Editor’s note: Each issue of the Influential Women enewsletter will feature profiles of the Business Journal’s reigning 50 Most Influential Women in West Michigan. The profile first appeared in the event program.
From intern to executive director, Bridget Clark Whitney has guided the development and growth of Kids’ Food Basket through its inception to the powerful community-driven organization it is today.
Over the last 11 years, the Grand Rapids-based nonprofit has attacked childhood hunger by providing sack suppers to children through schools and summer programs.
Kids’ Food Basket now provides nearly 6,000 meals every day in Grand Rapids and Muskegon, relying on community donations and volunteers to accomplish the daily workload.
Clark Whitney said she's proud of the evolution and noted how she has grown as well, developing competencies in leadership, strategic planning, program development and organizational management.
In 2013, Kids’ Food Basket was given the Excellence in Fundraising award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals, honored as Nonprofit of the Year at WGVU’s I Have Made a Difference Awards and granted the Muskegon Chamber of Commerce Agent of Change Award.
Also in 2013, Clark Whitney was recognized by the Grand Rapids Area Chamber as the Athena Young Professional Award recipient.
In the community
Clark Whitney has been a featured speaker at the national, state and local levels and has presented on anti-hunger issues, nonprofit governance, fundraising and volunteerism.
As board member and civic engagement committee co-chair for the Michigan Nonprofit Association, she organized the first annual SuperConference, convening all Michigan nonprofits last fall in Grand Rapids.
She also currently serves as board member, fund development committee co-chair and planning committee member for Indian Trails Camp and on the Aquinas College Community Leadership Advisory Council.