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About Us

Guidestar Transparency Medal

As a 501(c)3 non-profit organization exclusively focused on food policy, CFPA can dedicate the whole of its time, resources, and energy towards increasing low-income Californians access to healthy food.

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In 2016, CFPA engaged in a strategic planning process to establish programmatic & organizational priorities for the next three years. You can learn more about CFPA's goals for 2017-20 by reading our strategic plan. PDF

A critical piece of the plan is the effort to accelerate the arrival of an age of equity and inclusion. PDF

Our prior 2013-16 plan PDF.

Our Staff

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Jared Call, Managing Policy Advocate
Office 213.482.8200 ext. 201, Cell 323.401.4972, jared@cfpa.net
Jared leads the development of our Federal Agenda, and focuses on the intersection of the anti-hunger and anti-poverty movements and CFPA's mission. Current projects include advocating for a strong SNAP/CalFresh program in the federal budget and Farm Bill and implementing policies to improve CalFresh access and participation. Jared received his BA in International Relations from San Francisco State University.

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Melissa Cannon, RD, Policy Advocate
Office 510.433.1122 ext. 102, Cell 213.447.2300, melissa@cfpa.net
Melissa contributes to CFPA’s federal and administrative advocacy and has a special interest in the intersection of health care and nutrition. Currently she is exploring promising policies to build seamless referral pathways to nutrition assistance from health care. Additional projects include: advocating for policies that increase access to nutrition for children in child care. Melissa is currently completing her Masters of Science in Health Policy and Law at UCSF.

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Elyse Homel Vitale, MPH, Senior Advocate
Office 510.433.1122 ext. 206, Cell 858.449.3597, elyse@cfpa.net
Elyse provides leadership on CFPA projects and initiatives that aim to increase low-income children's access to the nutrition resources they need for healthy development. This includes leading our Early Childhood Nutrition, School Meal Enrollment, and Federal Advocacy teams. Prior to CFPA, Elyse worked as a preschool teacher, a research associate at UCSD, and as the Hunger Advocacy Network Coordinator for JFS San Diego. Elyse obtained her MPH in Community Health Sciences at UCLA and started with CFPA in 2010.

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Kevin Lee, MA, Policy Advocate
Office 213.482.8200 ext. 202, Cell 650.888.6804, kevin@cfpa.net
Kevin has a special interest in the intersection of immigration reform and CFPA’s mission. Current projects include statewide work around increasing immigrant access to nutrition programs, early child care, and improving water quality and access; and federal work on the 2018 farm bill reauthorization. Prior to joining CFPA in 2017, Kevin was an immigrant youth organizer, and his research has been published with the Migration Policy Institute. He obtained his MA from the University of Chicago.

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George Manalo-LeClair, MSW, Executive Director
Office 510.433.1122 ext. 103, Cell 415.794.6080, george@cfpa.net
George provides overall policy and administrative leadership for the organization. For many years, George directed CFPA's legislative efforts and led CFPA's CalFresh team, championing efforts to remove barriers to participation. Prior to joining CFPA, he was the Legislative Director for the Children's Alliance in Washington. George has a master's degree in social work and over 25 years of experience in advocacy dating back to his time with the Jesuit Volunteer Corp. He joined CFPA in 1999.

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Shazia Manji, Sarah Samuels Public Policy Fellow
Office 510.433.1122 ext. 105, Cell 925.395.3822, shazia@cfpa.net
Shazia assists with CFPA's policy development and outreach process and supports research on nutrition and food insecurity among California seniors. Prior to joining CFPA, Shazia worked on environmental justice issues as the Membership & Communications Coordinator with Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles, and state nutrition legislation as a Women's Policy Institute Fellow with the Women's Foundation of California. Shazia is currently completing her Masters in Public Health and Masters in City Planning at UC Berkeley.

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Tracey Patterson, MPH, Director of Legislation
Office 510.433.1122 ext. 101, Cell 415.794.8645, tracey@cfpa.net
Tracey directs CFPA's state legislative efforts and annual policy development process. Her areas of expertise include policy advocacy to increase access to federal nutrition programs, improve the quality of food in schools and community settings, and working in collaboration with community-driven actions. Prior to joining CFPA in 2013, she had a decade of experience in public health and education in high-poverty communities in California, Louisiana and New York. Tracey has led efforts with policy makers, public schools, community-based organizations, coalitions, researchers, and government agencies. She has a MPH from the City University of New York.

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Tia Shimada, MPH, Director of Programs
Office 510.433.1122 ext. 109, tia@cfpa.net
Tia provides overarching leadership for CFPA’s programmatic work. She also oversees the development and execution of CFPA’s annual research agenda. Her areas of expertise include policy advocacy to optimize the federal nutrition programs, particularly school and summer meals, and harnessing research to drive public policy. Tia has a strong interest in advancing equity and inclusion through systems change. She received her Master of Public Health from UC Berkeley and joined the staff in 2009.

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Beatriz Sosa-Prado, MS, Policy Advocate
Office 213.482.8200 ext. 207, Cell 562.544.3404, beatriz@cfpa.net
Beatriz has a background in Latino community health and nutrition. Her current projects at CFPA center around protecting immigrant access to nutrition programs and improving early childcare nutrition and cultural competency. Her previous research has focused on Latino/a health and culture, obesity prevention, and health disparities. Beatriz holds an M.S. in Health Science from California State University, Long Beach and an M.S.P.H. from University of California, Merced. She is a strong advocate of health care justice for all Californians.