Governors, spouses discuss strategies for ending childhood hunger

newspaperAt a special joint session of the National Governors Association (NGA) Winter Meeting including governors and their spouses, Virginia First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe and NGA Vice Chair Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval co-moderated a session on ending childhood hunger.

Mrs. McAuliffe serves as chair of the NGA Spouses’ Leadership Committee and through her work on the committee, has chosen to shine a spotlight on childhood hunger and nutrition in partnership with national nonprofit Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign.

“One in five children in the United States struggles with hunger,” said Mrs. McAuliffe. “Food insecurity has major implications for the country’s economic future. Through federal and state initiatives and innovative tools such as public-private partnerships, we can improve the long-term health and educational outcomes for America’s youth as I have worked to do in Virginia.”

Presenting at the session were chef and author Hugh Acheson, who discussed the important role chefs and the business community play in raising awareness about childhood hunger. Rodney K. Taylor, food and nutrition services director for Fairfax County Public Schools in Virginia, shared the creative strategies he has employed to improve the quality of school meals and increase participation in nutrition assistance programs in Virginia and California. Finally, David Sanders, executive vice president of systems improvement for Casey Family Programs, addressed the links between food insecurity and child welfare.

Following the presentations, governors and spouses engaged in a roundtable discussion on the issue, focusing on state-led solutions and best practices governors can adopt to reduce food insecurity.

For more information on the weekend’s events, including video and a full agenda, visit

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