President and chief executive officer
Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin
Bonnie Bellehumeur’s name is virtually synonymous with Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin. For 23 years, Bellehumeur has led the organization and its mission to feed Wisconsin’s hungry.
In 1991, when Bellehumeur started, the organization was distributing approximately 8.5 million pounds of food per year and raising $346,000 annually. Last year, it distributed 22.5 million pounds of food and raised more than $5 million.
Her innovative and creative approach to leading a nonprofit organization in an ever-changing climate has provided the opportunity for the organization to not only be successful, but to flourish under her leadership.
“Bonnie is a true professional, able to effectively champion the nonprofit cause while overseeing a complex operation model,” said Ted Balistreri, co-owner of Sendik’s Food Markets and chairman of Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin’s board of directors. “She has done so with great integrity and success and is a true pioneer among her peers in the not-for-profit segment.”
Bellehumeur has changed the way that Feeding America approaches fundraising, and is in the process of transitioning the organization from direct mail to electronic and other, more cost-effective means of marketing and fundraising.
She’s also changing the approach the organization takes in the sourcing of food for the people it serves. For many years, Feeding America relied on food manufacturers. Seeing that approach may not be a viable source of food in the future, Bellehumeur and her staff implemented a new Fresh Rescue model that tapped into retail outlets in 36 counties that the organization serves. The program is now the primary source of food for the organization.
Bellehumeur plans to retire at the end of 2014, but the mission of Feeding America will continue.
“Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin has a mission-driven group of employees, an amazing and consistent team of managers… and a remarkable board of directors. That’s a winning combination,” she said.