Jaye Lopez Van Soest Joins Fair Food Network as Senior Director of Development

Accomplished leader with development and social and economic justice expertise takes new role at nonprofit

17 March 2021 | ANN ARBOR, Mich.— Jaye Lopez Van Soest joins Fair Food Network this week as its first Senior Director of Development. Van Soest brings more than 20 years of leadership in development to the Michigan-based national nonprofit. As Senior Director of Development, Van Soest will lead work engaging and inspiring a diverse network of change makers to advance Fair Food Network’s mission to growing community and wealth through food. This includes working across its main program areas including national leadership in healthy food incentives and impact investing efforts aimed at investing in food entrepreneurs to be engines of a more equitable future.

“I’m inspired by the work of Fair Food Network and it’s direct connection between the power of food and advancing health and wealth equity while supporting environmental sustainability along the way,” said Van Soest. “I am excited to put my manifold fundraising and development experience to work in this new role.”

Van Soest takes this leadership role at Fair Food Network at a time when the organization’s work is more needed than ever with community food insecurity at record highs and small businesses, especially those led by entrepreneurs of color, struggling as the COVID-19 crisis continues. She will work to expand partnerships with foundations and individual donors to open economic opportunities for more food entrepreneurs and expand nutrition incentive programs, helping families who need it most bring home more healthy food.

“We are working toward greater equity in our food economy, increased access to health food for everyone, and a more sustainable ecological future. Jaye’s leadership and development experience working with nonprofits and foundations to advocate for social and economic change will be so valuable as we work towards this vision,” said Kate Krauss, Executive Director & Chief Operating Officer at Fair Food Network.

Prior to joining Fair Food Network, Van Soest worked with the American Foundation for the Blind where she led development efforts to advocate for structural change to promote accessibility, equality, and opportunity for people who are blind or visually impaired. She also led development at Public Justice, which pursues high impact lawsuits to combat social and economic injustice, protect the Earth’s sustainability, and challenge predatory corporate conduct and government abuses. Her work also included development for University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law, one of only six American Bar Association-accredited law schools at an HBCU in the nation. Jaye also held frontline fundraising positions at the American Constitution Society for Law & Policy and the Human Rights Campaign.

Jaye is a past president of the Association of Fundraising Professionals Washington, DC Chapter (AFP DC) and served on the board of directors for the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP Global). She serves as co-chair of the Virtual 2021 Bridge to Integrated Marketing & Fundraising Conference. Jaye earned her initial Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) certification in 2010.

Van Soest will be based in Washington, D.C. and can be reached at jlopezvansoest@fairfoodnetwork.org.