With 30 years in the food industry, Cheryl Schondek, Executive Vice President of Operations at GBFB, knows a thing or two about logistics. But she credits her success today to one specific skill: asking the right people for help.
As chair of GBFB’s Food Industry Committee, Cheryl is at the heart of a network of problem-solvers who are dedicated to ending hunger here. Members she has recruited to the committee include owners of local businesses like Olivia’s Organics in Chelsea, as well as representatives from national chains like Walmart.
“What do these people have in common? They’re all in the food business. These are the people who put the food in the food bank. Whether they donate money, food, time or leadership, it’s their expertise that’s helping us get more healthy meals out to those in need.”
Cheryl elaborates: “For example, we use our grocery store partners’ buying power to procure Thanksgiving turkeys at a better cost. When beans were impossible to find early in the pandemic, they put me directly in touch with their bean vendors.”
It’s all about leveraging connections, Cheryl explains. The wonderful part is, every single committee member is thrilled to contribute—and if they can’t solve the immediate problem, they know someone who can.
In her nine years with GBFB, Cheryl has seen the amount of food distributed go from 40 million pounds to more than 100 million. That’s thanks to her own ingenuity, her team of retailers, wholesalers, manufacturers and transportation experts, and committed friends like you.
Food Industry Committee
Caitlin Roche, Roche Bros
Mark DeMichaelis, Olivia’s Organics/State Garden
Bill Devin, Price Rite
Chris Flynn, Massachusetts Foods Association
Teresa Edington, Shaw’s/Star Market
Kevin Griffin, Semiotic Marketing
Lori Hall, B.J.’s Wholesale Club
Mark Hintlian, The Leavitt Corporation
Chris Reisner, Kayem Foods
Ann Trucchi, Trucchi’s Supermarkets
Janine Dempsey, Walmart
Robert Dodge, Stop and Shop Companies
Marc DiPersio, A.J. Letizio Sales and Marketing
Kevin Barry, Big Y Supermarkets
Joe Voci, Tourtellot Company
Bob Goodwin, Dietz & Watson
David Meyer, Independent Broker
Matt O’Hare, Johnson O’Hare Company
Andrew Cohen, Amazon
Dan O’Neill, Director of Purchasing, GBFB
Cheryl Schondek, Executive Vice President, GBFB