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.

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

our team

Julie Shifman

Executive Director

(513) 449-1698

See bio

Eileen Budo

Chief Operating Officer

(513) 449-1698

See bio

Benita Munnerlyn

Dispatch Manager

(513) 466-1307

See Bio

Olivia Cook

Volunteer & Marketing Manager

(513) 494-7918

See bio

Jerome Peaker

Partnerships & Programs Director

(513) 449-1767

See bio

our board

Tom Fernandez

Board Chair, Cincinnati USA
Regional Chamber

Neil Tilow

CEO, Talbert House

Jodi Geiser

Retired Partner EY

Kurt Reiber

President and CEO,
Freestore Food Bank

Matt Fischer

Founder and CEO, Curiosity

Kelly Dolan

Co Founder and CEO, Ingage

Bill Goldberg

Managing Principal, W. Alexander Group

Clyde Gray

Former WCPO anchor, current host of Cincy Lifestyle

Hank Kerschen

Assistant Vice President, Primary Care and Clinical Transformation, St. Elizabeth Physicians

Deon Mack

Cincinnati Police Officer

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 Executive Director. With the addition of 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.

Want to go the extra mile with us?

Here are ways that you can help