Leadership of Global Countenance

In Kenya, the dust from our Land Rovers had just settled when a group of nomadic pastoralists approached us. I was with some of Food for the Hungry’s (FH) board members to see FH’s work in the field.

Ken Wathome, FH board member,  asked the group about their life. He thanked them for their dedication to their families, for inspiring hope in others, and for being open to new ideas that would increase opportunity in their communities for years to come.

Through misty eyes, he ended the conversation by saying, “You are my countrymen, and my brothers. Thank you for teaching me so much about my own country.”

Even though he is a successful international businessman, Wathome is first a Kenyan.

Last week the Food for the Hungry (FH) board of directors convened in Phoenix, Ariz. The board, along with the executive leadership of FH, are the financial and administrative stewards of the vision and mission God has blessed us with.

When we talk about the idea of walking with communities… inspiring hope… and ending poverty, these leaders are at the forefront of making decisions that help us pursue these God-sized goals.

For several years, I’ve worked alongside FH’s board members, and one thing that always amazed me was the breadth of experiences, skills and perspectives that the group brought together.

Where will you find an Indian doctor, talking to a former refugee from Rwanda and a Korean-born attorney, about child malnutrition in Guatemala? You’ll find it FH’s board meetings. You’d also hear conversations about income generation in Uganda between a British Parliamentary Lord of Ghanian decent, an administrator from the University of Wisconsin, and a prominent Kenyan businessman.

This “global countenance” of our board is important for ensuring the high-level decisions made in our organization to properly reflect the hopes and dreams of those we serve around the world.

FH board members, Dr. Jeanie Dassow, Ken Wathome and Larry Jones with Global Executive Officer Luis Noda.

As you partner with us, please know that FH is proud to be led by an extremely competent and committed group of men and women. But while they may have the credentials and experience that are often prerequisite for being on a board, FH puts a great value on the global perspective and connection that each board member has to issues of poverty.

One thing is certain about the FH board: their commitment to ending poverty is vivid in the words they say and the decisions they make. But more importantly, it is expressed in their blood connection to the most vulnerable, and their vested interest in the development of vulnerable communities.


About David Curtis

David is passionate about two things: Walking with the poor, and the New England Patriots. His interest in understanding and advocating for the poor began while spending the summer in rural South Africa, where he worked alongside a fellow 19 year old at an orphanage. The juxtaposition of life as a privileged American, with that of a determined yet struggling friend and peer from the Global South, began the trajectory of a calling to walk with the poor. Since then he has spent time working in South Africa, Indonesia and Haiti. David graduated from Calvin College as a Social Studies Teacher, combining a passion to teach with that of learning. A potent combination that strives to bring "Mutual Transformation" to the world. Go Pats!

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