Filling hungry stomachs for 55 years!

Our Mission


St. Mary’s Food Bank serves to alleviate hunger through the gathering and distribution of food while encouraging self-sufficiency, collaboration, advocacy and education.


St. Mary’s Food Bank is truly a community-based organization. Individual donors, corporate donors, and private grants help feed hungry individuals and families in our area. Serving 9 of Arizona’s 15 counties, we are committed to volunteerism, building community relationships and improving the quality of life for Arizonans in need.




A Hungry, Young Mother. A Man With a Mission and a New Goal.


These were the beginnings of the world’s first food bank. John van Hengel founded St. Mary’s Food Bank in 1967. He had been volunteering at a local soup kitchen, serving dinner to those in need when a young mother told him that she depended on soup kitchens and food from grocery store dumpsters to feed her children. Van Hengel’s heart was broken. His conversation with the young woman ignited a desire to help hungry families like hers, so he came up with the idea of a “Food Bank,” where individuals and companies with excess food could “deposit” it, and those in need could “withdraw” it.

His local parish, St. Mary’s Basilica in downtown Phoenix, gave him $3,000 and an abandoned building where he was able to turn his dream into reality, and in gratitude, he named his food bank “St. Mary’s.” He then went on to become the founder of several other food banks across the country and even founded the national organization America’s Second Harvest (known today as Feeding America). Years later, van Hengel also founded the Global Food Banking network. John van Hengel is rightly referred to as “the father of food banking” with it starting right here at St. Mary’s Food Bank in Phoenix, Arizona.

Today, St. Mary’s Food Bank is one of the largest food banks in the United States, and proud of the impact it has had on Arizona — and the world.

Our Mission


St. Mary’s Food Bank serves to alleviate hunger through the gathering and distribution of food while encouraging self-sufficiency, collaboration, advocacy and education.


St. Mary’s Food Bank is truly a community-based organization. Individual donors, corporate donors, and private grants help feed hungry individuals and families in our area. Serving 9 of Arizona’s 15 counties, we are committed to volunteerism, building community relationships and improving the quality of life for Arizonans in need.




A Hungry, Young Mother. A Man With a Mission and a New Goal.


These were the beginnings of the world’s first food bank. John van Hengel founded St. Mary’s Food Bank in 1967. He had been volunteering at a local soup kitchen, serving dinner to those in need when a young mother told him that she depended on soup kitchens and food from grocery store dumpsters to feed her children. Van Hengel’s heart was broken. His conversation with the young woman ignited a desire to help hungry families like hers, so he came up with the idea of a “Food Bank,” where individuals and companies with excess food could “deposit” it, and those in need could “withdraw” it.

His local parish, St. Mary’s Basilica in downtown Phoenix, gave him $3,000 and an abandoned building where he was able to turn his dream into reality, and in gratitude, he named his food bank “St. Mary’s.” He then went on to become the founder of several other food banks across the country and even founded the national organization America’s Second Harvest (known today as Feeding America). Years later, van Hengel also founded the Global Food Banking network. John van Hengel is rightly referred to as “the father of food banking” with it starting right here at St. Mary’s Food Bank in Phoenix, Arizona.

Today, St. Mary’s Food Bank is one of the largest food banks in the United States, and proud of the impact it has had on Arizona — and the world.


Financial Accountability & Transparency

95% of all donations* received at St. Mary’s Food Bank directly funds our mission to help feed the hungry throughout most of Arizona.

St. Mary’s maintains a system of internal accounting controls, ensuring that all transactions are properly executed and recorded, all assets are safeguarded, and all established policies and procedures are carefully followed.

You can see the impact of your donations by viewing St. Mary’s financial reports below.

Internal Revenue Service Form 990


Audited Financials

Records Retention and Destruction Policy

Note: This statement of revenue, allocations and expenses is the responsibility of the management of St. Mary’s Food Bank. *Cash and non-cash based on audited financials.

Our Team

For everyone working at St. Mary’s Food Bank, ending hunger in Arizona is more than our profession. It is our life’s mission. Our team is made up of passionate professionals who believe that everyone has the right to a nutritious meal. We invite you to take a moment to get to know us.

 

Board of Directors

 
 

Our Team

For everyone working at St. Mary’s Food Bank, ending hunger in Arizona is more than our profession. It is our life’s mission. Our team is made up of passionate professionals who believe that everyone has the right to a nutritious meal. We invite you to take a moment to get to know us.

 

Board of Directors

 
 

Our Senior Leadership

Tom Kertis
President & CEO

Marcos Gaucin
Chief Programs Officer

Duane Lawson
Chief Operations Officer

Lisa Notaro, CFRE
Chief Development & Community Relations Officer

Sarah Stuckey, CPA
Chief Financial Officer

Our Senior Leadership

Tom Kertis
President & CEO
Marcos Gaucin
Chief Programs Officer
Duane Lawson
Chief Operations Officer
Lisa Notaro, CFRE
Chief Development & Community Relations Officer
Sarah Stuckey, CPA
Chief Financial Officer