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  • Writer's pictureRosa Hernandez

Board Spotlight: Chris Wodarcyk

“The most important thing to understand is that if people are thinking about where their

next meal is coming from, then they’re not thinking about anything else.” - Chris Wodarcyk

profile picture of Chris Wodarcyk
Chris Wodarcyk

Chris Wodarcyk joined the Waste Not board almost five years ago. Originally the Board Chair of United Food Bank, he joined Waste Not during the 2019 merger of the two organizations. He has been the Board President of Waste Not since July 2023. 

Chris and I met up outside of the Arizona Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired to help out with Waste Not’s regularly scheduled food delivery. 

Chris can often be found at Waste Not events - supporting the team and mission of our food rescue organization. When suggested that we do this interview at an agency - Chris didn’t hesitate (even though being photographed isn’t his thing). 

The Arizona Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired (ACBVI) has been a part of the Valley for 77 years. They provide services like support groups, teaching living skills, vocational training, recreational opportunities, and more to their clients. But before any of this can happen - the clients need to be fed well.

Chris Wodarcyk and ACBVI staff helping with food delivery

As we waited for the delivery, Chris shared a bit more why Waste Not’s mission resonates with him. Above all - it’s the duality of the mission.

 “We rescue food every day,” says Chris. “Food, that if we were not here would - without a doubt - be going to the landfill.”

Waste Not’s mission is to create sustainable food systems through innovative partnerships that eliminate food waste and hunger. The uniqueness that resonates with Chris is that we do this with one purpose in mind: to help people and the planet flourish.

Having been a part of Arizona for 15 years, he doesn’t know any other organization that has this dual focus like we do.

Waste Not truck in front of ACBVI

Once our truck showed up with our old friend Ted in the driver’s seat, Chris jumped right in along with the staff from ACBVI.

He took full and heavy banana boxes of food - avocados, vegetables, milk, and loaded them high onto hand carts. He talked with staff as he went along - getting to know their stories. He was impressed with the amount of talent at ACBVI, including their executive chef - Cynthia DiNovo, who has 23 years of experience.

Chris Wodarcyk and Cynthia DiNovo load food onto a handcart

As the delivery finished and we headed back to our cars, I asked Chris why he stayed on the Waste Not board and why he chose to step in as Board President. Here’s what he had to say:

“Everybody is committed. And passionate. I’m amazed at the staff - Hillary Bryant, Rosa Hernandez, Karina Gutierrez, and the drivers. I show up to events (like this one) because of their passion. It rubs off on me and keeps me energized at what we’re trying to do here.”

To support our mission in feeding people like the clients at ACBVI, donate now to help people and the planet flourish.

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