president and ceo, Capital Area food bank
Nancy E. Roman is President & CEO of the Capital Area Food Bank, the region’s largest organization working to solve hunger and its companion problems: chronic undernutrition, heart disease, and obesity. The food bank has a staff of 130 people, an annual budget of $58 million, and supplies 444 partner nonprofits in Washington DC, Northern Virginia and Maryland with food and nutrition training and education. Each year, the food bank team:
- Collects, stores, and distributes 46 million pounds of food, fully one third of which is fresh produce, to 540,000 men, women and children
- Provides information that empowers people to increase their wellness through a team of dietitians and nutrition educators
- Harnesses the energy of 26,000 volunteers who come to the food bank to give back by taking action in the community
- Creates vibrant partnerships throughout the community
Under Roman’s leadership, the Capital Area Food Bank has become a national voice for the critical importance of food as a driver of health within the low income community, and for the importance of creating access, by several means, to good food that contributes to wellness.
Roman joined the Capital Area Food Bank after an international career spanning journalism, business, U.S. government, Wall Street and the United Nations.
Her immediate past position was on the leadership team of the United Nation’s World Food Programme, the world’s largest humanitarian agency, feeding 100 million people in 75 countries. Based in Rome, she oversaw public policy, private partnerships, fundraising, and communications, supervising a global staff of more than 100, with responsibility for operations in more than 75 countries. She led a fundraising team that quadrupled funds raised from the private sector for hunger to $150 million annually. She led the organization’s move into social media, making it one of the UN powerhouses in social media. She oversaw communications, led the design of the organizations award winning website www.wfp.org, and crafted organization positions on public policy issues ranging from climate change to agricultural development. She also chaired the WFP’s Investment Committee, which had more than $1 billion under management.
Prior to joining WFP, Roman served as Vice President of the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, D.C. where she established the Council’s congressional program designed to integrate ideas generated in the think tank environment with policy decisions. She authored “Both Sides of the Aisle: A Call for Bipartisan Foreign Policy,” a Council Special Report published in 2005 that analyzed political polarization in Washington and proposed steps to build bridges between the parties and foster a more productive dialogue in foreign policy.
Before that, Roman served as president of the G7 Group, a strategic consulting firm that advised Wall Street on how political, legislative, central banking and regulatory developments affected institutional investments. The firm’s more than 120 clients – investment banks, hedge funds and asset management companies – were based in the financial communities of New York, London and Tokyo.
Roman also spent 10 years as a journalist covering politics, congress, foreign policy and economics. She came to Washington in 1988 as press secretary and foreign affairs adviser for the late U.S. Rep. Clay Shaw, Jr. (R-FL), a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee.
Roman currently serves on the board of trustees of Global Communities, an international NGO that works on hunger, health, micro-finance and lending to support lives and livelihoods.
She holds a Master of Arts degree in International Economics and American Foreign Policy from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and French from Baylor University.
Roman is married to Steven Cohen and has two children, Daniel and Taylor Beth.