Terry Shannon Honored with Lupe Sisneros Memorial Award by Phoenix CDBG Program

St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance is proud to announce President and CEO Terry Shannon was honored by the city of Phoenix Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) as the 2012 recipient of the Lupe Sisneros Memorial Award for community involvement.

The award was established in 1996 to honor the late Lupe Sisneros, a Garfield neighborhood leader whose efforts sparked widespread revitalization in her community. Shannon was honored for his eight years guiding St. Mary’s and his devotion to alleviating hunger in Phoenix and throughout Arizona. Shannon will be retiring from the Food Bank this summer to spend time this his family on the East Coast.

Congratulations Terry. Well deserved. 

St. Mary's Food Bank Alliance's President and CEO Terry Shannon weighs in on Food Assistance

Please take a few moments as St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance President and CEO Terry Shannon weighs in on the recent shocking proposal from the U.S. House of Representatives to cut food assistance for our nation’s hungry by more than $33 billion. This Op Ed appeared in both the Arizona Republic and USA Today this past weekend:


Phoenix Symphony Food Drive

Proudly serving the citizens of metropolitan Phoenix and Arizona since 1947, the Phoenix Symphony endures as a cultural treasure in its 63rd year. And the state’s only full-time professional orchestra will again conduct a food drive to benefit another Arizona institution – St. Mary’s Food Bank – during its March 26-28 performances of “Star Wars Mania” at Symphony Hall.

Prior to each performance, St. Mary’s volunteers will be stationed outside the Hall to accept food and cash donations. St. Mary’s distributes enough food to provide 300,000 meals to 13 of Arizona’s 15 counties, and the need is greater than it has ever been with housing foreclosures and unemployment so prevalent in the state.

So before enjoying conductor Robert Moody and the Symphony’s tribute to the magnificent scores of John Williams, help St. Mary’s Food Bank continue its mission of feeding the hungry each day. Each dollar donated to the food bank can provide several meals to the one in 12 seniors and one in five children in Arizona who struggle with hunger issues.

“We are very pleased and appreciative of this opportunity to partner with the wonderful Phoenix Symphony and thank them for its continued support,” said St. Mary’s Food Bank President and CEO Terry Shannon. “There is no way the Food Bank would be able to accomplish its mission without such committed partners and the continuing generosity of the people of Arizona.”

St. Mary’s Thanks Rep. Mitchell For Donation

U.S. Rep. Harry Mitchell will donate his $8,500 Congressional pay raise to 15 local charities, including St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance.

“More and more people are in need of assistance right now, and the nonprofit organizations that provide help are more important than ever,” Mitchell said.

For more information on Mitchell’s donation, log on to his website at Mitchell.house.gov.

Mr. Mitchell and Mr. Shannon

Mr. Mitchell and Mr. Shannon


Organization of Non-Profit Executives Awards Terry Shannon with the 2009 Community Partnership Award

St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance President and CEO Terry Shannon was named a Director of the Year during an awards luncheon on March 20 by ONE, the Organization of Non-Profit Executives. Shannon was awarded the Community Partnership Award in recognition of collaboration between the Food Bank, the Maricopa County Department of Public Health and the Arizona Department of Health Services to build a Community Services Campus at the 31st Avenue location.

Opened officially in October 2008, the center was a direct result of close collaboration, led by Shannon, between the three agencies. Now the Community Service Campus offers a federally-directed supplemental nutrition program, WIC, which provides preventive health services and education to women, infants and children most in need, in a new, cheerful, well-designed building that is safe and convenient to the population it serves.

Through a broad network of local partners including the Food Bank, the county and the state, critical services such as breastfeeding support, supplemental meals, emergency food boxes, nutrition and education are available to aid families seeking to get back on their feet and raise healthy children.

“I believe it is a great partnership because both of our organizations, while delivering different products, are working to lift up our community and help those who are having a tough time,” Mr. Shannon said in a letter to Food Bank staff. “Together we deliver ‘hope,’”

Giving With Gumballs…


St. Mary's Food Bank Alliance CEO Terry Shannon and Bob Mahoney, ON Semiconductor Executive Vice President, Sales & Marketing and the gumball machine plaque.

St. Mary's Food Bank Alliance CEO Terry Shannon and Bob Mahoney, ON Semiconductor Executive Vice President, Sales & Marketing and the gumball machine plaque.

by Kara Fort, Communications Specialist at St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance


People often wonder how they can make a difference for our food bank. Here’s a perfect example of how ON Semiconductor decided to get creative about giving.



At ON Semiconductor in Phoenix…there is a 7-foot tall green gumball machine designed to look like a vintage filling station gas pump standing in the main hallway at ON Semiconductor’s headquarters. Not your typical corporate hallway décor to be sure. This kitschy looking vending machine was originally purchased on eBay for use at a company automotive electronics tradeshow booth. At the conference, the gumball machine was a big hit – dispensing green gumballs akin to the ON Semiconductor logo. Several of the automotive enthusiasts who visited the ON Semiconductor booth offered to buy the gumball machine outright. No go! The odd amenity was shipped back to Arizona. Rather than store it away, it found a new home in the main hallway near a display promoting the company’s automotive products.


“When we put it in the hallway I figured the gumballs would get hard enough to break someone’s tooth long before we would ever have to refill the machine,” said Anne Spitza, the corporate communications manager who’d enlisted the machine for the tradeshow. “Yet every couple weeks I noticed the gumballs were dwindling. I got a call one day from the facilities department saying the gumball machine was jammed. We opened it up and discovered it was backed up with quarters. A lot of quarters. That was when we realized the machine would annually generate enough money to donate to a good cause.

DoDie Hernandez from ON Semiconductor’s Sales and Marketing team had been coordinating employee volunteer groups for St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance so we were well aware of the organizations contribution to the community. Donating the ‘gumball money’ – as we’d come to call it – to the food bank made good sense. Certainly, the machine’s become an example that every little bit not only counts… but adds up.”


How much does it add up? ON Semiconductor was able to give St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance a check of$778.87 which will go towards delivering 5,446 meals into the community.

THANK YOU………..ON Semiconductor!

Charity Navigator Ranks SMFBA "Exceptional"

St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance Ranked “Exceptional”
By Charity Navigator


Only 2 percent of charities receive 4-star evaluations for six consecutive years proving St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance outperforms most other charities in America


PHOENIXSt. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance has received a four-star rating from Charity Navigator, the leading charity evaluator in America, making the world’s first food bank one of 2 percent of the charities rated to receive the designation for its ability to efficiently manage and grow its finances.


This exceptional designation indicates that St. Mary’s Food Bank Allliance consistently executes its mission in a fiscally responsible way, and outperforms most other charities in America, says Ken Berger, President and CEO of Charity Navigator. “This differentiates St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance from its peers and demonstrates to the public it is worthy of their trust,” says Berger.


“Sound fiscal management is the cornerstone of our organization,” says Terry Shannon, President and CEO of St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance. “In a competitive philanthropic marketplace, it is humbling to be ranked by America’s premier charity evaluator with such high accolades.”


The users of Charity Navigator (www.charitynavigator.org) influence more than $10 billion in charitable gifts.

Will it Be Enough?

Dear Friends of the Food Bank,

I’ve been asked how things are going at the Food Bank – and I can tell you, the current economic trends dramatically affecting our community – are having a serious impact on the Food Bank. This is not a year like any other we have seen before.

Although we have seen a modest increase in food donations compared to the same time last year, I can tell you it is not enough. And, while financial donations are tracking about the same as last year, I can tell you – it will not be enough.

We are being challenged in ways we could not have anticipated. Food is going out the door much faster than it is coming in. And the food is going to families that have never relied on charity before.

We’ve all seen the news; businesses are closing, banks are not lending, the price of food and gas have hit everyone’s pocketbook – and I know – many of us are running our household budgets lean and mean.

Just the other day, I was discussing these challenges with a colleague – a woman who spends her days providing for families in need. Her husband had lost his job a number of months ago. Suddenly, a family, who is not necessarily in dire need, is taking steps to cut expenses. No more dry cleaning, no more dinners out, the frivolities are over. While out of work her husband finds he has time to do many things. He can do the landscaping, the housecleaning, the shopping, and the laundry. Their family is cutting back – just so they can get by. It makes sense.

But the housekeeper just lost a client. So did the landscaper. So did the dry cleaner. So did the waitress, the chef, the manicurist, the shopkeeper. As more and more of us cut back – it affects more and more of our neighbors.

As business after business closes… more and more of our neighbors are finding themselves out of work.

Our neighbors are losing their jobs. Our neighbors are losing their homes. Many of our neighbors are losing hope.

We usually think of having a home, a job, a car and some spending money as a right – but today, we’re the lucky ones.

We must work together – as a nation, as a state – as a community – to provide for our neighbors in need. This year is different. It’s not just those who live in poverty we must help – it’s not just children and the elderly – this year, it’s our neighbor. We have to do this together. It is for the good of our neighborhoods and our communities.

I ask you to do one thing. Take a moment now to consider what our community would look like if St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance could not provide the food that hundreds of Arizona agencies rely on.

Especially if the cities, churches and shelters we serve could not deliver meals for our hungry neighbors.

If our neighbors truly were out of hope.

We will do the best we can. We will do ALL we can – and we hope it will be enough. But we can’t do it—without your help. Please go to our web site and make a donation.

Thank you,

Terry Shannon
President & CEO
St. Mary’s Food Bank

I’m Concerned…

brought to you by Cynde C., Director of Community Relations, St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance

In a recent direct mail piece, President and CEO Terry Shannon sent out a note to all of our donors telling them about his concern. In the note, Terry talks about the new face of our clients – middle class families who never would have thought they would find themselves needing food from a human services organization. He also talked about the incredible increase in giving to political campaigns and the affect it is having on organizations like the Food Bank. We are certainly not alone in our need for financial donations; nonprofits across the country are finding the current economic climate very tough.

While monetary and food donations decreased during the summer, demand hit a high that we haven’t seen at the Food Bank usually during the summer. Yes, while the summer is very busy for us (our busiest time of the year), this year was exceptionally high.

At the beginning of the summer, we were thinking that perhaps the economy wouldn’t change the summer distribution too much because the average number of Emergency Food Boxes distributed in May, June and July were 14,300 boxes. Then, August hit and we distributed 17,000 EFB boxes; September, 19,000 EFB Boxes. September was a 40 percent increase. Some of our partner agencies are seeing a 100 percent increase in demand for their services.

The face of the people who need food from the Food Bank is changing. And, with the current economic trends, I don’t think this trend will fade any time soon. Now we look forward to the holidays and the task to provide 10 Million Meals for a Hunger-Free Holiday.

Terry has a reason to be concerned…and so should every person who wants to see their neighbors, friends, and family thrive and rise above the current crisis.

How do you think we can tackle this challenge?

Media Coverage for Food Bank Crisis Continues…

brought to you by Kara Ritter, Communications Specialist, St. Mary’s Food Bank

Arizona Food Banks are in “A Crisis”
ABC Channel 15 reported 9/29/08
by Nicole Beyer


Thank you to Reporter Nicole Beyer and Cameraman Jeff Cochran for their time, effort and commitment to interviewing St. Mary’s Food Bank CEO and President Terry Shannon and report on balanced urgent community issues.

Food Bank Reports 100 Percent Increase in Requests
Reported 9/30/08
by Jon Zimney

Thank you to FM News/Talk 92.3 KTAR News Director Jon Zimney for taking the time to listen and understand the issues facing the community and delivering them to KTAR’s audience. Zimney’s compassion goes a long way on these issues, and many many others.


Early this morning at 8 a.m. Flagstaff’s St. Mary’s General Manager Eric Wolverton was interviewed on Arizona Public Radio KNAU to discuss the increase need from the working poor for emergency food boxes. Thank you KNAU!


NBC’s Telemundo’s Patricia Batres along with Cameraman Jose Castillo and WunderIntern Jesus Ledezma joined us this morning to interview St. Mary’s Food Resourcing Queen Hortencia Garcia to understand and translate the issue into Spanish for our community. Patricia took extra time and exquisite detail to interview agencies and clients to understand and produce this issue. This, despite a very hot warehouse…She even called herself St. Mary’s Interview Queen! Look for Telemundo’s piece 5 p.m. tonight and tomorrow morning between 7 and 8 a.m.


Finally, our CEO and President Terry Shannon will be a guest on AZTV’s Pat McMahon Show tomorrow at 9 a.m. Laura Holka is making this segment happen with Pat McMahon, and being a Valley legend, we couldn’t be happier for a personality like him to help talk about such a pressing issue. Thanks Laura & Pat! Tune in tomorrow at 9 a.m.!

Journalists have a choice in what they cover every day. We thank the distinguished reporters, producers, cameramen, writers and staff who make stories and coverage happen.