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  • Writer's pictureHunger-Free Pennsylvania

Fighting Hunger for 30 Years

Sheila Christopher is presented with a proclamation from the Governor.

Cheryl Cook, Deputy Secretary for Agriculture’s Market Development, presented a proclamation by Gov. Tom Wolf to Sheila.

Our Executive Director, Sheila Christopher has been an advocate for the hungry for 30 years. During that time, she has been fighting to feed families, unite communities, affect policy, and change lives.

Today, the Hunger-Free Pennsylvania (HFPA) board, its partner organizations and representatives of the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) celebrated Sheila’s achievements by turning a run-of-the-mill board meeting in State College into a surprise ceremony!

Both PDA and USDA presented Christopher with proclamations for her decades of service. She also received citations from the state House and Senate, as well as expressions of appreciation from Gov. Tom Wolf, U.S. Senator Bob Casey and Congressman Tim Murphy.

As you can tell, we’re all big fans of Sheila and the work that she does. Here is what a few folks had to say about Sheila’s dedication:

“Sheila Christopher is Pennsylvania’s true anti-hunger champion. Fighting hunger is a year-round battle. For Sheila, it has been a lifelong commitment.”

- Karen Seggi, executive director of the Second Harvest Food Bank of NW PA in Erie and president of HFPA’s board of directors

“For three decades, Sheila Christopher has been steadfast in her dedication to ensuring that all Pennsylvanians have access to the food resources they need. It is largely due to Sheila’s direction and determination that innovative feeding programs, such as the Pennsylvania State Food Purchase Program and the Pennsylvania Agricultural Surplus System, were enacted into state law and continue to receive annual funding. I commend Sheila for her work and look forward to our continued partnership in the fight against hunger in the Commonwealth.”

- Russell Redding, Secretary, Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture

“Sheila Christopher is a valued, long-time partner in the fight against hunger. Her leadership and dedication has had a tremendous, positive impact on communities across Pennsylvania.”

- Patricia Dombroski, Administrator for the USDA’s Mid-Atlantic Region

You can see what others had to say about Sheila in this VIDEO by HFPA members.

Hunger-Free Pennsylvania launched in 1983 as the Pennsylvania Association of Regional Food Banks, Christopher joined in 1987 as a volunteer helping to deliver healthy meals --- and maybe a bit of hope --- to some of the state’s neediest residents. She hasn’t stopped fighting for three decades.

You can read more about Sheila’s accomplishments --- like her advocacy for creation of and support for the State Food Purchase Program (SFPP), her work to initiate the establishment of the Pennsylvania Agricultural Surplus System (PASS), and the acclaim she received for boosting participation of state residents in the federal Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP) --- in this RELEASE.

Countless Pennsylvanians are better off today because of Sheila’s advocacy. We are so thankful for her contributions over the past 30 years and look forward to many more.

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