Suzanne Behnke is the executive director and editor of IowaWatch - the Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism, a nonprofit news outlet dedicated to investigative journalism and teaching student journalists, and she serves an adjunct professor at Simpson and Wartburg colleges. She began serving on the board in 2019. Suzanne supports the Urbandale Food Pantry because she is passionate about meeting one of humans’ greatest needs -- nutrition. The best part of serving on the board is serving the community she lives in as well as having her family join her in volunteering at the pantry and its events. Suzanne is the board’s president in 2022.
Aline Alves da Costa holds a Bachelor’s Degree in International Studies with a focus in governance and conflict resolution. Currently, she is a Master’s of Public Administration candidate at the University of Wyoming. Her diverse background consists of experience in non-governmental organizations as well as the public and private sector, with a passion for community engagement and governmental affairs. She believes that addressing food insecurity is a matter of justice and dignity. Aline’s shared passion for community service prompted her to join a service-oriented organization. She is looking forward to supporting the team and their key strategies to bring Urbandale Food Pantry’s mission and goals to fruition.
Caleb Cooper is a self-employed attorney at Cooper Law PLLC focusing on providing business clients support in many areas of the law including commercial contract negotiations. Caleb joined the board in 2023. Caleb supports the food pantry because he knows what it’s like to go hungry and wants to do what he can to address food insecurity in his community.
Greg Dockum has been Vice President-Finance at West Bank for 17 years. A resident of Urbandale since 1989, he recently completed nine years on the Johnston School Board, serving five years as president. While working with the district’s families, the fact that food insecurity is an issue here locally in our community was evident, and he helped institute several programs to provide meals to students before and after school, at lunch and during the summer. Greg continues this work by supporting the Urbandale Food Pantry in our efforts to provide food assistance to our neighbors and friends with dignity and compassion. Greg joined the board in 2023.
Bill Fugenshuch has been retired from QRG since October 2019. He began serving on the board in January 2020. Bill supports the food pantry because he believes in giving back to his community. The best part of serving is providing meaningful services to our friends and neighbors. Bill is the board’s vice president in 2022.
Aaron Friess is a senior attorney at BHE Renewables. Aaron began serving on the board in January 2021. Aaron supports the food pantry because no family should face food insecurity. The best part of serving is the opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the lives of his neighbors. Aaron is the board's secratary in 2022.
Nathan Gast is the pastor of Urbandale Baptist Church. He began serving on the board in October 2017. Nathan supports the food pantry because as a community member of Urbandale, he believes that he has a responsibility to help others that live in the metro be successful, feel positive about having their needs met, and that it’s just simply the neighborly thing to do. As a pastor, he recognizes that we are to do unto others as we would have them do unto us. The best part of serving is getting to meet new people and serve others.
Christopher Han is currently the General Partner of Grant Barco Capital, a venture capital firm based in Des Moines that focuses on food and beverage startups. Prior to starting his company, he was previously the National Director of Sales & Distribution for Anheuser-Busch where he was responsible for leading sales and accelerating organic growth – leading multiple aspects of channel growth and strategy.
Previously before joining Anheuser-Busch, Christopher held numerous sales positions at PepsiCo where he was spearheading sales for major brands such as Gatorade, Quaker, Tropicana, & Naked Juice. He was responsible for in-store execution and selling of PepsiCo products within the Walmart channels and large format grocery channels for the heartland Midwest region. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Villanova University.
Mark Hood is a staff engineer at John Deere Intelligent Solutions Group, where he specializes in product performance and reliability measurements development. He has a master of science degree in electrical engineering from the State University of New York at Buffalo. Additionally, Mark is a U.S. Army veteran who served his country with honor for nine years, and participated in Operation Enduring Freedom. Mark began his service on the board in 2020. Serving on the board is an opportunity for him to support the needs of his community and to provide a hand to those who have fallen on hard times due to no fault of their own. Mark supports the food pantry because of its mission to provide food assistance with dignity and compassion.
Judy Kendzora is a tax director at Sammons Financial/Midland National Life Insurance Company. Judy began serving on the board in 2019. Judy supports the food pantry because people need a hand up now and then. The best part of serving is knowing we’re making a difference in the lives of our neighbors in need. Judy is the treasurer of the board in 2022.
Rick W. Levi is retired from Consolidated Management Co., an on-site food service company in November 2017. He worked in the food service industry for almost 50 years. Rick began serving on the board in January, 2022. He has served on several non-profit boards and has volunteered in an area food pantry for over four years. Rick believes in giving back to the community by helping its residents succeed and prosper.
Kelly Moore is a Des Moines-area marketer and president of PR Collective. Kelly began serving on the board in 2018. She quickly became a passionate advocate for raising awareness of food insecurity issues and compassionate service to the city's neighbors in need.
Joan Racki has lived in Urbandale since 1993. She retired from her position on the Board of Regents in December 2016. Joan has served on the City of Urbandale’s Planning and Zoning Commission since 2012, serves on the Endow Urbandale Board of Directors, and has volunteered with other organizations in the community – most recently providing tax assistance through AARP Tax-Aide. She is an active participant at the Urbandale Senior Recreation Center and also serves on its planning committee.
Sarah Spilman is the owner and principal consultant for Diligent Research & Consulting, a small business that provides project management, feasibility analyses, and report writing for clients in a variety of industries, including healthcare, financial management, and nonprofit. She recently completed two terms on the Des Moines Christian School Board of Trustees, where she served as secretary and a member of the governance committee. Sarah and her family began volunteering at the UFP in 2018 and serve together as a family on Saturday mornings. She is committed to the UFP mission to help lighten the burden for individuals and families who are food insecure, and she believes strongly in the UFP philosophy to treat all clients with respect, dignity, and understanding. Sarah began serving on the Board of Directors in 2022.
Danielle Williams is an associate and senior interior designer at SVPA Architects Inc. She recently completed a two-year term on the Iowa Interior Design Examining Board where she served as a professional member. Danielle started volunteering for the Food Bank of Iowa in 2020 and joined the Urbandale Food Pantry Board of Directors in 2023.
Derek Zarn is the communications director for the City of Urbandale. He graduated from Iowa State University and has held various positions in public relations, marketing, design, and technology at the City of Urbandale, City of Ames, and Iowa State University. Derek began serving on the board in 2021. Derek supports the Urbandale Food Pantry through focusing on advocacy and education, public policy and local governmental measures, and fundraising events.
Patty Sneddon-Kisting - Executive Director. Patty is a Des Moines native and resides in Grimes with her wife Lisa and 4 kids. She has a MPA in nonprofit governance + health & human service and spent the past 13 years in the nonprofit sector. Patty is on the Board of Directors of GiGi’s Playhouse, and chairs committees with United Way of Central Iowa and Lead DSM. When she is not doing all things food insecurity you can find her enjoying family time, running or working out.
Linzi Winton - Operations Manager. Linzi lives in Urbandale with her husband, Carter, and their 2 sons. She has worked at the pantry since January 2016. During her free time you can find her at Kinnick in the fall, doing puzzles in the winter, hiking in the spring, and indoors in the summer.
Jennifer Stanley - Intake Assistant. Jennifer started working at the Urbandale Food Pantry in March 2022. She has lived in Urbandale for over 20 years, and both of her kids are Urbandale graduates. She spends her time away from the pantry with her husband of 32 years, their 2 dogs, and 2 cats.
Kyrsten Heffelfinger - Intake Assistant. Kyrsten is an Urbandale native who has been working in central Iowa food pantries since 2016. She is a mom to three boys and enjoys spending time with her family as well as riding motorcycles and cooking. She believes that kindness is key when serving our community.
Carrie Stephens - Carrie is a Des Moines area native and has a Bachelor's in Education from Iowa State. She and her husband have lived in Urbandale for 20+ years and have three adult children. She's been with the Urbandale Food Pantry since 2015 (first as a volunteer, then as staff). Carrie credits UFP for opening her eyes to our country's food insecurity epidemic. She's currently honored and thankful to be a UCSD Substitute teacher and a UFP Substitute Intake Assistant. She's convinced that the world would be a better place if we all treated everyone the way we want to be treated.