Valerie Brown Traoré, CEO
As the CEO of Food Bank of South Jersey, Inc, Val has overall responsibility for the strategic, programmatic, financial, and management operations of the $11M nonprofit organization based in New Jersey. She leads the communication of the vision and program objectives to internal and external constituencies and works collaboratively with the Board of Trustees in formulating policies, developing strategies, raising funds, and achieving performance. Since her arrival in 2006, Val has tripled the organization's fundraising base, tripled its offering of programs and other services, raised its efficiency rating to the highest level of 4 stars (Charity Navigator) and has uniquely position the organization for its next stage of growth.
Val's background in the nonprofit sector is extensive. She has more than 20 years nonprofit leadership experience working at hunger-relief organizations in Baltimore, Chicago and New York. One of them was for Feeding America: The Nation's Food Bank Network based in Chicago, IL. In her role there, Val traveled extensively throughout the country advising food banks and food rescue organizations in areas of strategic development, organizational management, board development, financial management and facilities management. She holds a B.S. in Management from Coppin State University.
Val's work in the anti-hunger movement has been profiled in leading print, television and radio broadcast such as Black Enterprise, Philadelphia Business Journal, Courier Post, Philadelphia Inquirer, ABC and NBC TV to name a few. She's received several awards for her work that includes Minority Business Leader of the Year 2011, Heroine of the Year 2011, Brava Woman of the Year 2012, 2012 South Jersey Super Women: 40 Women Making a Difference, 2012 Camden County Woman of the Month.
She is a board member of Coppin State University Foundation, member of Rotary International and a volunteer for several causes that includes adult literacy, women self- sufficiency and empowerment, youth mentoring, social enterprising and anti-hunger. She is happily married to Brehima Traore, has a teenage son Dean, and an adorable Cavapoo pup named Tonka.
Joe Njoroge, COO/CFO
As the Chief Operating Officer, Joe is charged with ensuring that all daily operations run smoothly and in compliance with expectations from various stake holders. These include State and Federal government regulations, corporate and individual donors and sponsors as well as our clients. Joe also represents the interests of the organization in various business and professional forums.
Joe works closely with the Chief Executive Officer and the Board of Trustees to create long term strategic goals that ensure the sustainability and continued growth of the organization through effective and efficient stewardship and management.
Joe also serves as the Chief Financial Officer and in that capacity, he is responsible for the financial oversight, integrity and reporting of the organization.
Originally from Kenya, Joe has spent most of his professional life in non-profit management. He graduated from Eastern University with a M.S. in Global Economic Development and Accounting. He is a member of the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) and serves on the Technology Innovation Committee of Feeding America.
Tom Sims, CDO
As the Chief Development Officer, Tom works to optimize donations to the Food Bank of South Jersey so funding is at maximum levels and that we are exceptional stewards of all gifts received. This includes working with individual, corporate, and foundations in the areas of major gifts, planned giving, appeal programs, foundation and corporate grants, events and community outreach, and other initiatives.
Tom works closely with the Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer, and the Board of Trustees to develop and enact both short-term and long-range plans to sustain and grow revenue to the Food Bank of South Jersey so that it may continue to fulfill its mission and help those in need.
With a background serving several non-profit organizations based in South Jersey, Tom has devoted his career to fundraising and managing stewardship for organizations dedicated to helping people in need. He graduated from Temple University with a B.A. in English and Certification in Business Writing. He is currently enrolled in the Executive MBA online program at the University of North Alabama and is currently an individual member of The Nonprofit Center at LaSalle University in Philadelphia, PA. At home, Tom has two beautiful daughters and is a committed walker who has been faithfully logging 100 miles each month in recent years.
Board of Trustees
- Cureton, Richard J.: Board President, former President, Whitesell Construction Company, Inc.
- Chila, Dan: Board Vice President, Chila Consulting LLC
- Socolow, David J.: Board Secretary, Vice President, Corporate Affairs, Pinnacle Foods Group LLC
- Zaun, Paul: Board Treasurer, Vice President & Chief Financial Officer, Rastelli Foods
- Brockway, Robert L.: President & Chief Operations Officer, Pepsi-Cola National Brand Beverages
- Capell, Sandra E.: Community Services Manager, Subaru of America, Inc.
- Cicalese, Reynold P., CPA, PFS, CGMA: Managing Shareholder, The Alloy Silverstein Group
- Estep, Michele B.: Executive Vice President & Chief Administrative Officer, Sun National Bank
- McMenamin, Anneliese: Vice President, Human Resources, Kennedy Health Systems
- Pekar, Bob: Chief Executive Officer, Twin Oaks Community Services
- Thevanayagam, Sam: President/CEO, Parts Life, Inc.
Photographs courtesy of Joseph Routon