LEXINGTON, Ky. — FoodChain, a Lexington nonprofit that connects the community to fresh food through education and demonstration of sustainable food systems, has named Chaquenta Neal as its new executive director.
She will be only the second executive director in the history of FoodChain, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary.
“I couldn’t be more excited to see how FoodChain grows under Ms. Neal’s direction,” said Rebecca Self, executive director and founder of FoodChain. “Her enthusiasm, natural charisma, and personal passion for community food systems and creative food education will be a true gift to the organization.
Her background with county extension and diversity recruitment ensures FoodChain will build on our established reputation as a community partner, especially advocating for and connecting with those who are food insecure.”
Chaquenta Neal, a native of Pine Bluff, Arkansas, relocated to Lexington to pursue a master’s degree in agriculture economics from University of Kentucky. She is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff with a bachelor of science in agriculture economics. Neal was a 4-H youth education agent for youth development in the UK Cooperative Extension System for more than 6 years and a UK diversity recruiter in Undergraduate Admissions for more than 2 years before being named executive director of FoodChain.
“Stepping into the role of executive director of FoodChain is definitely a full circle step for me,” Neal said. “I feel so at home with the organization and its mission. It is allowing me to bring my passion for agriculture, community, and youth development into one and that is huge for me. I am so excited about the journey ahead and humbled to serve the community of Lexington doing what I love.” Neal will begin Nov. 29.
Self will join the board of directors and will continue to serve as a community advocate for local, sustainable, equitable food production and distribution.
FoodChain, which is celebrating its 10-year anniversary, provides life-sustaining food, life-altering education and training, and life-fulfilling dignity. These achievements are accomplished by linking the community to fresh food through the distribution of nutritious meals as well as education and training – all while building sustainable food systems.
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