Board Candidate Statements

September 19th 2018

Provender holds elections for our Board of Directors yearly and it’s that time of year.  A designated person from each member organization will be receiving an electronic ballot soon.    The Nominating Committee has diligently and carefully screened these candidates.  This is the candidates’ opportunity to speak to you about their interest in serving on the board.  These statements will also appear on the ballot.

Mark DiMaggio – Red Duck Foods

Please share a little bit about yourself and why you want to serve on the Provender Board.

 Hello! My name is Mark DiMaggio and am originally from the great state of New Jersey. My wife and I met while working for Equal Exchange and have a 4-year old pup. I am currently working for Red Duck Foods, an organic B-corp certified condiment company. I want to serve on the Provender board because I want to be more involved in our community especially one that centers around the food industry!

What skills do you bring to the Provender board that will make you an excellent board member? 

The skills that I am able to bring to the Provender board are attention to detail, fresh ideas, and asking timely relevant questions that result in a better understanding of the topic at hand.

What interests you most about the work that the Provender board does? 

I am most interested in connecting people with food they eat. Before working in the food industry, I didn’t think about how food was grown, transported, or processed. I am inspired by the network and scope that Provender has to help educate and motivate individuals about something that can be so easily taken for granted and misunderstood.

Please share a favorite Provender experience and how it has affected you. 

To this point, I have not had many experiences with Provender but I am looking forward to the upcoming conference and interacting with the members of Provender.

What are your passions in life and how do they align with the mission of Provender? 

My passions in life are family, food, and community. Food is at the center of family and community, so it plays a vital role in conversation, social justice, and quality of life. I believe Provender has been around as long as it has because the food industry is so important to our community and families.

Troy Eustice – Sundance Natural Foods

Please share a little bit about yourself and why you want to serve on the Provender Board.

Hi! My name is Troy Eustice and I am the Grocery Manager at Sundance Natural Foods in Eugene, Oregon. I have been a part of the Natural Foods movement since 1997. In continued service to the board, I hope to combine my experience, passion, and ethics to better our community and the greater Natural Foods movement.

What skills do you bring to the Provender board that will make you an excellent board member?

I have now served my first term on the board and have begun to feel like I am making a positive contribution to the board of directors and to the organization as a whole. My natural foods background combined with my serious passion for Provender make me highly motivated to keep Provender all that it is and to make it better, more welcoming, and more rewarding.

What interests you most about the work that the Provender board does?

Provender, unlike any other group, is dedicated to building relationships through sharing and helping one another. I have long concerned myself with how to further those goals, how to encourage the growth of Provender while sticking to the integrity of its mission. Provender connects like-minded organizations and individuals in a deeply human way, unlike other organizations which prioritize politics or profits.

Please share a favorite Provender experience and how it has affected you.

At the end of my first conference in 2011, early on Saturday morning, my only thought was, “I can’t wait until next year…” Each year the annual conference provides members a deeply meaningful experience, if one comes open to genuine intention, learning, and openness to making new friends.

What are your passions in life and how do they align with the mission of Provender?

My passions: my family; my community (which includes you); clean, healthy, fresh, organic and local food. And I really like fixing old bicycles. I am always working to connect the successes of the past with the possibilities of the future.

Meg Kennedy – Individual Member

Please share a little bit about yourself and why you want to serve on the Provender Board.

I have had the privileged of serving the membership of the Provender alliance as a board member for 5 years and would like to continue this service for one more term. I have been involved with the alliance for over 15 years and love to be a part of this community in this way. The board is currently deep into strategic planning for this organization, and I would love to continue this work and build on the past few years to support this organization and all our members to survive and thrive in this quickly changing industry. 

What skills do you bring to the Provender board that will make you an excellent board member?

Mainly, I have many years of experience on boards in the natural products industry, and bring a unique perspective to every one of them. I look for integrity and social justice issues in every group I am involved with, and feel I have been a good influence on this board in helping us create the organizations’ first inclusivity statement, so we can get closer to having all of the voices in this industry at our table and be stronger than ever. Also, I have been in the natural products industry for over 25 years and have forged relationships with so many organizations and people in the industry. I’ve heard its not what you know, it’s who you know.

What interests you most about the work that the Provender board does?

Every year I have been involved, I have heard over and over that this organization is like no other in the depth and strength of our connections. We are one of the few grass roots organizations left in our industry that supports and links so many old school and new school people and organizations together. I believe we have the membership and connections to continue to be a strong force in our industry, holding its integrity up for years to come.

Please share a favorite Provender experience and how it has affected you.

A few years ago at the conference during the awards ceremony, one of my co board members was on stage announcing the next award recipient. This board member was a person who really did not like speaking in public or in front of a crowd so I was thinking whoever was getting this award must be pretty darn special. I was truly surprised when it was my name she called as the award recipient and I even teared up a bit. It was an honor to win the ‘Rebel With a Cause’ award, but more so it reminded me that the people in this organization will go out of their way and be uncomfortable if necessary for the good of the supporting and uplifting each other. I believe this is the Provender way.

What are your passions in life and how do they align with the mission of Provender?

My passions in life that align with Provender’s mission are my dedication to food justice principles. Integrity, access for all, food sovereignty and community. Also, I am very committed to nurture and be nurtured, inspire and be inspired and educate and be educated by this incredible community.