Greenfield native tapped as new meals program board president

  • BOYD


For the Recorder
Published: 3/1/2022 4:04:42 PM

GREENFIELD — After starting his career in the restaurant industry in New York City, Greenfield native Joe Timmins has returned to his hometown to serve the Franklin County Community Meals Program as president of its board of directors.

In his new role, Timmins is leading the board in fundraising, community partnerships and strategic planning to advance the Franklin County Community Meals Program’s presence in the community and its ability to relieve hunger for as many families and individuals as possible. He is replacing Marian Boyd, who is moving to the North Shore to be closer to family.

“Food security is a fundamental human right,” Timmins said. “Our first priority is serving people in our community. … In 2021, one out of nine people in Franklin County was food insecure.”

Timmins grew up in Greenfield, but spent 10 years in New York City as general manager and beverage manager of several chef-driven restaurant concepts. He also spent time as the federal business development manager for CTI Energy Services headquartered in Amherst. Now, he’s returned to the city he calls home.

“Now that I’m back, I want to re-embrace the community. I want to deepen and expand my community ties,” Timmins explained. “I’m really excited to work with this team and serve this mission to make an impact.”

Looking to alleviate hunger locally, the Franklin County Community Meals Program operates four community meals sites in Greenfield, Orange, Turners Falls and Northfield, as well as three food pantries.

Timmins stressed his appreciation for the community connections that the meals program forms, saying “it’s important to us for there to be a sense of respect, dignity and hospitality.”

Boyd, the previous president of the Franklin County Community Meals Program’s board of directors, served as a board member for 12 years and as president for three.

“It’s been a great experience for me, and I’ve learned and grown,” Boyd said.

One and a half years into Boyd’s role as president, the COVID-19 pandemic hit, and like many other organizations, the meals program was forced to make changes quickly.

“The last two years we’ve had to find ways of doing things so that we can continue to feed people,” Boyd said. “We had a drive-thru pantry and pick-up meals for a while. … We’re still not back to any kind of normal like what we were before the pandemic.”

Boyd has volunteered for hospice, the YMCA and Warm the Children, and served food to her community through her church.

“No one should have to go to bed hungry and then wake up having to function — whether that’s going to school, work or whatever your day entails,” she said. “In this country, having food is not the problem — it’s access and distribution that are the problem.”

As Boyd prepares to move to the North Shore to be closer to family, she said she is excited to see the Franklin County Community Meals Program grow under Timmins leadership.

“The next board will find more efficient ways of doing things and continue to grow,” she said. “I’m excited to see where they go. I know I’m leaving the organization in good hands.”


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