Blue Ridge Area Food Bank announces new leadership

BRAFB_Logo_NEWThe Blue Ridge Area Food Bank announced on Monday the promotion of Michael McKee to chief executive officer as well as the appointment of three new officers on the Board of Directors.

Dr. John Downey, President of Blue Ridge Community College, Weyers Cave, has been elected Chair of Board; Lynn Mentzer, Associate General Counsel of the CFA Institute in Charlottesville, has been elected Vice Chair; and Lynn Powell, Executive Director of the Institute of Certified Professional Managers at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, has been elected Secretary.  Their Board terms begin July 1, 2013.

“The Food Bank has doubled its scope of operations in the last six years,” noted Susan Myers, outgoing Board Chair.  “The quality of leadership we have at both the staff and Board level will ensure that the Food Bank responds to a continuing high level of need in the community.”

Larry Zippin, who retired from his position as the Food Bank’s CEO earlier this month, said: “I am thrilled that Michael was chosen as my successor. I have every confidence that he will continue the Food Bank’s advancement from good to great.”

McKee joined the Food Bank in 2009 as Chief Planning and Philanthropy Officer to lead development and communications as well as strategic planning.  “This is a very exciting time to lead the Food Bank,” said McKee.  “The demands placed on our organization are unprecedented.  Underemployment and low wages are forcing near record numbers of people to seek help, while donations of food from traditional sources are declining.”

McKee’s experience in the not-for-profit sector spans two decades.   Before joining the Food Bank, McKee served as executive director of the Virginia Institute of Autism, a private special education day school in Charlottesville, VA, for five years. Prior to that, he was the senior director of development for the University of Virginia Health System for nine years. He began working in the not-for-profit sector in 1986 as a consultant in public relations and development.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Southern California, and now resides with his wife and two children in Charlottesville, Virginia.


About the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank

Founded in 1981, the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank is the largest organization alleviating hunger in western and central Virginia. Headquartered in Verona, VA, the Food Bank serves 25 counties and nine cities through distribution centers in Charlottesville, Lynchburg, Winchester and Verona. The Blue Ridge Area Food Bank distributes more than 20 million pounds of food annually to 115,000 people each month through a network of 250 community partners – food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, schools, churches and other non-profit groups. The Food Bank is a member of Feeding America, a national food bank association that supports 202 food banks across the United States. For more information, visit

augusta free press news
augusta free press news