After a remarkable 38-year career at the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York, Executive Director Mark Quandt is retiring.
Mark began his career in 1983 as a Warehouse Manager when the Food Bank was serving just 60 agencies in 8 counties distributing approximately 400,000 pounds of food. Quandt was promoted to Executive Director in 1984 and today, through his leadership, the Regional Food Bank serves nearly 1,000 agencies in 23 counties distributing over 55 million pounds of food annually.
Under Mark’s leadership, many innovative programs were developed to expand the reach of the Food Bank to underserved communities with specific emphasis on providing services to children and seniors. He used creative approaches to connect available food sources to the Food Bank communities including operating a farm to provide fresh produce, building relationships with food manufacturers and wholesalers, and organizing hundreds of retail grocery stores to donate food that would otherwise go to waste. He has worked tirelessly to broaden partnerships, increase awareness and continually communicate the need to alleviate hunger in our communities, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mark not only succeeded in serving individual and community needs, but he has been instrumental in developing the complex infrastructure and sophisticated management required to operate the large food bank. He has built a highly-trained and professional team of staff and volunteers that carry out their duties with tremendous skill and an overwhelming caring attitude.
When asked about his thoughts on retiring from the Food Bank Mark Quandt said, “It has been an honor to work alongside professionals such as the board, staff, volunteers, agencies, donors and community leaders in the 23-county region, who are all truly dedicated to our mission of alleviating hunger and reducing food waste. I will always look back with affection and pride on what the Regional Food Bank has accomplished. It has been a wonderful journey. The Food Bank will always have a place in my heart and I will continue to support the organization in any way I can. Meanwhile, I will leave it in the very capable hands of the leadership team with confidence the great work will continue.”
A search committee has been formed to hire a new leader for the organization. Quandt will continue in his current role until his successor is identified and transitioned.