Speaker Series: A Place at the Table
Bill Bolling has served as Executive Director of the Atlanta Community Food Bank since founding the organization in 1979. In this capacity, he oversees the distribution of more than 35 million pounds of food and grocery products each year through a network of 600 local and regional partner nonprofit organizations that feed the hungry across 29 Georgia counties. As a charter member of Feeding America, the national network of food banks, Bill was instrumental in the start-up of food banks across the country. He is a frequent speaker on topics related to hunger, poverty, regionalism, affordable housing and public policy reform. His skills in bridging various public sectors have made him a leader in strengthening the community to serve those most in need. Prior to his association with the Food Bank, he served as director of community ministries for St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Atlanta. In January of 2012, Bill was named Georgia Trend Magazine’s 2012 Georgian of the Year. Bill earned his Master of Arts in Psychology and Counseling from West Georgia College and degrees in Business and Education from Central Piedmont College and Appalachian State University.
Elizabeth Cohen is senior medical correspondent for CNN's Health, Medical and Wellness unit, reporting breaking medical news and health consumer reporting on CNN and CNN.com. Her signature digital column the Empowered Patient keeps consumers informed on how to ensure the best medical care for themselves and their families. Her book, THE EMPOWERED PATIENT: How to get the Right Diagnosis, Buy the Cheapest Drugs, Beat Your Insurance Company, and Get the Best Medical Care Every Time, was published in August 2010.
Eric Olsen is the Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Public Policy at Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger-relief organization. Olsen is responsible for the coordination of all resources and research on issues of domestic hunger, public policy and related topics for Feeding America public policy initiatives, publications, and public education activity. Additionally, Olsen directs lobbying efforts at the federal, state and local level to bring the greatest benefits to the low-income and food insecure, also representing Feeding America at governmental and legislative forums, hearings and other initiatives where Feeding America network food banks show their support for legislation and policy that will bring about positive change in the fight against hunger.
About A Place at the Table:
From Participant Media and Magnolia Pictures, the companies who brought you Food, Inc., comes another astonishing documentary that exposes a serious problem that affects 1 out of 6 Americans – these could be your neighbors, your friends, your coworkers, and you would never know, because people are too ashamed to talk about it. 50 million people in the U.S. – one in four children – don’t know where their next meal is coming from, despite our having the means to provide nutritious, affordable food for all Americans. Directors Kristi Jacobson and Lori Silverbush examine this issue through the lens of three people who are struggling with food insecurity: Barbie, a single Philadelphia mother who grew up in poverty and is trying to provide a better life for her two kids; Rosie, a Colorado fifth-grader who often has to depend on friends and neighbors to feed her and has trouble concentrating in school; and Tremonica, a Mississippi second-grader whose asthma and health issues are exacerbated by the largely empty calories her hardworking mother can afford.
Their stories are interwoven with insights from experts including sociologist Janet Poppendieck, author Raj Patel and nutrition policy leader Marion Nestle; ordinary citizens like Pastor Bob Wilson and teachers Leslie Nichols and Odessa Cherry; and activists such as Witness to Hunger’s Mariana Chilton, Top Chef’s Tom Colicchio and Oscar®-winning actor Jeff Bridges.
Twitter: @PlaceAtTheTable & @BlankFoundation
News & Resources:
- A Place at the Table website, includes ways to Take Action and Resources for food assistance
- Videos from our premier event
- Photos from Feb. 28 screening
- Press Release: Atlanta Falcons Youth Foundation, Blank Family Foundation Host Georgia Premiere of Documentary Film on Hunger in America
- A Place at the Table on The Daily Show (Part 1, Part 2)