Meet Merilee Baptiste of Midwest Food Bank, Arizona Division

Business Name
Midwest Food Bank, NFP

Business Website

What is your name?
Merilee Baptiste

Promotional Video

What is your name?
Merilee Baptiste

How many years have you been in business?
5 1/2

What product or service do you offer?
As a faith-based organization, it is the mission of Midwest Food Bank to share the love of Christ by alleviating hunger and malnutrition locally and throughout the world and providing disaster relief; all without discrimination. Our vision is to provide industry-leading food relief to those in need while feeding them spiritually. Our four programs include:
* Food for non-profits
* Hope Packs - Weekend Backpack Meals for Students
* Tender Mercies - Protein-packed rice and bean meal
* Disaster Relief

What makes your business different, competitive, or unique?
Midwest Food Bank is a faith-based organization, serving the entire state of Arizona, and provides food and supplies free of charge to the 300+ non-profits that we partner with.

What is the nicest thing a customer has ever said about your business?
Often, our non-profit partners will be in tears when they pick up food from Midwest Food Bank because they are in awe that it is all free of charge. We enable these non-profits to fulfill their mission by helping those facing food insecurity. We are all servant-hearted and like-minded, just trying to do the Lord's work.

How has your business found value in your membership with the Gilbert Chamber?
The networking events have been a tremendous help to learning about other local businesses and meeting leaders who are interested in "giving back" to their community through volunteerism.

What motivates you professionally?
Setting goals and achieving them, especially knowing that the results are helping people in need.

What do you consider to be your greatest success?
Navigating the pandemic during my first year as Executive Director.

Who do you look up to or admire?
My eyes are focused on God. I strive to be more like Him in all that I do. That begins with having an open mind, a loving heart, and a tireless work ethic. It is not my plan, rather His plan.

When you're not working, where in Gilbert do you spend your time?
Working out at Burn Boot Camp or enjoying the weather by taking walks around the neighborhood.

Mary & Eric Sheldahl - Founders of the Arizona Division of Midwest Food Bank