee the organization’s supply chain, equity initiatives, programs, network relations and research departments and will lead the efforts to advance Feeding America’s strategic plan.

“Katie’s deep nonprofit management experience spans the foundation, food bank and service agency realms. Her research and community-wide strategic planning experience serve as a foundation for her ability to leverage data and insights in the development of long-term vision and strategy,” said Claire Babineaux-Fontenot, CEO of Feeding America. “Katie’s talent, passion and collaborative track record for executing strategies to improve outcomes for vulnerable people will be of service to the more than 40 million people fed by the Feeding America network each year.”

Fitzgerald comes to Feeding America from the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, where she has served as CEO for the past three years. Prior to joining the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, she served as the president and CEO of Make-a-Wish Oklahoma. She also served as executive director at the Center for Children and Families in Norman, where she led the largest expansion in operations in the agency’s history. 

Earlier in her career, Fitzgerald served as director for the Women’s Leadership Initiative at the University of Oklahoma’s Carl Albert Center and led the Oklahoma Afterschool Network at the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy.

Before moving to Oklahoma, Fitzgerald served as program director with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and held several leadership positions with United Way of Greater Battle Creek in Michigan. She began her career as an AmeriCorps volunteer and earned her bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University and a master’s degree in social work from the University of Michigan.

“The Feeding America network is one of the largest and most powerful forces for good in our nation,” said Fitzgerald. “Every day, the 200 food banks, along with hundreds of thousands of partners, volunteers and supporters, help the people we serve access healthy food and pathways to greater economic security for themselves and their families. I am deeply grateful to have had the opportunity to serve the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma – an organization that represents the very best in service, stewardship and commitment to mission. The opportunity to continue to serve our network in this new role is both humbling and exciting as we work, together, to end hunger in America.”

Fitzgerald will remain with the Regional Food Bank through early January 2020. The organization will begin a national search for its next CEO immediately and will appoint an interim CEO to support the organization when Fitzgerald leaves and until a new CEO is hired.

“We are extremely grateful for Katie’s leadership these past three years,” said Ben Williams, chair of the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma’s Board of Directors. “Under her leadership, we have focused and strengthened our strategies for fighting hunger, and she has been instrumental in ensuring our organization and leadership team is well positioned to drive our mission forward. We are delighted and proud that she is staying within our network to serve our movement in this important national role, and we look forward to an even deeper connection to Feeding America. We feel confident that the work Katie and her team have done over the past few years has positioned us exceedingly well to attract a top-tier candidate to continue our work moving forward.”

Eric Swanson is the City Hall and general assignment reporter for The Ada News. He spent 15 years working at the Dodge City Daily Globe in Dodge City, Kansas, before joining The Ada News’ staff in 2012.

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