Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank

Duquesne, PA   |


The mission of Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank is to feed people in need and mobilize our community to eliminate hunger. We are a proud member of Feeding America. The Food Bank leadership and board of directors have a shared vision of a hunger-free southwestern Pennsylvania.

Ruling year info


President & CEO

Lisa Scales

Main address

1 N. Linden Street

Duquesne, PA 15110 USA

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NTEE code info

Emergency Assistance (Food, Clothing, Cash) (P60)

Food Banks, Food Pantries (K31)

Food Service, Free Food Distribution Programs (K30)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Food Distribution to Network Partners

The Food Bank sources food from manufacturers, retailers, food brokers, farmers and government entities and stores it in our warehouse until it is delivered to our network of more than 400 partner agencies (including smaller regional and rural food banks, food pantries, homeless shelters and senior centers) and seven Partner Distribution Organizations (PDOs) that support an additional 200 agencies throughout our 11-county service region.

In Fiscal Year 2019, the Food Bank network distributed more than 35 million meals.

Population(s) Served

A direct mobile distribution program, the Produce to People model provides a more accessible way for eligible people to receive free food through a dignified, high quality process centered on the distribution of, primarily, fresh and, when possible, local produce. In Fiscal Year 2019, the Food Bank hosted more than 200 Produce to People distributions, serving 18 distressed neighborhoods in our region and distributed more than 3.3 million pounds of food to families in need.

Population(s) Served

Green Grocer is a mobile farmers market that is designed to travel into food desert communities to provide the fresh food options that are currently missing from the landscape. By selling fresh, healthy foods at an affordable price Green Grocer helps alleviate food inequity by creating access. Everyone is welcome to shop at the market and we accept multiple forms of payment, including SNAP/EBT and Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) vouchers.

Population(s) Served

The primary goal of this effort is to significantly reduce food insecurity by increasing participation in food assistance programs, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Women, Infants, Children Program (WIC), Farmers Market Nutrition Program (FMNP), Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), School Breakfast and Lunch Programs and Charitable Food Assistance Programs.

In 2017, the Food Bank helped 798 people submit SNAP applications which resulted in 771,000 to families who received benefits. Additionally, our summer feeding team supported 45 Summer Food Service Program partners which resulted in one million summer meals for kids in need.

Population(s) Served

Community Table pairs partners with the Food Bank’s agencies providing planned, prepared meals to families in need. We ask that the meals consist of a protein, vegetable and starch. These can be items prepared from scratch or prepared in coordination with excess from the day’s menu. Since the program began in 2009, Community Table has provided more than 1,000,000 meals to neighbors in need!

Population(s) Served

To effectively reach the people who rely on us for food assistance each month, we work to build the capacity of our partner agencies through our Agency Needs Fund, which supports the purchase of necessary equipment and food, development of agency standards to promote a high-quality client experience and other initiatives aimed at strengthening our network’s capacity.

All Food Bank partner agencies must participate in food safety training to ensure safe food handling at their facilities. Our nutrition staff facilitates this training and hosts cooking demonstrations at agencies. Through Choose Healthy Options Program (CHOPSM) — our proprietary food nutrient ranking system – the Cooking, Activity and Nutrition newsletter and our Recipe Rainbow recipe database and smartphone application, nutrition staff provide education throughout the network and the region.

Population(s) Served

Where we work


Since 2006

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank exists because growing numbers of people in our community struggle with meeting a basic human need — food.

The Meal Gap, our official measure of food insecurity, represents the meals missing from the homes of families and individuals struggling to put food on the table — that is, when household food budgets fall too short to secure adequate, nutritious food year-round.

According to Feeding America’s annual in-depth study of hunger and food insecurity, there are more than 322,000 individuals in the Food Bank’s service area who experience food insecurity. For those people, there was a shortfall in 2014 of more than 58 million meals needed to meet their food needs. These missing meals are the meal gap in southwestern Pennsylvania.

Objectives identified in our current strategic plan demonstrate how the Food Bank has invested its time, energy, resources and passion to:

Feed: Implement innovative, quality-focused distribution strategies to foster a high-quality client experience. Objectives include:
• Identify and establish new ways to give food away to people who need it.
• Define the key indicators of success in "quality access to food" and create a scoring system for pantries and programs.
• Establish sustainable ways to sell healthy food in food deserts.
• Establish and implement standards/goals for nutritional content and product mix of food we distribute.

Lead: Develop an exceptional network of engaged PDOs and member agencies that provide quality access to food. Objectives include:
• Develop and implement a new process for agency membership that enlists high-performing agencies, prepares them to provide service in identified areas of need, and serves as a model for PDOs to replicate.
• Create, communicate and enforce member network standards that promote a quality client experience.
• Segment agencies into categories based upon set criteria that will enable GPCFB to more effectively evaluate performance, allocate resources, and work strategically with members of the network.
• Establish a Network Excellence Academy designed to address member educational needs and provide opportunities to build network capacity.

Engage: Grow community engagement through strategic public education, advocacy and media relations campaigns that promote the mission of the Food Bank. Objectives include:
• Establish the Food Bank's brand in the region and nationally.
• Develop a comprehensive public education program that provides specific audiences with information, resources and motivation to end hunger in our region.
• Build upon the Food Bank's local, regional and national position as a leader in the anti-hunger movement.
• Increase the breadth of participation in Food Bank activities by corporate and individual volunteers.
• Create a Communications Department that is responsive, anticipatory and effective in providing strategy, leadership, materials and support to GPCFB personnel, departments, programs and initiatives.

Support: Develop integrated processes that support the mission and goals of the Food Bank. Objectives include:
• Create a data model (visualization) for the organization.
• Create a network portal that provides a single point of entry for PDOs and member agencies.
• Develop a client level information system.
• Identify, map and improve key business processes.
• Create an online, mobile, app-based brand presence that is consistent and appealing.

Our primary goal at the Food Bank is to decrease the Meal Gap and reduce food insecurity in southwestern Pennsylvania. To do so will take all of us working together. By recognizing the size of the challenge, and what factors impact it year in and year out, we can work throughout our region to develop effective and efficient ways to meet it.

The Food Bank traditionally sets our annual goals and objectives based on pounds of food distributed and numbers of people served during the prior year. These traditional metrics populate the Map the Meal Gap report and help the Feeding America network understand hunger and the efforts of food banks nationwide to meet that need.

We measure:
• Cost per pound delivered which defines our whole cost per pound, not just the cost of procuring and/or handling food products. On average, we know that processed foods cost us around 59 cents per pound and that produce costs us around 13 cents per pound to source, ship, handle and deliver.
• Percent of enabled pounds which counts the portion of food we help to distribute without ever physically touching it. When the Food Bank connects a farmer with excess apples in Washington County to a food pantry in Washington County and helps that pantry directly receive those apples, we eliminate the costs associated with shipping the apples to Allegheny County and then back to Washington County. Whenever possible, we push to enable the delivery of food rather than warehouse it here at our facility.
• Meals per person in need which captures every pound of food we help bring to our 11-county network whether that is an enabled pound (like the Washington County apples), a physical pound (like the oranges we buy from California, ship to our warehouse and distribute in trucks to our members and partners) or a virtual pound (like the milk and eggs our neighbors in need are able to purchase when we help them enroll in SNAP benefits). All those meals count toward meeting the need in our community.
We realize that goals set and measured by these metrics do not offer the most comprehensive picture of our collective impact, nor are they the most effective means by which to measure our impact in the region. As a result, the Food Bank is actively evaluating Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software options to help us understand more about the people we help and how we help them. Currently, we know exactly how many families attend each Produce to People distribution. What we don't know is whether a family who picks up 55 pounds of fresh food at Produce to People at our distribution in Duquesne is also visiting the Squirrel Hill Food Pantry for additional help in feeding their family. We know that having a better understanding of the needs and demands of our neighbors will help us make more strategic decisions about where, when and how to use our resources.

Over the past year, the Food Bank has worked diligently and efficiently to meet and exceed our goals. Our accomplishments during Fiscal Year 2018-19 included:

• Distributing food for nearly 35,500,000 meals in our 11-county service area.
• Providing more than 10 million pounds of healthy produce to people in need throughout the region. Since 2016, we’ve increased our fresh produce distribution by 1 million pounds annually.
• Engaging nearly 6,000 volunteers who contributed more than 48,000 hours valued at $1,341,203, or the equivalent of nearly 26 full time equivalents (FTE).
• Hosting more than 200 Produce to People distributions, serving 18 sites in our region and distributing more than 3.3 million pounds of food, including 2.9 million pounds of produce, for the equivalent of more than 2.8 million meals.
• Sponsoring food for 40 afterschool program sites that served 133,247 meals and 116,646 snacks to more than 2,100 kids as part of the USDA Child & Adult Care Food Program (CACFP).
• Providing support to more than 200 partners that served more than 1 million meals to children in our 11-county service area during summer 2018 through our Summer Food Service Program.
• Pairing 66 local restaurants with 33 food assistance agencies through the Community Table program to provide more than 141,000 meals to people in need.
• Working with 331 retail stores that donated nearly 9.5 million pounds of food, more than half of which went directly to our member agencies.
• Collecting more than 1.4 million pounds of fresh, donated food from local and Pennsylvania farms.
• Harvesting, in the past growing season, nearly 44,000 pounds of produce that otherwise would have gone to waste during 12 gleaning sessions at local farms.
• Collecting more than 1.3 million pounds of food from Community Food Drives.
• Holding six pop-up distributions in response to the government shutdown, providing more than 65,000 meals to 780 households plus an additional 145 families in February who needed emergency food due to the early release of February SNAP benefits in January.
• Assisting 1,736 people with submitting SNAP applications, resulting in more than 1.2 million meals.


Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


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Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank

Board of directors
as of 11/17/2019
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

John McIntyre

Reed Smith

Ken Johnston

Peoples Natural Gas

Amy Lewis

Maher Duessel

George McGrady

Giant Eagle, Inc.

Michael Mullen

Kraft Heinz Company

Mel Steals

PNC Bank

Anne Foulkes

PPG Industries Inc.

Don Ziegler

Fed Ex Ground

Marva Brown

PNC Bank

James Grosjean

A.C. Dellovade Incorporated

Laura Soller

Bay Valley Foods

Roderick Harris

Allegheny County Health Department

Imogene Hines

Retired: Community College of Allegheny County

Abass Kamara

The Carey Group

Suzie Lachut

Eat'n Park Hospitality Group

Caroline Lee

Community College of Allegheny County

Ed McCallister


Patricia McElligott

Freelance Writer

John McIntyre

Reed Smith

Gary Mulholland

Retired: Community Volunteer

Jean Rush

Highmark, Inc.

David Sharick

University of Pittsburgh, Katz Business School

Janel Skelley

Allegheny Conference

Ed Steinmetz

Giant Eagle, Inc.

Regina Vercilla

Gateway Health

Mike Hamberg

Google Inc.

Jerome Gloster

North Side Christian Health Center

Patti Gerhauser

Hazelwood Initiative

Bill Fuller

Big Burrito

Adam Davila

UPMC Health Plan

Steve Carpenter

Huntington National Bank

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes