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Robert Johnson

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St. Mary's Food Bank
March 1, 2011

I worked there from mid-1986 to mid-1988 as a mission volunteer (Methodist). St. Mary's was then in the process of rapidly expanding programs. The emphasis on frugality was remarkable - every one was working for relatively little to support the cause, and even the director refused pay raises several times. We were successfully in getting all sorts of goods and services donated because the community respected us so well. The problems then were the inadequate physical facility and some unconstructive rivalries with the West Side Food Bank and the local St. Vincent de Paul society, although there was already a good relationship with the Food Bank in Flagstaff. I talked to several of the Board Members about the rivalries, and saw some immediate changes. The new facility was not purchased until after I left, but I did see it on a later visit, and it is everything one could want for a growing Food Bank in a growing state. I'm glad to see the establishment of the Alliance. No one who lives in the Alliance's service area (which is everything in Arizona except the counties around Tucson) should have any hesitations about supporting this charity.

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It has been too long since I left to recommend any changes.

MY ROLE:
Volunteer & Worked full time from mid 1986 to mid 1988.