Mark Ford has joined Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization, as Director of Native/Tribal Partnerships. Ford started on June 21 and is currently based in Phoenix, Arizona.
As Director of Native/Tribal Partnerships, Ford will deepen the organization’s engagement with and understanding of native and tribal communities facing food insecurity.
“Mark’s remarkable experience in cultivating relationships and building sustainable programs with native and tribal populations is integral to Feeding America’s work toward advancing and deepening our community partnerships,” said Ami McReynolds, Chief Equity and Programs Officer at Feeding America. “This is the first time as an organization that we’ve called upon someone with Mark’s knowledge and understanding to focus on our relationships with native and tribal partners. His leadership will ensure the growth of equitable access to nutritious food for all, in partnership with the communities we serve.”
Prior to joining Feeding America, Ford served as the Director of Community Partnerships and Tribal Relations at Partnership With Native Americans (PWNA), a nonprofit committed to championing a brighter future for Native Americans living on remote, isolated, and impoverished reservations. Ford initiated PWNA’s “Long-Term Solutions” sustainable programs for tribal communities and cultivated partner relationships with corporations, foundations, non-profit organizations, tribes, and philanthropists to support the organization’s work. He was also previously appointed the Executive Director of the Governor’s Office of Indian Affairs in Louisiana, assisting the Louisiana tribes after Hurricanes Gustav and Ike in their recovery efforts.
“I have seen the good that Feeding America can do when food banks partner with communities they serve, and I’m thrilled to continue my work elevating the voices, experiences, and expertise of Native Americans,” said Ford. “Feeding America’s commitment to supporting and partnering with tribes –wherever we can – is an important step toward advancing equity and providing communities with greater access to culturally meaningful food. I look forward to establishing partnerships that will guide Feeding America as we address food insecurity in tribal communities.”
Ford is Chiricahua Apache and Tewa/Tiwa (Pueblo). He served as a Roman Catholic priest for 16 years. He was assigned and served as a pastor on the Navajo and Hopi Reservations in Arizona, as well as Little Rock, Arkansas, and Dallas, Texas. He was later assigned to two churches in New Orleans, Louisiana, where he co-founded a ministry for children with disabilities and their families. Ford is certified in Partnership Brokering through the International Partnership Brokering Association.
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About Feeding America
Feeding America® is the largest hunger-relief organization in the United States. Through a network of more than 200 food banks, 21 statewide food bank associations, and over 60,000 partner agencies, food pantries and meal programs, we helped provide 6.6 billion meals to tens of millions of people in need last year. Feeding America also supports programs that prevent food waste and improve food security among the people we serve; brings attention to the social and systemic barriers that contribute to food insecurity in our nation; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Visit www.feedingamerica.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.