Sophie Bolich

Milwaukee Food Council Names First Executive Director

Solana Patterson-Ramos will focus 16-year-old organization on food equity.

By - Mar 15th, 2023 03:15 pm
Solana Patterson-Ramos. Photo courtesy of the Milwaukee Food Council.

Solana Patterson-Ramos. Photo courtesy of the Milwaukee Food Council.

For the first time in its 16-year history, the Milwaukee Food Council has selected a sole leader to steer the organization. The nonprofit on Tuesday named Solana Patterson-Ramos as its first executive director.

Patterson-Ramos brings more that 15 years of experience in community outreach to the new role, with a particular focus on youth, LGBTQIA+, and civic engagement in diverse communities. She also has a personal connection to the MFC mission.

“As someone directly impacted by food insecurity, I understand the intersectionality of age, race, gender, and socio-economic factors on the ability to consistently access nutritional meals,” she said in a statement. “When we approach food through a lens of equity, we better understand the need for deliberate action to build and connect service systems. I am grateful to the Milwaukee Food Council’s Board of Directors for the opportunity to serve in this new role.”

Patterson-Ramos was most recently a legislative aide for Senator Lena Taylor and served as Director of Community Outreach for MKE Black. She has also served on the boards of multiple local and national organizations including the ACLU Milwaukee Chapter, NAACP Milwaukee Branch, and the United States Student Association.

“We are thrilled to have Solana join the Milwaukee Food Council as executive director,” said Danielle Nabak, an MFC board member. “She has deep relationships in Milwaukee communities, an understanding of opportunities for support and impact, as well as experience in many of the key areas needed to take Milwaukee Food Council to the next level.”

In its most recent strategic plan, adopted in 2020, MFC aimed to improve access to healthy food, bolster the local food economy, reduce waste from food and packaging and advocate for policy changes to improve the city’s food system.

MFC was formed in 2007, incorporated in 2014, and achieved nonprofit status in 2016. Prior to Patterson-Ramos, the organization was led by its board of directors.

MFC is hosting a public meet and greet to welcome Patterson-Ramos. The event will take place at Company Brewing, 735 E. Center St., on Tuesday, March 28 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Those interested in attending can reserve a spot for free online.

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