about
us

our mission

Last Mile is a Greater Cincinnati food rescue organization on a mission to save good food and get it to those who need it most. We empower local change-makers like you to make a critical difference in the lives of our neighbors fighting food insecurity. By using the power of volunteers fueled by technology, we connect Food Donors with nonprofits who serve the region’s food insecure, fighting food waste and helping to end the hunger that’s closest to home.

driving down food insecurity

Over 270,000 people in our 20-county region experience food insecurity.

Yet more than 40% of good food goes to waste.

Last Mile Food Rescue was founded to bridge the gaps between hunger, food waste and environmental sustainability in the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky region.

Click here to view the Last Mile 2022 Impact Report.

Learn more about food waste and food insecurity in our community.

our team

Eileen Budo

Chief Executive Officer

513-449-1698

[email protected]

See bio

Julie Shifman

Co-founder, Vice President of External Relations

513-449-1698

[email protected]

 

See bio

Benita Capers

Senior Manager, Dispatch Operations and Data Analytics

(513) 466-1307
[email protected]

See bio

Jocelyn Henderson

Public Relations & Digital Marketing Manager

513-494-7998 

[email protected] 

See Bio

Aaron Moore

Senior Manager of Donor & Agency Partnerships & Programs

(513) 449-1704
[email protected]

See bio

Andrea Suto

Last Mile Market Assistant Manager

[email protected] 

 

See Bio

Crystal Cottrill

Relationship Manager

(513) 494-7943
[email protected]

See bio

Erik Hyden

Food Donor Solicitation Manager

(513) 285-8214
[email protected]

See bio

Warren Lyles

Driver

[email protected]

See bio

Beth Voorhees

Marketing Director

513-494-7918

[email protected]

See bio

Christopher Fitzgerald

Food Rescue Process Coordinator

513-449-1697

[email protected] 

 

See Bio

Deana Rimes

Food Rescue Process Coordinator

513-434-5756

[email protected]

See Bio

Matthew Swartz

Executive Administrative Assistant

513-438-6138

[email protected]

See Bio

CJ Handley

Driver

[email protected]

See Bio

Sherman Parnell

Dispatch Manager

[email protected]

 

See Bio

our board

Tom Fernandez

Co-Founder of Last Mile Food Rescue & Ex-officio Board Member

Neil Tilow

Founder, Parkway 3.0 Consulting (Former CEO, Talbert House)

Jodi Geiser

Board Chair, Last Mile Food Rescue, and Partner-Retired, EY

Jenifer Moore

Corporate Affairs Manager, Kroger

Matt Fischer

Founder and CEO, Curiosity

Bill Goldberg

CEO Investor, W. Alexander Group

Hank Kerschen

Board Secretary, President, St. Elizabeth Provider Network

Deon Mack

Cincinnati Police Seargant

Andrew Cron

Chief Scientist, 84.51°

Aaron Vennemeyer

Brand Director, Procter & Gamble

Eleanor Haussler

Board Treasurer, Partner-Retired, Deloitte

Pete Blackshaw

Founder & CEO, BrandRank.AI

Melissa Stevens

Executive VP & CMO, Fifth Third Bank

Julie Calvert

President & CEO, Visit Cincy

our story

Tom Fernandez and Julie Shifman have one important belief in common: good food belongs to people, not landfills. Originally on separate paths, these co-founders found their way to one another and started the journey toward Greater Cincinnati’s first large scale organization dedicated to both food insecurity and food waste: Last Mile Food Rescue.

It all started in 2018 when Tom received coaching from the Chamber’s Leadership Action, Flywheel and Cintrifuse’s NITRO programs to analyze the issue of food insecurity in our community. Tom was shocked to discover how much food was being wasted all around us—good food that could be used to help nourish our own neighbors most at risk for facing food insecurity.

Tom also learned that other cities, like Pittsburgh’s 412 Food Rescue, had already created a solution: large scale food rescue operations. In the summer of 2019 while on a pilgrimage walking the Camino de Santiago in Spain, Tom spent his days in contemplation of the belief that food is a basic human right. He returned to the US even more committed to the founding of a large food rescue in Greater Cincinnati.

Meanwhile, as fate would have it, Julie Shifman was intrigued by her sister Margie’s experiences with a food rescue organization in Atlanta, called Second Helpings. Margie found her volunteer food rescue work so rewarding, she joined the board at Second Helpings. Julie was fascinated by the idea of an operation that could move large amounts of good food to those in need by mobilizing community volunteers. Wondering why nothing like this existed in Cincinnati, she contacted Kurt Reiber, CEO of The Freestore Foodbank.

During this conversation, Kurt mentioned that Tom Fernandez, was also passionate about tackling the challenge of food rescue in the community. Kurt introduced Tom and Julie, they met, realized they made a great team, and decided to join forces as co-founders of Last Mile Food Rescue.

Just like any start-up, they’ve learned, pivoted–and learned some more–on their journey to save good food and get it to the region’s food insecure. Today, Tom remains as the Board Chair of Last Mile, and Julie is the VP of External Relations. With Eileen Budo as COO and a committed working board of change-makers, Last Mile Food Rescue is on the road to making a critical difference in Cincinnati.

Eileen Budo was named Chief Executive Officer of Last Mile Food Rescue on April 1, 2023. Budo had served as Chief Operating Officer since joining Last Mile at its inception in 2019. Prior to Last Mile, Budo honed her logistics expertise as a senior executive at P&G, securing multi-million dollar partnerships with suppliers around the world and crafted the first shared service for P&G manufacturing plants. Her logistics expertise has been critical to Last Mile’s success in diverting 5 million lbs of desirable food from the landfill and delivering it to those who need it most. 

Want to go the extra mile with us?

Here are ways that you can help